Foreclosure Defense, Foreclosures

How to Save Your Home from Foreclosure in Florida

Many Americans have been able to utilize the federal and state mortgage foreclosure moratoriums during the COVID-19 crisis to stay in their homes. But a record number of homeowners have fallen behind on their mortgage payments. According to statistics from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the number of Americans who have fallen three or more months behind on their mortgage payments increased by 250 percent in 2020, reaching a record of over two million households nationwide. These figures have not been seen since the Great Recession.  

It is estimated that the total amount owed is nearly $90 billion in deferred principal, interest, insurance, and tax payments. Financial analysts predict that the nation will soon see a wave of foreclosure lawsuits hitting the court system. However, it is possible for a consumer to stop the process from getting out of control and allow the individual to stay in his or her home.  

The first step should always be for the homeowner to reach out to his or her mortgage lender. Pursuing a foreclosure costs the lender money. In fact, they end up losing more money through that process than they would gain if they worked on a deal with the homeowner to stay in the home, which is why so many of them are more than willing to negotiate 

Many mortgage lenders are offering loan deferral programs or are either lowering or deferring interest payments for a temporary period. They may also be willing to waive late fees and penalties. The key is the homeowner needs to ask, first. The lender is not going to proactively reach out to the homeowner to see if he or she needs assistance. Ultimately, it is up to the homeowner to request this.

If the consumer has already reached out to the lender and is not able to realistically catch up on payments and late fees, it may be best to sell the property to pay back what is owed. For this plan to truly succeed, the borrower needs to price the property to sell. The longer the home stays on the market, the longer the homeowner will be behind on his or her payments, making the home even more difficult to sell.   

While the home is in default or foreclosure, the homeowner will likely be receiving mail from the court or lender regarding important dates and opportunities to make a deal on his or her payments. It is extremely important that all mail related to the home be opened immediately, be read, and if a response is required, be responded to quickly. The last thing the homeowner wants to do is miss an important court date or fail to take advantage of an opportunity if the lender is offering lower payments or a deal that could allow the person to remain in his or her home 

Lastly, to keep the home, it is important to continue making mortgage payments, if possible. Many people will take the idea of a moratorium and assume it means he or she does not have to pay on the mortgage debt during that periodThe problem is, during a moratorium, mortgage bills continue to incur, and if payments are not made, the homeowner will fall behind even more than he or she was at the start of the moratorium. The mortgage bill is arguably one of the most important payments the homeowner makes, even above other bills or debts, such as credit cards or medical debt.

Filing for bankruptcy can help. It may seem counter-intuitive, but when someone is facing foreclosure and is in the middle of a major financial crisis, bankruptcy can be a viable option to help save that person’s home. Ultimately, it depends on your specific financial situation and the type of bankruptcy you file – but bankruptcy can be used as a tool to help keep your home.

The Power of the Automatic Stay

If your home is already set for a foreclosure sale, you may be asking, “how can I make it stop?” Filing for bankruptcy can put a stop to the process or at the very least postpone it. As soon as a petition for bankruptcy is filed, the court issues an order called an “automatic stay,” which puts an immediate halt to all collection activities that were happening to the homeowner before the petition was filed. This automatic stay also applies to foreclosure cases.  Creditors (including your mortgage lender) must immediately cease collection attempts. Even if the mortgage lender has the home scheduled for a foreclosure sale, the sale will be postponed during a pending bankruptcy.

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Choosing the right attorney can make the difference between keeping your home or losing it in foreclosure. 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 

 

Foreclosure Defense, Foreclosures

Foreclosure Report 2021: What to Expect in the Coming Months

Foreclosures have been essentially at a standstill due to the moratorium issued by state and local governments on foreclosures and evictions, as well as forbearance programs to help keep families remain in their homes during this difficult time. However, these efforts will expire at some point, which has many worrying about what will happen once these programs end.  

According to the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, approximately 500,000 borrowers avoided foreclosure during the last quarter of 2020 due to various relief programs available to them, including the forbearance program offered through the CARES Act.

