No matter where you live, whether it's a small cottage or an elaborate mansion, losing your home in a foreclosure easily ranks as one of life's worst experiences, both financially and emotionally.
- Financially, foreclosure consists of losing probably your biggest asset, as well as all the money put into it. Any equity built up in the home may also be forfeited (the difference between what your house is actually worth and the balance left on your bond.) Aside from filing for bankruptcy, nothing damages a credit history more than a foreclosure.
- Emotionally, losing a home means losing a fundamental piece of your life and an important measure of success. A foreclosure may cause one to feel like a failure, embarrassed or have low self-esteem, as the foreclosure will be in the public records. Foreclosure will also disrupt your family's life, your kids and your relationships.
BUT: You can avoid foreclosure if you tackle your mortgage issues head on and know your options. Keeping Foreclosure at Bay:
- Get in touch with a lender to discuss various options, as soon as you know you're going to have problems keeping up your mortgage or as soon as you've missed a payment
- Read each and every notice you receive about your mortgage, especially if you've already missed a payment or two. The notices will inform you of your rights, alert you to important deadlines associated with your past-due mortgage, and provide you with opportunities to try to resolve your mortgage arrearage. Also, if you receive a voice mail message regarding your mortgage, return the call right away.
- Even if you don't pick up a certified letter related to your past due mortgage, the foreclosure process will move forward.
- Take Immediate Steps: If your finances are not in particularly bad shape, you may be able to resolve your mortgage situation by taking the following steps
- Develop a realistic household budget and stick to it
- Review existing budget for expenses you can reduce or eliminate
- Negotiate reduced payments with other creditors and put the money you save toward your mortgage
Lower your monthly debt payments by consolidating your debts
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