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Three Key Components to Surviving Michigan Foreclosure

Three Key Components to Surviving Michigan Foreclosure

Some sellers think that if they just give the keys to the lender, they can walk away and start fresh. Just a reminder that you did sign a binding contract for your mortgage and it is big bucks. Your lender can wait until you are in better times and may make efforts to collect that debt. It’s a tough fact to face but you can protect your financial future. So how do you survive a Michigan foreclosure? Here are some key components:

Don’t make rash decisions based on fear and panic. This is one of the biggest mistakes that people make and can be the most damaging. Take a piece of paper and write down the issues and weigh everything out. Is it inevitable that you will need to move? Then you must accept and move towards that goal.

Don’t do nothing! The ol’ “Head in the Sand” plan is not the right move . On the contrary. Keep your eyes and ears very keen and sharp and learn all you can about foreclosure options. One will fit your situation. If you make some money, you might be able to do a loan modification but the odds are unfortunately low (less than 6% was the last statistic that I saw). If you have lost most of your money, you need to get a plan together to move on and find out about alleviating the debt. That will lead you to a short sale which is also the most popular solution when a loan modification doesn’t succeed.

Pursue a solution. Above all else, don’t be shy to ask questions from experts in the field. We offer our services to hundreds of sellers, at no charge, because we know there is a lot of misinformation out there. Grab a pad of paper and call. We will help you decide what solution is best for you and your family to lead to a better future and make the pain go away.

Jeannie

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Myths About Michigan Foreclosure Can Affect Your Financial Future

Myths About Michigan Foreclosure Can Affect Your Financial Future

The pain is so great when you realize that you are going to lose the house. You’ve talked to your lender until you are in need of some Valium; you’ve lost a ton of sleep. Now your health and marriage is affected. It’s time to get off the merry-go-round and solve this problem. Before we solve it, let’s look at some facts:

MYTH #1: “I’ll work out a Loan Modification with my lender” There are some cases of loan modifications working but they are few and far between (less than 10% using the government’s own statistics). If they worked, you wouldn’t see so many bank owned properties littering our cities. Remember, you owe several months behind in your payment. That’s a lot of money and the lender is not going to forget that.

MYTH #2: “I’ll make partial payments until I can catch up.” Save your money! Lenders will more than likely send it back anyway. They want full payments or you are going into default and facing foreclosure anyway. Many times they return full payments if you are behind.

MYTH #3: “I’ll just hand over the keys to the lender and walk away from the debt. What can they do to me? I don’t have the money.” Unfortunately you can’t just walk away from your debt in Michigan. You signed a binding contract with your lender to borrow a huge amount of money. That doesn’t just go away. Somehow you have to get the bank to agree not to pursue you for the money. They can come after that money for 7 years into your future! They can garnish your future wages, tack liens on to future properties…not pretty. We’ve got answers though. Read on.

There are few options for struggling homeowners facing foreclosure but there is one hope that works for many. You can short sale the house. That means selling the house for what a buyer will buy it for in today’s market and negotiating with your lender to forgive the rest of the debt. Forget what you’ve heard about short sales (and the national 10-20% success rate). We have an 85% success rate in short sales negotiating.

Contact us to discuss your situation and see what will work for you! We are here to help!

Jeannie

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Is 2011 THE Year Michigan Foreclosures Ease Up?

Is 2011 THE Year Michigan Foreclosures Ease Up?

A lot of people are asking us if 2011 is the year when the number of Michigan foreclosures will start to decrease and Michigan’s housing market and economy will start to recover. Sorry to say, not according to this Associated Press article. In fact, this article predicts that 2011 will be worse than 2010 because about 5 million people are at least 2 months behind on their house payment and many more are expected to get behind because the economy is still putting a lot of pressure on families. These numbers are nationwide foreclosures. However, Michigan is predicted to remain in the top 10 of states with the highest foreclosure rates and many analysts say Michigan is in the top 5.

