Give Yourself the Gift of Mortgage Mediation this Christmas (or New Years)
While many families are celebrating the season with hearts full of peace and joy, it can actually be a stressful and discouraging time for families under economic distress. Many homeowners are still facing foreclosure, having never recovered from the downturn that began in 2008.
However, Advantage Legal Group is here to shed some light on your holiday season by letting you know about a law that can help you mediate and resolve those problems. This law is four years old but many still don’t know about it or how to take advantage of it. The law is the Foreclosure Fairness Act that was put into law in 2011.
This law provides an opportunity for most homeowners to force most mortgage companies to come to the table and negotiate a solution that works for everybody. So few people have taken advantage of this law. It is highly recommended that if you or someone you know can be helped with this law that you take advantage of it by contacting Advantage Legal right away!
OLD PAYMENT: $3185.01 at 5.875% fixed rate
NEW PAYMENT: $1999.24 at 4.125% fixed rate
REDUCTION OF: $1185.77
And that’s just one of many ways Advantage Legal is bringing the Merry back to Christmas for so many families this year.
Begin writing your Christmas Wish List now and start crossing off your MUST HAVE gifts to yourself and your family this holiday season.
YOUR CHRISTMAS WISH LIST:
– Call Advantage Legal at 1-877-MEDIATION
– FREE consultation with Advantage Legal
– Monthly savings!
– Peace of Mind!
– Holly Jolly Christmas!
Ready to schedule a consultation? 425-452-9797 Or Contact Us Here
Advantage Legal Group is in the business of helping people that are in financial distress either modify their existing mortgage, refinance or find a way to mediate between the lender and the homeowner. We get asked quite often if homeowners can refinance after a mortgage modification.
A mortgage modification is typically handled between a housing counselor or a qualified attorney and the homeowner and lender. The homeowner cannot go to the lender directly and ask for this mediation but must do so with a housing counselor or lawyer. This is where Advantage Legal Group comes into play. We talk to the lenders for you and make them come to the table to discuss options to either lower your mortgage payment permanently or for a short amount of time. We can modify your existing term, save you thousands and get you caught up on any past mortgage payments.
Often times we get asked if people can refinance after they’ve already had a mortgage modification. Refinancing may not have been an option initially but now that they have dealt with the modification for several months they may want to refinance. Some homeowners that have gone through the Home Affordable Modification Program may now want to refinance to a permanent lower rates. With rates continuing to creep up this is not a bad idea.
In order to qualify for refinance after modification you must have made at least 24 monthly mortgage payments consistently since the modification was completed, not since you’ve applied. If there was an additional second mortgage in place that waiting time qualifies. If you’re purchasing or refinancing at different property that did not undergo the modification you only need to wait one year.
All of these qualifications still apply whether you’re refinancing or buying a new home. You can’t modify a mortgage and then sell that home in the next two months. You must make consistent payments for at least 12 or 24 months depending on your situation before your allowed to refinance or apply for a new loan. Of course you can sell the property but you cannot apply for a new loan after that particular waiting period.
Feel free to view our video below on mortgage mediation and how Advantage Legal Group has helped hundreds of Seattle area residents keep their homes and lower their mortgage payments by refinancing or mortgage mediation.
Refinancing, buying a new home or mortgage modification definitely is something to be discussed with a lender or qualified housing counselor or attorney. For more information contact Advantage Legal Group and thank you to our guests blogger this month Tina Droessler. Tina is an expert real estate professional in Palm Desert and helps dozens of homebuyers and homeowners each year find or keep the home of their dreams.
If you have no idea where to start with mortgage mediation and you’re on the brink of losing your home, there are options and steps to take immediately in order to save your home and reduce your mortgage.
Many people may not even know about the Washington State Fairness Act. This is largely due to the fact that banks and lenders won’t tell homeowners their rights and options and simply let the home fall into foreclosure.
