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When To Consider A Short Sale

When To Consider A Short Sale

People who are facing a Michigan Foreclosure frequently ask me how they should know if a short sale is their best option. That’s an easy answer. When you’ve tried everything else possible, and nothing has worked out (and your expenses exceed your income), THEN, you try a short sale. It’s a last-ditch effort when the only other alternative is foreclosure.

What else is there to try? Well, there’s a loan modification, forbearance plan, repayment plan, refinancing, private loan, getting a roommate to share expenses and even selling it to a friend or family member (not using a short sale). I put together a handy reference for REALTORS® defining these options and giving pros and cons. I included it at the end of this blog for you!

I always tell people to use a short sale as their last option before foreclosure. It doesn’t cost anything to do a short sale with us, we keep everything confidential and we won’t put you in a worse situation so you’re not losing anything if you try. Of course, your situation is unique and you have questions so give me a call and let me explain your options to you and help you figure out what is right for you.

Definitions, Pros and Cons.
1. Repayment Plan: Your lender may give you a fixed amount of time to repay the amount you are behind, plus any late fees, by adding a portion to your regular monthly payment. This may be an option if you only missed a few payments and had adequate income to make regular monthly payments again.

2. Forbearance: Your lender may agree to suspend your payments for a period of time. At the end of this time, you will resume your regular monthly payments, and you may be required to either make one lump sum payment or additional partial payments. This may be a good option if you have a temporary reduction in income and are now able to make regular payments plus lump sum or partial payments.

3. Loan Modification: Your lender may agree to reduce your interest rate, extend the term of the loan, or add missed payments to the loan balance. This may be a suitable option if the terms meet your needs and financial abilities.

4. Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure (voluntary foreclosure): You voluntarily transfer title to the lender. The lender has the option of canceling the remainder of the debt, but we’ve never seen this. But you will lose any equity in the house and may have to pay taxes on the debt forgiven (if any).

The above is referenced from this Michigan Web Resource

5. Refinance: May only be an option if you actually have equity in the house and/or one spouse was not on the original loan and is able to refinance into their name alone.

If you need help sorting through all of this, or simply realize a short sale is for you and want an immediate offer and someone to negotiate the short sale at no charge, give me a call.

Emily

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How Did I Get Here?

How Did I Get Here?

Over the past four years, I’ve talked with hundreds of homeowners about their imminent Michigan foreclosure. Their biggest question is “how did I get here?” They’ve done everything that they thought was right and made every logical choice. They usually have cut expenses, maybe gotten a part time job and gone without some “luxuries” like cable or eating out. Yet, they’re still heading into a Michigan foreclosure. Why? There are always factors that they have no control over – the poor economy, the down market, a financial hardship like job loss, divorce, disability or death of a spouse.

While I understand their question, it’s even more important to know how they’re going to get out of their situation. That’s where we step in. We can help families evaluate options, set goals and decide on a course of action. We can even start discussions with their lender after we make a cash offer, and get them back on the road to a fresh start.

If you or someone you know need help with your foreclosure situation, contact us. We will never charge you a fee and we will keep everything confidential. Let us help you get back to better times.

Emily

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Where Are Michiganders Moving To?

Where Are Michiganders Moving To?

This is possibly one of the coolest websites I’ve seen regarding relocation.

Now I’ve known that people were leaving Michigan, but I never knew where they were going, until now. I’m assuming that most are leaving for employment; especially since Michigan has such a high unemployment rate right now.

The question I have is, what are these people doing with their houses when they move? A few may be able to still afford their payment on their Michigan house and/or want to keep it and that is great. My guess is that most houses are going back to the banks because the family can no longer afford to make the house payment, especially if they are now making a house payment somewhere else.

That is unless we’re able to step in and help the family with a short sale (negotiation with their lender to accept less than what is owed) and providing a cash offer. I’m sure they’d much rather have the home sold than foreclosed upon. If you or someone you know is behind on their house payment, owe more than the house is worth and are facing a Michigan foreclosure, give us a call. We will not put you in a worse situation and there is never a fee.

Emily

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How To Tell A Friend Facing Michigan Foreclosure Her Options

How To Tell A Friend Facing Michigan Foreclosure Her Options

Sometimes it’s hard to tell the one’s you’re close to what they need to hear. Recently a very close friend of mine (Susie) found herself in a situation that she didn’t want to be in. She’s getting a divorce and neither she nor her husband can afford the mortgage payments on their own on their Michigan house. The problem: she wants to stay in the house. It was probably one of the hardest things I’ve had to do, but I had to sit down with her and show her that even she had a 0% interest rate, she still couldn’t afford the house payment.

She does have options though. She can still sell it with a short sale and hopefully walk away with a fresh start. The reason I’m sharing this with everyone is because I’m sure she’s not the only one who’s going through this. If you’re not sure if you can afford to keep your house or what your options are, please give me a call. If I was able to help Susie work through this, I can help you too.

Emily

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Lightning Does the Work

Lightning Does the Work

I was out running errands yesterday and heard a song from Chad Brock called “Lightning Does the Work”. I’ve probably heard it at least 40 times, but this time was different. I was singing along off key and it suddenly hit me- this song describes our Great Lakes Home Solutions team.

