• Larissa McKenzie

Five Things A Homeowner Should Never Do If They Fall Behind On Their Mortgage

1. Absolutely do not ever deed your property to a third party without absolute confirmation your loan has been paid off. If you deed your property to a third party, that party then controls the property. The new owner can rent the property (and keep the rent), attempt to sell the property to make a profit, move into the property or use the property in other ways. What the new owner might not do is make your mortgage payments. Just because you no longer own the property does not mean you are no longer responsible for the mortgage loan obligations. The lender made the loan to you. And until it is paid off you will be primarily responsible for the mortgage obligation. If you give up control of the property and the new owner does not pay on the loan, the damage to your credit could be catastrophic.

2. Do not sell the home at a huge discount. Unless the actual foreclosure sale is less than 45 days away, you have time to explore options. I advise you to take a day or two and make a few phone calls. As a general rule, if someone is pushing you hard to get you to sell your property to them, it’s probably because the deal they are proposing is very favorable – to them. If you have equity in your home, it belongs to you. You should be encouraged to talk with a Realtor to see if they can get their equity back to you.

3. Do not authorize a prospective buyer to deal directly with your mortgage company. The buyer has one goal and one goal only, and that is to negotiate a low, probably very low price direct with the lender. The buyer will ask the lender to accept a discounted payoff. The negotiations could go on over an extended period of time, and if the transaction does not work out the buyer may elect not to buy the property. It could leave you with very little time to resolve the situation and avoid foreclosure. Further, you have no control over the information that goes to your lender or the accuracy thereof. It is entirely possible that the buyer could handle the negotiation and presentation of information in a way that makes it very difficult for you to resolve your loan situation later. Using a Realtor professional is your best bet, surly before signing any contract. It costs you nothing – the lender pays the fees. Someone should be looking out for you.

4. Do not pay upfront fees to anyone! Homeowners do not need to pay professional service or consulting fees to get the help you need to resolve their delinquent loan. Housing counseling from HUD approved counseling agencies is FREE. 5. Don’t Do Nothing - A surprising number of people just accept what they see as the inevitable, and let foreclosure run its course. Don’t let it happen – the damage to your credit will follow you for years to come. Contact me today via email or 770-639-3993

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