Receiving a notice of delinquency in the mail does not automatically mean that you are going to lose your home. Florida has what is called a judicial foreclosure process, which means that every homeowner is entitled to a hearing before the court to determine whether or not the bank is entitled to foreclose. The most important thing to remember is that the homeowner has rights. There are things you can do to slow down the foreclosure process and even keep your home, while getting your financial life back on track.
- Educate yourself. Read over everything you have received from the lender, including the mortgage itself. Many notices will contain information on foreclosure prevention options. It is only after you have not paid your mortgage for a period of 90 days that foreclosure proceedings will start. Remember, Florida is a judicial foreclosure state, meaning the lender must file a lawsuit against you before moving forward with the proceedings.
- Contact your lender. The lender will likely be willing to work with you as the foreclosure process can be lengthy and costly in Florida. There are different options they may extend to you, which include: refinancing, a repayment plan, forbearance or a loan modification.
- Contact a HUD approved housing counselor. There are federally funded agencies in each state that work with a variety of lenders to secure affordable repayment options for struggling homeowners. But with this option, beware that there are many non-legitimate companies looking to scam borrowers. Research these options carefully and use caution. Make sure you are working with a free, federally approved agency.
- Consider doing a short sale. If you do not see yourself being able to repay your mortgage with a loan modification or repayment plan, a short sale may be a good option.
- Consider filing for bankruptcy. Filing for bankruptcy will not only eliminate your unsecured debt, but as soon as you file for bankruptcy an “automatic stay” goes into effect, which stops all collection attempts and halts the foreclosure process.
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Choosing the right attorney can make the difference between whether or not you can keep your home. A well-qualified Miami foreclosure defense attorney will not only help you keep your home, but they will be able to negotiate a loan that has payments you can afford. Miami foreclosure defense attorney Timothy Kingcade has helped many facing foreclosure alleviate their stress by letting them stay in their homes for at least another year, allowing them to re-organize their lives. If you have any questions on the topic of foreclosure please feel free to contact me at (305) 285-9100. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade Garcia McMaken website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.