Avoid Foreclosure – Loan Modification Can Save Your Home – Part 1 of 2
Most home loan borrowers don’t know that it is possible to avoid foreclosure by obtaining what is called a “loan modification” if they get behind on their mortgage payments. When a lender agrees to provide a loan modification, your mortgage is modified to move the past due payments to the end of the mortgage loan term and often the loan is modified to allow for smaller monthly payments.
So, if you are behind on your mortgage payments and are faced with foreclosure… don’t give up hope quite yet. You may still be able to save your home.
Before I go any further, I need to point out that when this happened to me, I live in the State of Ohio and I and my home come under the laws of the State of Ohio. Everything in this post is written from that perspective but, I believe, many other states have similar laws.
What Happened to Us
Most borrowers don’t know that the mortgage loan modification process even exists. I didn’t know that there was such a thing as a mortgage modification so my wife and I figured that we had lost our home of many years.
We didn’t know for sure what we were going do. It was quite a depressing time in our lives. It was especially depressing since we are both older and believed that we were faced with living in low quality government housing or in other bad neighborhoods for the rest of our lives.
I had been forced into retirement two or three years earlier than we had planned so we were “caught totally unawares,” as they say. And because I unexpectedly lost my ability to make money, we had no income to speak of and it took several months to get our social security going (not the Social Security Administration’s fault… they were great; any fault was ours).
My wife and I were both eligible for social security retirement benefits, so when we did begin living mostly on social security, our combined incomes was enough that the first mortgage holder was willing to consider modifying our mortgage so we could stay in our home, even after a full year of not making payments.
How We Found Out About Loan Modifications
The way we found out about the loan modification process was that we got an advertisement in the mail from an Attorney who specializes in helping people in trouble with their mortgage get their mortgage loans modified so they can stay in their homes. I contacted the attorney and after I figured out that it wasn’t a scam of some sort, I agreed to pay his fee which was equal to slightly less than one mortgage payment on our home. He wanted half up front and half upon completion of the case which was dismissal of the Foreclosure Complaint or the decision of the Judge approving of the foreclosure.
If you are wondering who the attorney that saved our home for us is. His name is Attorney David Patterson, Esq. His offices are in Willoughby, Ohio. Give him a call if you are in Ohio. His telephone number is 440-943-4700.
He and his staff did a great job for us. I can’t tell you how grateful we are for what they did.
By the way, I am not receiving and I do not expect to receive any money or other remuneration from Attorney Patterson other than perhaps his thanks for mentioning him in this article.
Two Words of Warning
Here are two words of warning that you need to think about…
… First, most attorneys know about mortgage modification but, I believe, are unwilling to do the whole job because they don’t have the necessary expertise. A very good case in point is the legal firm that I’ve done business with for many years and that I am fairly satisfied with. They have helped me successfully many times in the past but the attorney who is assigned to me wasn’t willing to do the whole job because he was unfamiliar with the modification process.
I needed someone who was going to do the whole job and actually knew what needs to be done. So, I gave the business to Attorney Patterson.
Make sure that the attorney you use is totally familiar with the loan modification process and has done it successfully numerous times in the past. Attorneys are somewhat like doctors in that there are many specialties and while a given doctor may know quite a bit about your ailment, it’s always better to go to a specialist if your ailment is serious. Loss of your home is very serious… get a specialist if you can.
Second, make sure you do what your attorney tells you to do. I had to explain my circumstances in writing and explain why I thought that I was a good risk for a mortgage modification. I did it well and you will need to do it that way too.
Check my next post where I’ll talk about what I did to present my story in the most favorable light that I could, the steps that we went through in our loan modification process and how everything turned out.