March 25th, 2009 12:47 PM by Daniel Poulos
In some markets more than 1 out of 10 homeowners are dealing with a pending foreclosure. The most common initial reaction is to avoid the lender and bury one's head like an ostrich hoping to avoid danger. It is impossible to hide from mortgage obligations without dire consequences but a proactive strategy can produce positive results.
The first step is to stare the problem right in the face. You've got to deal honestly with the questions at hand. For instance:
· Could you afford to stay if the payment was lower?
· Are you expecting that you can catch up on arrears?
· Do have the money to move if evicted or sold as a short sale?
· What would be the effect of a deficiency judgment on your financial condition, both present and future?
Next is to determine the goals of your strategy. Where do want to be when this is over?
· Do you want to stay in the house if the payment can be made affordable?
· Do you owe much more than the house is worth and just want a way out with some damage control?
· Do you need to stay in the house for as long as possible without being able to make any mortgage payments?
Your options will be dictated by how you have addressed the above questions and defined your immediate goals. The most common options include a refinance or modification of the mortgage, a sale of the property, negotiating a deed in lieu of foreclosure or just stalling what may be an inevitable foreclosure. Most important to remember is that a foreclosure is a legal procedure. Richard Weinstein, an attorney in Jupiter, Fl specializes in foreclosure defenses and explains that, "there is much too much at stake for the average individual to try to properly address all the issues of the foreclosure process. The homeowner has rights they must demand and possibly assets they need to protect. Unrepresented borrowers very often find themselves unnecessarily homeless and still hopelessly in debt."
I couldn't agree more! I have seen too many regretful real life experiences with disastrous results that could have been averted if the homeowner in distress had gotten proper advice before it became too late. The sooner the dangers are acknowledged the more options that remain available, both practical and legal.
Some have advised that the first person to talk to is your lender. Here I disagree. Doesn't it make more sense to first speak with someone who is already prepared for your lender's response and knows what information should be shared? If you find yourself in the position that you cannot meet your mortgage obligations I encourage you to speak to a mortgage professional that is well versed in all possible remedies. Elite Lending offers free consultations for homeowner's in need. Please call 516-575-5626 for more information and visit www.EliteLending.biz.
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