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Our goal is to keep you in your home, foreclosure will only be considered after all other options have been exhausted.

We want you to have the facts about your options. There are several payment alternatives available that you may qualify for that may help you stay in your home.

Foreclosure is the legal process by which a lender takes possession of the mortgaged property when the borrower fails to make monthly payments in a timely way or otherwise violates the loan agreement. We never want to foreclose on a customer’s home. Only when all other options are exhausted will we initiate the foreclosure process. Foreclosure will affect your credit score and possibly your ability to obtain financing in the future.

The action of the lender to refrain from exercising a legal right, especially enforcing the payment of a debt. An example would be a temporary reduction or suspension of payments on a loan, followed by an arrangement to cure the delinquency.

Repayment Plan
This is a type of Forbearance in which an arrangement is reached to repay past due amounts over a period of time in conjunction with regular monthly mortgage payments.

One or more of your existing loan terms may be changed in order to help. This could include: a change in mortgage loan type (such as from an adjustable to a fixed), an extension of the mortgage terms, a step rate, capitalization of delinquent amounts, and/or reduction of your interest rate.

Partial Claims
For FHA Loans only, your lender may be able to work with you to obtain a one-time payment from the FHA Insurance Fund to bring your mortgage current.

Scam artists have stolen millions of dollars from distressed homeowners by promising immediate relief from foreclosure or demanding cash for counseling services when HUD-approved counseling agencies provide the same services for FREE.

If you receive an offer, information or advice that sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Remember, help can be found FREE.

How to Spot a Scam – beware of a company or person who:

  • Asks for a fee in advance to work with your lender to modify, refinance or reinstate your mortgage.
  • Guarantees they can stop a foreclosure or have your loan modified.
  • Advises you to stop paying your mortgage company and pay them instead.
  • Pressures you to sign over the deed to your home or sign any paperwork that you haven’t had a chance to read, and you don’t fully understand.
  • Claims to offer “government-approved” or “official government” loan modifications.
  • Asks you to release personal financial information online or over the phone.

How to Report a Scam – do one of the following:

  • Go to  and fill out the Loan Modifications Scam Prevention Network’s (LMSPN) complaint form online and get more information on how to fight back.
    • Note: you can also fill out this form and send to the fax number/email/address (your choice) on the back of the form.
  • Call (888) 995-HOPE (4673) and tell the counselor you believe you’ve been the victim of a scam or you know someone who has.

Pre-foreclosure or Short Sale
Occurs when a property is listed for sale and proceeds of the sale are accepted in exchange for a release of the lien, even if those proceeds are less than the amount owed.

Deed-In-Lieu of Foreclosure
This option voluntarily transfers the title and possession of the property to the Lender in order to satisfy the mortgage loan debt and avoid foreclosure.

Am I eligible?
Every situation is unique, and will be reviewed carefully to determine if foreclosure is the only possible remedy. Use this list as a general guideline of the information we look at to determine if you qualify for a payment alternative.

  • You must demonstrate an involuntary inability to pay
  • Account in question must be a mortgage or home equity line of credit (no overdraft lines of credit)
  • Home must not be vacant or condemned
  • Property must be a 1 – 4 family dwelling

Credit scores are a concern for most of us.  can help you understand what makes up a credit score, what affects it and what you can do to maintain good credit.
Be advised that as a lender/servicer, we are required to report the current status of your loan. Any missed payments or loss mitigation option will affect your credit.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has provided an extensive list of HUD-approved credit counseling agencies who can help evaluate your situation and address your needs. They can help you develop a budget, provide recommendations for freeing up cash, and provide housing counseling assistance.

Visit the official page containing tips for avoiding foreclosure as well as summaries of various government programs designed to help lower your monthly mortgage payment, modify or refinance your loan, transition to more affordable housing and more. is an official Fannie Mae website filled with helpful information about every phase of home ownership, including detailed advice and resources for avoiding foreclosure, deciding whether to stay in your home or leave it, understanding reverse mortgages, and helpful advice for those who are already in foreclosure.

