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What You Can Do To Avoid Foreclosure by Gary Giardina

Are your behind in your mortgage payments? Are you receiving calls from your bank looking for their money? Do you find yourself robbing Peter to pay Paul?

If any of the above scenarios describe you, you may be headed on your way to foreclosure. The first thing you should do, or shouldn't do, is not to ignore the warning signs. If you're receiving phone calls and letters from your bank, then by all means respond to the inquiries. Since you did sign on the dotted line when you purchased the house, they have a legal right to come after you about their money that you borrowed from them.


If you don't tackle it then, you will continue to get frustrated. It will be more difficult for the bank to assist you and eventually, you won't have a house to come home to.

Talk with your bank about alternative options. The last thing any financial institution wants to do is lose money on residential real estate. They would prefer that you keep your home, because it is a viable investment. Besides, the bank is in this to make money, not lose money.

Read over your mortgage documents. That way, you'll know what legal recourse the bank has in the event you can't make your mortgage payments. Do some research on what the foreclosure laws are. Each state is different, so you'll have to check out information for where you live.

Contact the Federal Government for assistance. Check with HUD (Housing and Urban Development) to get more information on counseling services regarding foreclosure. They can help you with options and also negotiate with your lender if need be.

If you have anything of value that you can use to put toward your mortgage, then by all means do so. You may have to sell one of your vehicles, expensive jewelry, or borrow from your insurance policy. However, it's better to stick with the first two options as opposed to borrowing from your policy. The value on it can decrease when you borrow against it.

Make of list of all of your expenses. There may be some areas where you can cut back. You may have to temporarily suspend cable or satellite services, shopping or eating out. The latter two can eat up your budget if you're not careful. You should also consider temporarily canceling any memberships that you may have, such as fitness centers or golf outings.

When it's been made known that your house is facing foreclosure, so-called foreclosure prevention companies come out of the woodwork. Most, if not all of these are a scam. They do nothing but put you further in the hole by charging you a ridiculous fee.

All they do is take your money and run. They don't intervene with your bank as promised, and you will end up losing your house for sure. You can get the assistance you need for free through the Federal Government.

In addition to foreclosure prevention scams, there are people who will prey on the "down-on-their-luck" sector and make promises of halting your foreclosure process. What happens is that you end up giving them your house when you sign on the dotted line. The house no longer is in your name and you're now a renter instead of a homeowner. If you don't understand what you're signing, then don't do it. Consult with legal counsel, or a representative from Housing and Urban Development.

You can keep your home from being taken back by the bank. Following these tips can help prevent you from being homeless.

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