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Chapter 13 Bankruptcy & Foreclosure Options

If you have received a notice of foreclosure proceedings and are unsure of what to do, please call our office to speak with an attorney today. The Ohio laws have recently changed and we may be able save your house if you contact us immediately.

Below you will find a brief summary of some of the options available to you:

  • In some circumstances, you can get rid of your second mortgage or your Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC) by filing bankruptcy, which will help you make smaller payments on the house in the future. This is one of the benefits of the new bankruptcy law that a highly trained Ohio attorney can help you with. Not every state has this option so give us a call and we can see if this is an option for you.
  • A loan modification seeks to avoid foreclosure in Ohio by negotiating with the lender to modify the terms of your loan. This option makes sense in a situation where a homeowner has experienced a decline in income and can no longer afford the original loan but could afford the payments with a little adjustment. Examples of loan modifications include lowering the interest rate, extending the loan period, or adding the delinquent portion and fees back onto the principal of the loan to be repaid overtime. New federal programs now exist that may even lower your principal.
  • Oftentimes, a repayment plan is better suited to a homeowner who has had a short-term financial hardship but is now getting back on their feet. Although a homeowner is recovering, they may be several months (and thus several thousand dollars) behind on their mortgage payments and they need time to bring this amount current. Once a foreclosure has been initiated, a lender often will not accept any further payments less than the entire delinquent amount (this is so that they do not jeopardize their rights under the current foreclosure proceedings). A repayment plan requests that the lender stop the Ohio foreclosure process and structure a repayment schedule in a more lenient fashion to allow the recovering homeowner time to catch up on their loan and save their home. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy may provide an even more favorable way to bring your mortgage current.
  • A forbearance is a request that the lender stop proceeding any further with the Ohio foreclosure for a short period of time. This is usually done in conjunction with other relief efforts. For example, a lender would grant a forbearance while the homeowner tried to sell their home to cure the debt via a short sale. The filing of any type of bankruptcy gives the homeowner an “Automatic Stay” of any other legal proceedings in most cases.
  • A “short sale” is the best solution when the homeowner is “upside down” in their home due to a decline in the local real-estate market (meaning they owe more on their home than it is worth). By doing a short sale, the homeowner is asking the lender to discount their mortgage principal to a level that can be discharged by selling the home at market value. In other words, if the homeowner owes $210,000 on their mortgage, but the home is only worth $190,000 due to current real estate conditions — the homeowner would request that the lender accept the $190,000 (less closing costs) to pay off the loan. To complete a short sale, the homeowner must find a realtor or service that will be able to market their home as a short sale (often with reduced commissions) and is skilled at competently following up with the lender to handle all the details.

However, please keep in mind that if there is deficiency between what you sold the home for from what and was owed on the loan, you may be held liable. Many people do not realize this.

Mortgage creditors can continue:

  • Calling your home and work at all hours
  • Sending materials through the mail
  • Contacting your family or anyone you have put on a past credit application
  • Showing up at your door or making threats to induce payments
  • Continuing to contact you after you are represented by an attorney.

Contact Mona Rubinstein for your
consultation at 216-539-2565 

Serving Northern Ohio including Cleveland,
Akron, Canton, Youngstown and Toledo.

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