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4 things to know about foreclosures

The thought of losing your home might keep you awake at night. The stress of knowing that the home you worked so hard for might not be your home any longer can seem crippling. If you are facing foreclosure on your home, think about these four points as you decide how to handle the foreclosure process.

#1: Foreclosure won't go away without action

You can't simply ignore a foreclosure and hope that it will go away. Instead, you have to take action to stop it. Be sure that you read all documentation that you receive regarding the foreclosure. Take note about any deadlines or requirements on the paperwork you receive. As tempting as it is to just ignore the foreclosure, doing so will lead to you becoming more and more behind on the payments. The further behind you are, the harder it is to catch up.

#2: Your lender might work with you

Your lender might be willing to work with you to help you get caught up on your payments. This is typically a more cost-effective option for lenders since they don't have to go through the process of having to sell the property.

Be realistic about what you can do when you speak to the lender. Your goal is to get the account current and keep it current. Before you contact your lender, learn about your legal rights and responsibilities. Create a realistic budget so that you can accurately gauge what range of payments is possible with your current income and expenses. You might have to make some sacrifices to get the mortgage caught up. Keeping your home might make those sacrifices, such as selling some other assets, worth it.

#3: Foreclosure recovery scams are common

Unscrupulous people try to take advantage of those who are facing foreclosure by trying to hook them into foreclosure recovery scams. Be wary of deals that seem too good to be true and unsolicited offers. One sign that a party is trying to defraud you is if they tell you to make payments to them and they will pay the lender. Always research possible solutions before you make any agreement to ensure you are dealing with a legal foreclosure recovery program.

#4: You might have legal options to prevent foreclosure

You might have legal options to help you prevent a foreclosure. Loan modification, forbearance and other options might be possible. In some cases, even filing for bankruptcy might help you to avoid having your house taken in a foreclosure.

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