How to Prevent Foreclosure in California
Foreclosure is one of those worst-case scenarios most of us don’t like to think about. The prospect of losing a home is devastating. It can make you feel physically sick, yet people are faced with this reality every day. If you’re in this pickle, or if you’re worried you might be headed in that direction, stop and take a deep breath. There is help available. Here are the essential steps you can take to avoid foreclosure.
What Does Foreclosure Mean?
Foreclosure is a legal process in which a lender takes possession of a property due to the homeowner’s failure to make mortgage payments. It’s the lender’s way of recovering the amount owed on a defaulted loan.
Talk to Your Lender
Many times, people feel like the lender is their biggest enemy when they’re falling behind on their mortgage. In reality, the lender is one of your biggest allies in preventing foreclosure. Simply put, a lender would much rather get paid than have to go through the foreclosure process.
If you’re aware of financial problems, talk to them immediately. They can work with you on modified or temporary payment plans that can help you weather a storm. As the old saying goes, “You miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take.” Start by taking a shot with your lender.
Get Free Counseling
If the talk with the lender doesn’t go the way you hoped, there are plenty of options left to pursue. You can learn about them in detail when you get free counseling. The federal government sponsors multiple divisions that offer varying degrees of debt- and money-management counseling. For foreclosure, the Making Home Affordable program is completely free. The counseling can help you explore all of your options, and they might include filing for bankruptcy, legally challenging the foreclosure, and renegotiating loan payments.
Don’t Hire a Negotiator
Despite that previous option for preventing foreclosure, you don’t want to hire a professional negotiator. There are plenty of legitimate businesses that offer this service, but the trend is to charge you as much as they save you in the renegotiated loan. It’s possible it could help you stave off foreclosure, but you’re likely to be losing money in the long run.
Much more important is the fact that many foreclosure settlement scams are mixed in with the legit businesses. Trying to identify the scam artists is incredibly difficult, and getting it wrong can cost you your house, your credit, and a lump of cash. It’s not a fun road to travel.
Talk to a Lawyer
Instead of a specialized negotiator, a lawyer can help you explore all of your options. It’s usually better to start with free counseling, but in some cases, legal help is what you’ll ultimately need. Lawyers can get into contract negotiation, and even in some cases of bankruptcy, you might need legal counsel. Most of all, if the best path to preserve your home is a lawsuit, you already know you’ll need legal representation.
Sell the House
There’s a fair amount of time between receiving foreclosure notices and having the house seized. You get chances to try to rectify the situation. The process is so drawn out to make sure you have time to exhaust every possibility. In many cases, selling the house is the best resolution. You can conceivably get enough money from the sale to settle the debt. If you’re lucky and the markets are on your side, you might even have enough left over to get into a new house (but you can’t assume this will be the case).
Selling your house can save your credit and get you out of a tough spot. The peace of mind that comes from this rapid relief is hard to beat.
How to Stop Foreclosure in California
When you’re up against the clock, you don’t always have the freedom to sell your house through traditional means. If you’re facing foreclosure near Stockton and Modesto, you can enlist the services of Frank Buys Houses. The process is easy and fast. Within a matter of days, you can have an offer on your house and start finalizing the sale, and you don’t have to commit to anything until after you’ve seen the offer.
1. Bringing Your Loan Current: Catch up on your missed payments, including any fees and late charges, to halt the foreclosure process.
2. Requesting a Loan Modification: This involves altering the terms of your loan, which could mean reducing the interest rate, extending the length of the loan, or adding the missed payments to the loan balance.
3. Making a Forbearance Agreement: The lender may agree to temporarily reduce or suspend your payments, giving you some time to recover financially.
4. Refinancing: Obtain a new loan to replace the existing one, ideally with better terms and a lower interest rate.
5. Making a Short Sale: Sell your home for less than the amount you owe on your mortgage, with the lender’s consent.
6. Obtaining a Reverse Mortgage: For homeowners 62 or older, this allows you to convert part of the equity in your home into cash.
7. Declaring Bankruptcy: This can halt the foreclosure process, though it comes with significant financial implications and should be considered as a last resort.
8. Filing a Lawsuit to Stop the Foreclosure Process: If your lender did not follow all the legal procedures during the foreclosure, you might be able to challenge it.
9. Seeking a Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure: You voluntarily transfer your property title to the lender in exchange for the cancellation of the remaining debt.
10. Avoiding Scams: Unfortunately, many companies prey on homeowners facing foreclosure. Always do thorough research before hiring any firm claiming to help with foreclosure prevention.
11. Selling Your Home to a Real Estate Investor: Investors like Frank Buys Houses can buy your home quickly, offering a fast and hassle-free solution.
12. Deed In Lieu of Foreclosure: This is a last-resort option where you give up your property to avoid foreclosure proceedings.
Expert Advice in Troubling Times
Dealing with the threat of foreclosure can be daunting. However, it’s crucial to act quickly and consider all available options. It’s also essential to consult with professionals who can guide you through this challenging period. Remember, taking proactive steps can mean the difference between losing your home and finding a suitable solution that allows you to move forward.
Facing foreclosure in Stockton, CA? Time is of the essence. Trust the expertise of Frank Buys Houses, the best Cash Home Buyers in the region, to offer a fast and fair solution tailored for you. Reach out today at 209-395-1355 and let us help you navigate through this challenging time.