Having worked in the real estate industry for about 11 years I’ve heard many people claim that they know all about short sales and can get them negotiated without any problem and that they’re even easy. I’m here to say that they’re all wrong. In the lyrics of the song Chad sings “Thunder’s just a noise, boys, lightnin’ does the work”. I like to think of us at GLHS as the lightning. While others are busy talking about how much they know; we’re busy closing short sales (usually 3 to 8 per month). I know I’m tooting our own horn, but I think we deserve it. With an 85% success rate over the last 6 months, how can we not. If you’re looking for a team that is dedicated to helping you sell your house and stop your Michigan Foreclosure, give us a call.

Emily

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The Dreaded Winter Move

I’ve spoken to a few families that wanted to not do a short sale and ride out their redemption period.  Why? Not because it was the best for them, but because the thought of the dreaded winter move was “impossible”. I’m here to say, no it’s not. I just did it and I’m still here to tell the story. More than that, you have to understand that a short sale isn’t a fast process. If a short sale is right for you, and we start the process now, chances are pretty good that the snow will be gone by the time you move.

Don’t let the idea of the dreaded winter move stop you from making the best choice for your family. If you’re not sure what your options are when facing a Michigan foreclosure,  give me a call. I’d be happy to discuss all of your options with you.

Emily

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You’re On The Phone How Long?

If you’re anything like me, when I was trying to stop my Michigan foreclosure by myself, the worst part was trying to get through to the mortgage company. People often ask me why I’d want to spend all day at work on the phone waiting on hold to talk to someone from a lender. Well that’s a simple answer- it’s easy, because it’s not part of my job!

Melissa  is the one who spends countless hours on the phone negotiating short sales for our sellers. Honestly, I’m not sure how she does it. Not only does she do it, she does it well. She has ways of not just getting through to an actual human being, but getting results! After all, our success rate is 85% over the last 6 months (compared to the national average of only 10% of short sales closing).

If you’re looking for help and tired of wasting time on the phone with your lender, give me a call. I’m happy to discuss your options with you.

Emily

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Stop Waiting To Stop Your Michigan Foreclosure!

I just received a call from someone who realized that they need our help. She lost her job and was feeling so overwhelmed, that she didn’t want to address any of her financial issues. The only problem: once she did start to address her problem, it was too late. She said she’s known in the back of her mind that she’s needed a short sale but was just so overwhelmed, she didn’t even know where to start. Now that she’s realized that a short sale is her best and only option, it’s too late for us to help her.

Why? Foreclosures are very time sensitive. Once the lender refers the matter to an attorney to start the foreclosure, there is a legal process they must go through. However, unlike many states, the process before the foreclosures auction is relatively quick in Michigan taking weeks instead of months like some states. While we can still help you after the foreclosures auction (another relatively unique feature of a Michigan foreclosures) that time period is also dictated by law and goes incredibly fast considering everything that has to happen (contact lenders, get house listed with a REALTOR®, find a buyer, waiting for an answer from the bank, etc.). Although they vary from case to case, every minute wasted is a minute that we could have been helping you stop your Michigan foreclosure.

If you’re trying to sort out your options, please give me a call. It’s never too early to call me; I’m glad to help and to also explain your timeline to you as well as options and resources to help you make a good decision about the best plan for you. Please don’t wait to give me a call – it just may be too late if you do!

Emily

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You Can’t Benefit from a Short Sale

I recently took a call from a seller who had their hours at work cut in half and wanted to do a short sale to prevent a foreclosure on their house. They met all of the criteria for us to do the short sale. As we were finishing our conversation, they told me that they wanted to sell the house to their brother, who was going to rent it back to them. Uh, oh. No can do. I told him that he can go ahead with the short sale, but could not sell it to a family member and reside in the house again. Benefiting from a short sale would be considered mortgage fraud. This is a federal crime and the FBI is all over things like this. He was shocked, and grateful that I had told him about this as he didn’t want to break any laws or end up in a federal prison.

They decided that the short sale was still their best option and that they would work with us to find a buyer for the house- who of course isn’t related to them.

If you’re facing difficult times and need help preventing a foreclosure on your home, give me a call. I’d be happy to discuss your options with you.

Emily

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Emily, Why Did You Tell The World About Your Foreclosure?

This is a follow up to a blog that I wrote before about a Michigan foreclosure that I went through several years ago. I had a family that we’re currently helping ask me this week “Why in the world would you put that out for everyone to read, it’s such a personal issue?”

Great question. The answer- I want other people to know that they’re not the only ones who are going through a Michigan foreclosure. As much as it is a personal matter, they don’t have to go through it alone. Most importantly, as I stated in the previous blog, I want people to know THERE ARE OPTIONS!

Yes, going through a Michigan foreclosure was not one of the shining moments in my life, but, I made it through it- AND YOU WILL TOO. Don’t do what I did and try to figure it out on your own. By the time I realized that I needed an expert’s advice it was too late. Fortunately, now I have a vast knowledge of the foreclosure process, and I’m here to share it with you. Don’t wait any longer – call or email me now.

Emily

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