Avoiding Foreclosure on Your Home

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Owning a house is a major responsibility, but what should a homeowner do if they are unable to make mortgage payments on that property, or if they are deep in debt? Often, foreclosure may become a possibility, and the mortgage company or other agents may pressure the owner to look into “sell your home fast” options or, failing that, simply evict them. In other cases, the owner will decide to sell their home on their own volition, and look for some other living arrangement once their property is sold. Now, how to how to stop foreclosure? While foreclosure can be a dreadful thing, a homeowner can take some steps to prevent it from happening, and fortunately, mortgage companies are more interested in getting the money than getting the house.

How to Stop Foreclosure

This is hardly a rare occurrence; it is believed that every three months in the United States, some 250,000 new families will enter foreclosure, and a Harris Interactive poll shows that 38% of respondents would be terrified if they faced foreclosure. But a foreclosure does not happen all at once; if a homeowner is behind on mortgage and similar payments, they will know in advance if a foreclosure is coming, and they can use this time to try and prevent it. So, how to stop foreclosure?

The process of “how to stop foreclosure” mostly involves a homeowner knowing all the details of their debt and the property, not to mention cooperating with the mortgage company in question. Basic strategies include having a swift response, since sitting on a possible foreclosure will just make the problem worse and waste time. The moment a homeowner is aware of a possible foreclosure, they should take action and start formulating a plan. Also, that homeowner is urged to open all mail from their lender and carefully read it, so they know what their options are and have all relevant information on hand. It is easier to deal with a foreclosure if the homeowner knows exactly what’s going on. Also, the homeowner should review all of their rights as a property owner, so no dishonest parties try to trick them or exploit them (and every state has different foreclosure laws), and they should know that honest mortgage companies and agents would rather work out a deal than just take the property back right away. For all parties involved, a full foreclosure and eviction is the last option.

A homeowner may also turn to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for counseling, so they can learn the relevant laws in their state and figure out exactly what their options are. Such services are available across the nation, and agents from HUD can even represent a client during negotiations with a lender. However, it is not a good idea to hire foreclosure prevention companies, since they charge a lot of money that would be better used to repay the mortgage itself. Even the most honest of these companies may be a bad deal, and the worst ones are little more than scams. Homeowners should not sign any paperwork from a company that promises to stop a foreclosure immediately. Instead, the homeowner can try and sell some of their assets or find a new job to refinance their mortgage, or take any other refinancing option they can think of. Often, lenders will cooperate with the homeowner to explore this possibility.

Selling a Home Fast

In some cases, a homeowner is unable or unwilling to refinance their home or secure a better source of income, so they will end up selling their house. Not by the usual means, though; instead of the regular housing market, the homeowner may turn to “we buy ugly houses” and similar companies for help. This means contacting those companies and waiting for them to send an agent, who will look over the property and determine its value. Then, the home-buyer agent will offer cash for a fraction of the property’s value, and the homeowner may accept if they so choose. This does mean taking a huge loss on the property’s value, but in some cases, this is the only way to sell the home at all, and appease lenders who are getting impatient.

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