COVID-19, Debt Relief, Foreclosures

Biden Extends Ban on Evictions and Foreclosures through March

Shortly after being sworn in as the nation’s 46th president, Joe Biden signed several executive orders. One of these signed orders included extending the ban on evictions and foreclosures for individuals affected by the COVID-19 crisis.

This new order extends the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) moratorium that was set to expire on January 31, 2021. The CDC’s order first went into effect in September 2020. This new executive order extends the ban for at least an additional two months past the expiration date.

Foreclosure Defense, Foreclosures

Tax Implications Homeowners Facing Foreclosure Encounter from the CARES Act

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has thrown countless Americans into a financial tailspin. Many consumers were pushed out of jobs and put into the position where they are not able to pay the most basic of living expenses, including mortgage payments, to stay in their homes. As the pandemic continues, these homeowners are now put in a terrifying position, facing the real possibility that they could lose their homes.

At the start of the pandemic, lawmakers worked hard to try to keep Americans from facing this possibility by passing the CARES Act. One major part of this stimulus package was the ability for borrowers who carried federally backed mortgages to request a forbearance for up to 180 days on their loan obligations. The hope was this measure would give distressed homeowners breathing room and a chance to stay in their homes during this time of financial difficulty. If needed, borrowers could then request an additional 180 days of relief.

Foreclosure Defense, Foreclosures

Mortgage Foreclosure and Eviction Relief Extended by Governor DeSantis

The order issued by Gov. Ron DeSantis offering Floridians facing eviction or foreclosure relief has been extended through July 1, 2020. The order was issued at the start of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic to help individuals facing financial stress. Given that the economic fall-out from COVID-19 is ongoing, Governor DeSantis has extended this relief into mid-summer.

This news comes at a good time, as unemployment is still at a record high. Florida’s unemployment system has still been failing many who have applied for benefits. Thousands of individuals are still waiting to receive their unemployment so that they can pay necessary living expenses, arguably the most important of these being rent and mortgage bills.

Bankruptcy Law

Timing is Important When It Comes to Filing for Bankruptcy

When it comes to filing for bankruptcy, it is not always a matter of “if” but rather a matter of “when.” Depending on a person’s financial situation, it can pay to properly time out a bankruptcy filing. Whether it is the right time to file for bankruptcy can depend on several factors including whether someone is facing foreclosure, vehicle repossession, wage garnishment, or any of the following.

Mortgage Modification

When someone is facing foreclosure, a few different steps can be taken to delay or even prevent the process. One of these solutions is through a mortgage modification. Homeowners facing foreclosure should try this approach first before filing for bankruptcy.

Foreclosure Defense, Foreclosures

Foreclosure Rates in U.S. Dip to a 20-Year Low

 The national foreclosure rate has fallen to the lowest levels seen in two decades following housing reports from July 2019. Financial experts believe this drop is due to a stronger job market and a lower unemployment rate.

According to Bureau of Labor Statistics, the national unemployment rate fell to a 50-year low of 3.5 percent as of September 2019 with 136,000 jobs being added to the market. In addition, the hourly earning for all employees has gone up 2.9 percent from the prior year. As Americans have more money to spend, the chances of them falling short of meeting their monthly expenses also goes down.

Foreclosures

Facing Foreclosure? Here’s When You Actually Have to Move Out in Florida.

When someone receives a foreclosure notice, the first thought that often comes to that person’s mind is the fear of losing their home. A foreclosure notice does not mean that someone is automatically out of his or her home. As a homeowner in Florida, you have rights. It is important that any person in this situation understands clearly what those rights are.

Understanding the Timing

A notice of foreclosure does not mean that it will happen immediately. The homeowner has the legal right to remain in the home until the lender successfully completes all foreclosure procedures and sells the home, which can take several months, depending on the circumstances involved.

Foreclosures, Timothy Kingcade Posts

National Mortgage Delinquencies on the Decline While Foreclosure Rates Spike

Mortgage delinquencies are on the decline nationwide, according to the most recent Black Knight First Look report. The mortgage delinquency rate fell 3.75 percent for all loans in the month of January, which is down 3.45 percent from December 2018. While that decrease may not seem significant, it is when compared to one year ago. In fact, mortgage delinquencies are down nearly 13 percent from January 2018.

