August 28, 2011

Who to trust for foreclosure prevention advice

By Timothy Stull (

There are some days when the phone rings off the hook in my office.  The foreclosure problems that this nation faces is epic.  The serious problems started in 4Q 2006….the problem has become much more complex since then.  It is hard to believe this mammoth problem has existed for nearly 5 years….many economists feel that it will take another 8 years to clear out.  The failed government intervention and model programs only added fuel to the fire.  It is like we are back at square one….14 million families are in default on there mortgages….4 million families are more than 12 months behind…..7 million families are more than 8 months past due.  The government has no plans to try and fix this problem again….they have stated that they want to let the real estate markets recover on their own.  It has left alot of families in serious trouble.  What do you do?  Who do you turn to?  Listed below is the best short list of foreclosure prevention advice you will get.  They are answers to common questions I receive daily.  Alot of folks will not like some of these statements.  Please keep in mind that I don’t sugar coat anything….I shoot straight from the hip & tell it like it is.

1.  I have not mad a mortgage payment in 12+ months, what are my options?  Any way you want to break it down, you will need to hire an attorney.  Either for bankruptcy or litigation purposes.  Bottom line is that you are most likely being sued by your lender.  Foreclosure is a legal process that involves the lender suing you for a debt.  The legal process is very confusing.  The chance of you getting them to stop the lawsuit are very slim.  Most people have no clue what stage of the foreclosure process they are in.  They have no idea how close they are to eviction.

I don’t have any money to pay for help….what do I do?  You can certainly try reaching out to the non for profit groups for help.   However, recent government cut backs have caused many to shut down.  The staff at the non for profits is overworked, underpaid & not trained well.  You really must ask yourself ~ do I lack the “ability to pay”?  Or do I lack the “want to pay”?  I always ask everyone to ask themselves these questions.  How serious are you about saving your home.

3.  My neighbor has not made a payment in 2 years ~ why can’t I do the same thing?  While this is a very tempting option, it only leads to further problems down the road.  Most families blow all the money they should have been saving during this process.  They do not budget to move forward for the future.  Eventually you will be evicted.  Eventually the rubber will meet the road.  You will need to rent.  Landlords are pickier than ever now.  How will you explain the fact that you did not pay because “you wanted to not pay”.  Many families find that they need to pay high rent to live in neighborhood with poor conditions.  This is a big price to pay for short term satisfaction skipping payments now.

The Fresh Start Legal Network offers free advice daily.  We have 22 years experience counseling home owners with serious foreclosure problems.  You can call 877.297.7011 for immediate help.

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