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The Truth about Foreclosures

Aug 17, 2007
Here are some common misconceptions about foreclosures; busted.

The bank does not really want your house, even though they may appear as the villain, they just want the money that you owe them. In general, most banks hate having to go through the process of foreclosure and wasting their resources on it. Most are quite willing to work with homeowners to avoid foreclosure. Avoiding the bank because you think they are after your house is the biggest mistake you can make.

At some point in time, the bank may say they will not accept further payments if you do not pay your arrears in full. You can still try to work out a payment plan with the bank or get a mortgage negotiation professional, to help you negotiate paying a portion of the arrears, putting a plan in place to pay future current payments and pay the remaining arrears over time. The foreclosure process will be suspended as long as you stick to the plan.

Many people think that the moment they receive a foreclosure notice they will have to move out of their home. However, the truth is that most states have quite a long foreclosure process, during which you stay in your home. After the foreclosure has closed, there is an eviction hearing. You can stay and fight through this entire process, if you wish to.

People also think that no bank will refinance them, if they are already in foreclosure. However, if you have enough accrued equity, specialty lenders do exist, who will refinance your house paying off the bank and putting a stop to the foreclosure. People believe that if they go through a foreclosure once, they will never be able to buy a house again. It is true that foreclosures are viewed as the worst thing you can have on your credit report, but some banks do offer loans very soon after a foreclosure. Keep in mind though, that they will require very large down payments and charge much higher interest rates than normal. In time, if you manage to rebuild your credit rating, you can get rates as if the foreclosure has not happened.

A chapter 7 bankruptcy, people believe, will completely stop foreclosure proceedings and save the house. Although a chapter 7 bankruptcy stops the home foreclosure temporarily, you will eventually have to do something to work out the problems to keep the house in the long run. Homeowners think that if they come up with creative ideas the bank will go along with their plans. However, organizations involve complex bureaucratic structures and specific accepted procedures. It is best to come up with a plan within the available formats and parameters that the bank is used to working with, get professional help if necessary.

People try to do everything they can to save the house and insist on living in the house in the meantime. In fact, the whole procedure can be avoided completely by having a deed in lieu of foreclosure negotiation. Through this, both parties agree on terms for returning the ownership of the house to the bank in a non adversarial manner.
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