Black Knight, Inc., provides integrated technology services in addition to data and analytics to mortgage and real estate industries. They provide this First Look report annually to review where statistics are nationally and from state-to-state when it comes to foreclosures and mortgage delinquencies.

According to the report, approximately 1.945 million properties were 30 days or more past due in January 2019. This figure is down 68,000 from December 2018. When compared to January 2018, the numbers are down by approximately 257,000.

Additionally, Black Knight reported that 504,000 homes were at the point where they were considered “seriously delinquent,” which means the mortgages were more than 90 days past due but were not yet in foreclosure. This figure is down 7,000 when compared to December 2018 but 203,000 from January 2018.

Homes that were reported in the pre-sale inventory category, meaning homes that were in some stage of the foreclosure process, were down approximately 60,000 from December 2018 and down 72,000 from January 2018, which is in line with the rest of the trends reported. The foreclosure inventory rate was 0.51 percent of all homes still holding a mortgage. This figure shows a 2.20 percent decrease from the prior month and a 22.43 percent decrease from January 2018.

Interestingly enough, Black Knight did report that approximately 50,200 foreclosures were started in January 2019 nationwide. This figure is actually an 8.42 percent increase, as compared with December 2018. It is still down 19.42 percent, however, when compared with the previous year.

The rate for monthly prepayment was at a 10.15 percent decrease in January, as compared to December 2018. It also showed a decrease of about 25 percent from January 2018, which was also the lowest level reported since before the end of 2000.

Why is the decrease in the monthly prepayment rate significant? A prepayment is a settlement of a debt or installment payment made before the payment’s due date. It can be made for either the entire balance owed or for an upcoming payment that is paid in advance of the due date. The fact that these prepayments have gone down is unusual since prepayments are typically more common when delinquency rates decrease. It would go along with the trend for the prepayment rates to go up rather than the other way around.

Black Knight does not believe this is cause for concern since housing turnover tends to go down in January and February traditionally. Prepayments could pick up again throughout the spring so long as delinquency rates remain low or where they are.

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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.

Related Resources:

https://www.blackknightinc.com/black-knights-first-look-at-january-2019-mortgage-data/

 

Foreclosures, Timothy Kingcade Posts

Call Being Made To Halt Foreclosures During Government Shutdown

Now in its fifth week, an estimated 800,000 government employees have been caught in the political crossfire of the government shutdown. Roughly 380,000 federal workers have been furloughed and 420,000 are working without pay. Many of these individuals, who are now facing an extremely stressful financial situation due to the lack of income, were already in a difficult financial situation prior to the shutdown.

Housing advocates are urging that it is only fair that the foreclosure process is shut down while the federal government remains on a partial shutdown. In fact, 15 organizations across the U.S. are now asking the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to pause all foreclosure proceedings during the shutdown for its home loans where borrowers are behind.

This request was made this week in a letter submitted to the USDA. The USDA operates a home loan program that focuses on rural home ownership.

The USDA lending program offers options for borrowers who fall behind in their mortgage payments in an effort to avoid foreclosure. However, one of these alternatives is a servicing center that has now stopped operating during the shutdown, thus leaving these homeowners in a major bind. Without the assistance and no end in sight, these homeowners are facing the possibility of foreclosure.

In response, the advocates who have reached out to the USDA believe that a stay on foreclosure is completely justified. However, until now, the USDA has not made any public statements regarding foreclosures during the shutdown, so it is hard to say how they will respond to this most recent request.

It is estimated that there are approximately one million individuals participating in the USDA direct home loan program, as well as another million enrolled in its insured loan program. These individuals are being hit hard during the shutdown, especially those employed by the federal government. If they were in the process of a foreclosure and working with one of these now closed servicing centers, these individuals are left without any other resources.

According to CoreLogic, approximately 4.1 percent of all mortgages are considered at least 30 days past due on their payments or are in foreclosure. However, foreclosures are said to be down at this point, although they still present a problem for many Floridians as delinquent payments on mortgages are on the rise.

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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.