What does this mean to you if you are facing a Michigan foreclosure or know someone facing a Michigan foreclosure? Don’t expect to dodge the foreclosure for long. The article points out that most banks have resumed foreclosures after a slow down late last year due to allegations of improper procedures. How soon they come after you after you miss your first payment is hard to say. Don’t wait for them to start the Michigan foreclosure process before you figure out your course of action. Give us a call and let us help you figure out your options now.

We will not charge you any money, we will not put you in a worse situation and we will keep everything confidential. We simply want to help make 2011 the year that you took action to get your family back on a better financial road. For most families, since the mortgage is their biggest expense and debt, figuring out what to do with the house payment takes a huge burden off their shoulders. Give us a call today and let us help you say that 2011 was THE year that you got back to better times!

Ann

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Myth Busting: “The Michigan Sheriff Sale”

Myth Busting: “The Michigan Sheriff Sale”

I attended the Kalamazoo County (Michigan) Sheriff Sale (foreclosure auction) today for the first time in over a year. It seemed fitting to blog about common questions concerning the Sheriff Sale to dispel some myths. When a person gets behind on their house payment and is facing a Michigan Foreclosure, they will eventually get a foreclosure letter from an attorney notifying them that a sheriff sale has been scheduled. This notice is also taped to the front door and also published for 4-5 weeks in a county newspaper.

Myth Bust #1: “I can’t remove the Michigan Foreclosure notice Read more…

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The #1 Largest Mistake Struggling Homeowners Make – Part 2

The #1 Largest Mistake Struggling Homeowners Make – Part 2

If you are a homeowner facing a Michigan foreclosure and trying to stay current on your mortgage but can’t, this is a critical time for you to make decisions and the right ones. After counseling thousands of distressed families, we have seen one major mistake made over and over again. This mistake literally can ruin your financial future faster than anything else you can do.

This mistake comes from a combination of lack of knowledge about foreclosures and lenders and how they work and also this big emotion: FEAR. The #1 mistake you can make is Read more…

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The #1 Largest Mistake Struggling Homeowners Make – Part 1

The #1 Largest Mistake Struggling Homeowners Make – Part One

If you are a homeowner facing a Michigan foreclosure and trying to stay current on your mortgage but can’t, this is a critical time for you to make decisions and the right ones. After counseling thousands of distressed families, we have seen one major mistake made over and over again. This mistake literally can ruin your financial future faster than anything else you can do.

This mistake comes from a combination of lack of knowledge about foreclosures and lenders and how they work and also this big emotion: FEAR. The #1 mistake you can make Read more…

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Get A Grip on Your Michigan Foreclosure

Get A Grip on Your Michigan Foreclosure

I’ve been negotiating for folks with late mortgage payments and personal heartache for a long time and Michigan has been especially hard hit. The good news is that there is “the other side” of your personal financial tragedy. Keep reminding yourself of that. You are only going through a problem and with some help, you don’t have to be there for very long.

The key is that your decisions today will affect your financial freedom and future of tomorrow. Making the right decisions is critical and hard to do when you are emotionally wrought. So take these steps to insure Read more…

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Hey, What’s The Deal With You Guys?

Hey, What’s The Deal With You Guys?

Many times when I answer the phone, the first thing I hear is “What kind of company is this”. I explain that our mission is to provide solutions to families facing foreclosure throughout Michigan in a timely and respectful manner. We do this by walking people through a few steps.

  1. What are your goals? Are you trying to keep the house or realize this is no longer feasible and just want to get out from under the debt?
  2. What has happened to get you to this point? Chances are if you are facing a Michigan foreclosure, some sort of hardship (job loss, divorce, disability, etc) has occurred. Is it over or will it be over soon? The more information we have on where you are at, the better we can help you figure out how to move forward.
  3. What are your options? People are often confused about their options. The confusion can come from not knowing the options. This is where we help by providing education and information. Confusion can also come from not clearly defining your goals (see step one). Once you are clear on your goals and have the right information, the options are clearer too.

Navigating through a Michigan foreclosure can be like trying to get somewhere you have never been without a map. To get to a new destination, you have to figure out where you want to go (your goal), where you are starting at and your options for getting to your destination or goal. We can help provide that road map. We do this while keeping all your information confidential, without putting you in a worse situation and working harder than anyone to help you. (That’s the timely and respectful part of our mission statement.) Give us a call today and find out first- hand what kind of company we are and let us help you get back to better times. I think you will be glad you called!

