According to a 2021 study conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, 6.2% or 13.4 million Americans are behind on their mortgage payments. The average American isn’t immune to tough economic times, and an inability to make mortgage payments isn’t something to take lightly.
Are you currently experiencing financial distress and unable to make payments on your home mortgage? Don’t panic. Take a deep breath and follow these smart steps.
Call Your Bank/Servicer Immediately
Find your latest mortgage statement and look for the number of your servicer. Call your servicer immediately should you miss a payment.
When you call, you must explain a few crucial details:
- Why you can’t make your payments
- How long do you expect to miss payments
- Income information
- Asset information
- Monthly expenditures
Most mortgage servicers have programs to help folks experiencing economic distress avoid foreclosure. Your servicer will evaluate your current finances to see if they qualify for assistance.
Your servicer may also ask you to complete a mortgage assistance application. Once completed and returned, the service will determine what mitigation it will offer you.
Contact a Foreclosure Attorney
Most Americans aren’t experts on foreclosure law, and if you face proceedings, going it alone isn’t a great option. You’ll have hearings and negotiations with your mortgage company. If you’re under financial distress, tackling these proceedings will only add to your stress.
An expert foreclosure attorney can help. They know all the latest foreclosure regulations and will handle negotiations with your servicing company.
They also defend your rights during foreclosure proceedings. Servicers don’t always follow the letter of the law during the foreclosure process, and having a defense attorney on your side offers you protection and peace of mind.
Work Out a Repayment Plan/Forbearance
Acute financial distress is often temporary. You may lose your job or experience a medical emergency.
If you missed payments due to an acute financial disruption, your foreclosure defense attorney might be able to negotiate a repayment plan. This repayment plan will let you pay down your debt over a set period.
You may also qualify for a forbearance. During one, your lender may lower or suspend your mortgage payments. This period gives you the precious time you need to restabilize your finances.
After the forbearance period ends, your payments resume with a negotiated repayment plan for any missed payments.
Follow These Smart Steps and Keep Your Home
Financial distress isn’t easy, and losing your home is a traumatic life event. Foreclosure law can get complicated, and you need protection from predators. You also need peace of mind.
Hiring an attorney may seem impossible, especially if you’re short on money. Yet, hiring a foreclosure defense attorney is one of the crucial smart steps you must take if you’re at risk of losing your home.
Don’t wait another minute if you’re facing possible foreclosure. Estavillo Law Group handles foreclosures. Contact us today to learn more about your options.