This site provides step-by-step information on how to become financially literate in order to make informed financial decisions. Learn about credit reports and scores, see the true cost of owning a home, compare the costs of renting vs owning, and get in-depth, easy-to-read home loan product information.

County Resources
Visit your county’s official web page to learn about the financial programs and related resources they may have to offer.

An official program from the Department of the Treasury and HUD, this site is filled with helpful information and valuable programs that can help you avoid foreclosure, lower your monthly mortgage payments, modify a second mortgage or apply for mortgage assistance if you are unemployed.

This site provides information on taxes, grants, housing finance reform, the Recovery Act, the Making Home Affordable program and much more. You’ll also find links to other helpful government bureaus.

Visit the official site of United Way’s 2-1-1 / First Call For Help initiative. This free community service provides confidential information and referrals for help with food, housing, employment, health care, counseling and more. Click to visit the site, or simply call 2-1-1 to get started.

Foreclosure Prevention

You need to borrow money to pay for your children’s college education. Alternatively, maybe you want to pay down your high-interest credit card debt or add a master bedroom addition to the top floor of your home. One way to do so is to tap into the equity you’ve built up in your home. Building up equity is one of the most important benefits of owning a home. As you pay off your mortgage, you gradually build equity. Simply put, equity is the amount of your home that you actually own. For example, if you have a house worth $200,000 and you owe $150,000 on your mortgage, you have equity of $50,000. You can access that equity in one of two ways, through a home equity loan or a home equity line of credit. Home equity loan A home equity loan is a second mortgage. When you apply for a home equity loan, you’ll receive a single lump sum. You then pay that sum back over a set period of years. The size of your home equity loan will be limited, of course, by the amount of equity you have in your home. The interest rate attached to a home equity loan remains constant throughout the life of the loan. Home equity line of credit Consumers often confuse home equity lines of credit — better known as HELOCs — with home equity loans. However, a HELOC works more like a credit card than a mortgage loan. With a HELOC, you’ll receive a set credit limit. You only pay back the amount of money that you borrow, plus interest. For instance, if you have a HELOC with a credit limit of $50,000 and you borrow $10,000 from it, you’ll only have to pay back that $10,000. You’ll still have $40,000 worth of credit available to you after you’ve borrowed the $10,000. The interest rate on a HELOC is usually tied to the prime rate. Often, the rate will be 1 percent over prime. Which is better? So, which product is better? Not surprisingly, that depends on the individual borrower and the individual situation. Many economists say that a home equity loan is better suited to borrowers who need funds for a specific purchase, such as college tuition or a major kitchen remodel. Since a home equity loan features a fixed interest rate, such a product might be better for those borrowers uncomfortable with uncertainty. A home equity line of credit, though, provides more flexibility. Homeowners do not have to tap into their credit unless they need it. Because of this, many homeowners use a HELOC as an emergency fund, quick cash in the case of an emergency. A HELOC might be the right choice, too, for borrowers taking on a multi-year renovation project. These borrowers can then tap their HELOC whenever they need to write a check to move the project toward completion. The key is to do your research before choosing either a HELOC or home equity loan. Only by studying your spending habits and needs will you be able to make the right equity decision.