Ann

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All in a Day’s Work – Many Michigan Sellers Want Short Sales

All in a Day’s Work – Many Michigan Sellers Want Short Sales

Let me tell you about some calls I took yesterday to show you what goes on around here in a typical day.

Colin called (not his real name). He had talked to us back in May when he was already several months behind on his house payment. At that time, he wanted to do a work out and try to save his house and he was going to work with another company. However, he was unsuccessful because the financial hardship he had experienced (cut back in hours at work) was not over and the bank would not work with him – he simply needed a payment far less than what was possible. Now, he has been notified that he is facing a Michigan Foreclosure and he wants to do something to at least save his credit, since he is not able to save the house. Fortunately for Colin, we should be able to help him with that by writing an offer to purchase it right away and negotiating the short sale without charging him.

Patty called (not her real name). She missed several months of work due to a disability and got behind on the house payment. Now she is back to work and able to make the house payment again. The lender is willing to work with her and reinstate her loan if she can come up with several thousand dollars to bring the loan current. She called looking for advice on how to find the money if a relative is not able to help. I referred her to Kalamazoo Neighborhood Housing Services (read about them here)  since her situation is something they are better equipped to handle than we are. She was grateful for the referral.

Jason called (not his real name). He owns a business and business has been bad for many, many months forcing him to live on his savings. His savings is almost depleted and he is now several months behind on his house payment and facing a Michigan foreclosure. Jason was very anxious about the letters he has been receiving from his lender’s attorneys. I was able to explain to him what is happening and what to expect going forward with the foreclosure process. I explained to him about the Michigan redemption period and his options before and after the Sheriff auction. I even arranged to send a REALTOR® over to his house (one that specializes in distressed properties) to give him an accurate value of what the house is worth (since he doesn’t know the value in today’s market). Jason has some decisions to make on what he wants to do and now he has the information to make informed decisions. I could hear the relief in his voice as we hung up.

From my perspective, yesterday wasn’t so unusual, as we have been helping Michigan homeowners like Colin, Patty & Jason daily for 5 years now. It sounded like yesterday was unusual for Colin, Patty & Jason because they finally got some answers and direction. From their feedback and feedback I get from others, apparently there aren’t a lot of companies/people out there willing to listen and take the time to educate and discuss options with homeowners facing a Michigan foreclosure. That is why we are here, to help. We will never ask for any money and we keep all information confidential. Give us a call today and see how we can help you. Come on, make our day (and yours too)!

Ann

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How To Get The House Market To Work For You vs. Against You

How To Get The House Market To Work For You vs. Against You

Some of you may have read or heard on the news about the investigations into the foreclosure processes of several of the largest mortgage servicers. The investigators are looking into the validity and accuracy of the foreclosures that have taken place over the last few months and years. Apparently, there are suspicions that shortcuts were taken by the servicers that had millions of defaulted loans. The problem is that the servicers were unprepared for the volume of defaulted loans to deal with, and they were scrambling to address the defaults in bulk instead of reviewing each situation individually. Due to the investigation, some of the servicers have halted any further foreclosure proceedings (many of these have started the proceedings back up).

What does that mean for you? Well, if you are currently in default, it could mean you will be able to stay in the house for a little longer. But for sellers who need to sell now or who will need to sell in the next few years, it could be bad news.

The result of servicers’ decision to suspend foreclosures will simply delay the inevitable. These foreclosures will happen eventually, and the distressed properties will need to be sold. This action is just keeping distressed houses on the market longer. So, if all these houses were on the market in a smaller amount of time, prices would be extraordinarily low, but for less time. It’s essentially just biting the bullet and getting this price decline over more quickly. Maybe in this scenario, we could see price increases in the next two years; whereas with the current developments, it could be five or six years before the market picks back up.

If you’re a victim of the current declining market or foresee difficulties in selling your house in the near future, give us a call today. We’ll see how we can help you make the market work for you instead of against you.

Melissa

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