Dealing with Mortgage Arrears

One misconception that has proven detrimental to a great many borrowers is the notion that a bankruptcy will help you to get out of your debt and allow you to keep your home. This is not the case.

If you are having problems with mortgage arrears, you know that there is no other debt that will cause so much headache, anxiety, and panic. After all, you can live without cable television, you can deal without having you nice new Toyota and just go back to driving your old Chevy, you can even live without the credit cards and the morning latte or the spa visits, but you cannot live without having a roof over your head. While it is ideal to head off mortgage arrears before they happen, once you are facing them you will need to deal with them quickly and decisively.

Since the lending industry has been exploding, there are a wide variety of different kinds of lenders who are currently holding mortgages. Arrears are treated differently by each lender. The reputable ones will gladly work with the individual borrower to see what can be done to help him or her get the mortgage arrears caught up and current, while some of the not so reputable ones will simply want to bide their time until they can sell off the paper to a foreclosing agent. Find out which category your lender falls into by giving them a call to see what they can do for you.

If your lender is willing to work with you, you may be able to go ahead and make interest only payments for a couple of months until you get back on your feet. Conversely, you may be able to extend your mortgage loan by the number of payments that you are behind. If your lender is not willing to work with you, then you will need to seek ways to supplement your income to help bring the mortgage arrears current. While in the short run this might mean not paying other bills so as to pay your mortgage first, in the long run you may need to look at finding another job or even a second job. However, most lenders are very willing to work with the borrower. Many banks have special departments to deal with this topic alone. After all, if they work to help you, they will get paid more in the long run.

One misconception that has proven detrimental to a great many borrowers is the notion that a bankruptcy will help you to get out of your debt and allow you to keep your home. This is not the case. While you may be able to not have the home foreclosed on if you are current, you may have to give the bankruptcy trustee your home’s equity. Similarly, if you are behind in your loan or if you have liens against your property by those whom you have not paid, you will most likely have to face a foreclosure sale. Thus, a bankruptcy for the sake of bringing mortgage arrears current is not a good option.

Whenever possible, you will need to deal with mortgage arrears quickly to prevent them from building up. Stay in contact with your lender and be open to solutions even if they do not appear attractive at the time.

Author: Lester Bleich, NYS Licensed MLO, NMLS #152252

My name is Lester Bleich. I am a New York State Licensed Mortgage Loan Originator, NMLS #152252. As a mortgage finance specialist since 1987, I have been privileged to have helped well over 1000 homeowners with their home mortgage financing.

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