Home Equity Loans vs Lines of Credit

Your credit reports are important documents. They list your open credit-card accounts, loan balances and financial missteps. Reviewing these reports on a regular basis is a smart financial decision. After all, the information contained in these reports is the same information that banks and lenders use when determining whether you qualify for loans and at what interest rates. If you’re wondering why your application for a mortgage loan was rejected or why you only qualify for credit cards with sky-high interest rates, the answers might lie in your three credit reports. Fortunately, you can access your credit reports on an annual basis. Three credit bureaus compile credit reports on you, TransUnion, Experian and Equifax. The reports kept by each of these credit bureaus might vary, so it’s a smart idea to review all three reports at least once every year. The good news is that under federal law you are entitled to one free copy of each of your three credit reports once a year. You can access these free copies at the Web site, If you want to review your credit reports more than once a year, you’ll have to pay each of the credit bureaus for your extra copies, usually at a price around $9.99 for each report. Reading the report Once you have your credit reports, it’s time to read them. The reports will let you know exactly why lenders consider you either a good or bad lending risk. Each of your credit reports will start out with basic information about you. This basic identifying information will include your name, Social Security number, previous and current addresses, date of birth, phone numbers, employer’s name and spouse’s name. Make sure that this information is correct. Next comes a more critical part of the reports, your credit history. This section of the report lists open lines of credit and loans in your name. If you have a mortgage, it will be listed on the report. So will credit-card accounts, car loans and student loans. This section will also include the amounts of money that you owe, whether to your mortgage lender or your credit-card companies, how much credit is available to you and how well you’ve managed your loans and credit. This last part is important: Your credit report will list whether you often make your payments two weeks late. It will also list whether you’ve missed payments completely. These financial mistakes will lower your three-digit credit score. Again, if you find information in this section of your report that seems incorrect, make sure to make a note of it. Fixing these mistakes with the credit bureaus can boost your credit score. Next comes the public records section of your credit report. Ideally, this part of your report is blank because it lists such negative financial judgments as bankruptcies and foreclosures. These negative judgments can damage your credit score even more severely than will late or missed payments. The final section of the credit report is the inquiries section. This is a list of everyone who has asked to see your credit report. For instance, if you call TransUnion and ask for a copy of your report, it will show up in the inquiries section. If your local credit union asks for your report before agreeing to provide you with a car loan, that inquiry will be in the report, too. Errors It’s important to quickly correct any errors that you discover in your credit reports. Remember, the information on your credit report is used to compile your three-digit credit score. And if this score is low, banks and lenders either won’t lend you money or they’ll do so only while charging you higher interest rates. If you remove errors from your reports — maybe you closed that open credit-card account three years ago or maybe you never did miss that car payment listed as delinquent four months ago — it will have a positive impact on your score. To remove an error, though, you must correct it in writing and send that information directly to the offending credit bureau. You can’t remove errors through e-mail or through a phone call. A credit report might seem like an intimidating document. But once you understand its parts, this report actually provides you with a good roadmap of how lenders and banks see you.

Understanding Your Credit Report

It’s tempting when you pay so many of your bills online to skip on balancing your paper checkbook. After all, balancing the checkbook is no one’s idea of a good time. And with electronic banking now so popular, it’s easy for most consumers to quickly check their balances online. This doesn’t mean, though, that it’s still not important to balance your checkbook on a regular basis. Yes, you can check your balances online if you’re a fan of electronic banking. But what if you’ve forgotten about that $350 car payment and your financing company hasn’t cashed the check yet? You might mistakenly think you have more money in your account than you really have. That can lead to financial disaster: bounced checks and the fees that come with them. Don’t fear, though. Balancing your checkbook isn’t as bad a task as it seems. In fact, with some basic bookkeeping abilities, you can quickly and accurately balance your checkbook to make sure that you never accidentally drain your funds. Be a good record keeper Balancing your checkbook all starts with keeping good records. This means that you must keep track of every time you use your debit card to fill up your gas tank, write a check to your mortgage company or withdraw $20 in spending money from the local ATM. As soon as you return home after making these purchases, writing these checks or withdrawing that cash, write down the amounts you’ve removed from your checking account in your checkbook’s paper ledger. And write down these amounts exactly, down to the last cent. You need to know exactly how much money is in your checkbook if you hope to balance it. Ask for your bank statement Before balancing your checkbook, you’ll need access to your most recent bank statement. This could be simple if your bank offers online checking. Simply log onto your bank’s Web site, type in your user name and password and call up your current account balance. The odds are your bank will list your current balance and your most recent statements. If you don’t have access to electronic banking, you’ll either have to stop in or call your bank to request your most recent bank statement. Your bank might also send you your account statements on a regular basis, usually once a month. You can use that statement, but only if it’s not more than a few days old. If it’s too old, there will be too many transactions that aren’t listed on the statement. What’s cleared? Next, you need to check your checkbook ledger to determine which of your payments haven’t yet cleared. For instance, if you mailed a check to your daughter’s preschool for $500 and the school hasn’t yet cashed it, you’ll need to note this when balancing your checkbook. Your account might have $4,000 in it. But you’ll need to subtract that $500 preschool payment from this balance to have an accurate record of where you stand financially. You’ll need to do the same if you’ve made deposits to your checking account that haven’t yet cleared. For instance, a client may have sent you $500 through PayPal. Deposits made through PayPal usually take up to three business days to actually get into your checking account. When balancing your checkbook, make sure to account for these deposits, too. Remember, you don’t have to be an accountant to balance your checkbook. You just need to be willing to take a small amount of time on a regular basis — once a week or once a month, perhaps — to track what you’ve spent and what you’ve earned.

Balancing a Checking Account

Whether you are applying for a mortgage, car or personal loan, your lender will want to know one number: your three-digit credit score. This number has become perhaps the most important for anyone seeking a loan. There’s a reason for this: Your three-digit credit score tells lenders exactly what kind of a borrower you’ve been. Have you been a sloppy user, one who pays bills late or misses payments on a regular basis? Your credit score will show it. Have you been a responsible borrower, one who’s never paid a credit card bill late or missed a car loan payment? Your credit score will show that, too. Before applying for any loan, then, it is important to understand the basics of your credit score and what it means. Scoring Most lenders today rely on the FICO credit-scoring system. This three-digit score ranges from a low of 350 to a high of 850. If you want to borrow money, and you want to borrow it at the lowest possible rate, you’ll need a score closer to the higher end than the lower. What does your FICO score include? According to, your credit score is based on your payment history, or how often you miss payments or pay your bills late. The amount of debt you owe, the length of your credit history and the types of credit that you use will also impact your credit score. The most important of these factors is your payment history, which FICO says accounts for 35 percent of your credit score. Coming in a close second is the amount of debt you owe, which accounts for 30 percent of your score. The lesson here? If you want an excellent credit score, you need to pay your bills on time, never miss a payment and pay down as much of your credit card debt as possible. Of course, other factors will negatively impact your credit score. If you lose a home to foreclosure, you can expect your score to drop by 100 or more points. That foreclosure will remain on your credit report for seven years. If you declare bankruptcy, your score will again fall by 100 or more points. Depending on the type of bankruptcy that you file, this filing will remain on your credit report for seven to 10 years. What lenders want Though it varies by lender, most lenders reserve their lowest interest rates for those borrowers whose FICO credit score is 740 or higher. That is considered an excellent score by most lenders. If your credit score falls below 640, though, you might struggle to obtain a conventional mortgage loan. That is because lenders worry that borrowers with such low scores are more likely to miss payments and default on their loans. If you want to qualify for today’s lowest interest rates, you’ll need to bring an excellent credit score to the table. If you know you have a low score, it might make more sense to establish a history of paying your bills on time and cutting down on your credit card debt before you borrow again. You will benefit financially when you apply for that next mortgage, car or personal loan.

What Your Credit Score Means

Credit cards provide you with financial freedom. However, if you do not use them correctly, these cards can also leave you with mounds of debt and a bad credit score. The problem? If you charge items on your credit card and then don’t pay them off when your next statement arrives, you’ll be charged interest. That interest can add up more quickly than you think. Interest Say you purchase an item — anything from a TV to an audio system to a home computer — that costs $1,000. Even if you have an attractive rate of 10 percent on your card, you might still pay more than $100 in interest charges depending upon how quickly you pay off your purchase. For example, if you pay only the minimum monthly balance on your credit card of $40, it will take you 29 months at an interest rate of 10 percent to pay back your $1,000 purchase. While paying this back, you’ll be charged $126 in interest. This means that your $1,000 purchase actually cost you $1,126. It gets worse with higher rate credit cards. Consider if you made the same purchase with a card with an interest rate of 25 percent and you made just the $40 minimum monthly payment. It would take you 36 months to pay back your purchase. Over that time, you’d be charged $427 in interest, making the total cost of your purchase $1,427. Minimum payment This is why it is always important to pay more than the minimum monthly payment. The University of Minnesota says that most credit card companies charge a minimum monthly payment of 4 percent to 6 percent of the card’s total debt. This means that, depending on the size of your debt if you make only the minimum payment each month, you might not pay off your credit card debt in your lifetime.

Understanding Credit Costs