Most banks want to push foreclosure out beyond the first of the year so over the last 6 weeks many of these notices have gone out, more than 3 times the amount we saw in summer. For those that are receiving, I notice now they will be foreclosed on until February or March. This is because lenders don’t want to be the bad guy around the holidays. The Washington state fairness foreclosure act forces banks to come to the table with the assistance of an attorney or a housing counselor in order to modify or mediate the current mortgage. Not even the state will inform people about it because they just don’t have the money to advertise this law, so many homeowners lose out on their home when that could be saved the mortgage mediation.
Banks, housing counselors or bankruptcy attorneys negotiate to find some way that the homeowners can stay in their home and this is usually through mortgage modification. At Advantage Legal Group, many people have Artie tried to do this on their own and without a qualified housing counselor or bankruptcy attorney legally cannot be done. You must have one of these two mediators with you when negotiating with the bank according to the fairness act.
When you enter into mortgage modification you can save the homeowner hundreds if not thousands of dollars each year. One of the most recent examples was an Ocwen loan where the original payment was $2087 at an interest rate of 4.65%. Advantage Legal Group was able to negotiate a new payment of just $1100 at a new interest rate of 3.375%. This helps people to become current on their mortgage again and save their home.
Even if we can’t lower the payments significantly we sometimes can negotiate a lower interest rate. One recent loan through Bank of America with an FHA loan with an interest rate of 6.275%. Advantage was able to lower that to 2%.
If you’re struggling on what to do first, simply call Advantage Legal Group. We offer free over the phone consultations to find out if you qualify for mortgage mediation. If you’ve been told that you don’t have the right paperwork or documents or simply do not get a response from your lender, it’s time to make the move and contact a mortgage mediator or housing counselor necessary and required in order to negotiate your mortgage payment.
Where Do I Begin with Mortgage Mediation?
Mediation is when the lender and the borrower sit down with a court ordered mediator, a third party, to look at options. Modification programs are often limited and hard to execute. Mediation is a good way to play it safe when you’re almost out of options to help cure any deficiencies in the process. With so many delinquent borrows currently nationwide, there are many opportunities for mistakes to be made. Borrowers can also get lost in the process and mediation personalizes for expedition and avoidance of mistakes.
Once the lender initiates foreclosure, you have the right to request mediation. The lender must send a “request for foreclosure mediation” form. You then have 25 days to complete the form and file it with the circuit court in the county or city where your foreclosure has been filed to have your request granted. You must also send the form to the attorney handling the foreclosure for your lender.
THINGS TO KNOW:
1) a non refundable fee of $50 must be paid by homeowners to the circuit court when they file a request for mediation.
2) The fee and the “request for foreclosure mediation” form must be sent to the same circuit court that your foreclosure was filed in.
3) This is your one and only chance to request foreclosure mediation. If you do not submit your fee and form within the 25 days, you will NOT be given another chance.
4)Homeowners must be living on the foreclosed property to participate in the mediation program. It must be your primary residence. The mediation program is not for owners of foreclosed, rental or commercial properties.
Should I Hire a Lawyer for a Mortgage Mediation or Foreclosure?
If your lender has failed to approve previous effort to modify your loan, often mediation is the best way to go. What is mediation? Foreclosure mediation is a meeting where a homeowner and mortgage lender negotiate potential modifications or other alternatives before an impartial Judge in an attempt to reach an agreement. And this kind of mediation requires the expertise of a lawyer.
Why hire a lawyer? The most common question asked when someone is facing foreclosure is, “What will give me the best chance to avoid this?” Although circumstances involved always vary greatly, the answer ALWAYS remains the same. And that answer is this, ” to fully and most completely use all your rights and remedies including: foreclosure defense, loan modification, mortgage mediation and bankruptcy, you MUST be represented by a foreclosure lawyer…an EXPERT foreclosure lawyer.”
Beware of scams and make sure your lawyer is an expert. Anyone who generally guarantees they’ll save your home, is either a scam artist or ignorant or both. Additionally, the person at the bank may be a brand new hire who knows nothing or someone who actually knows what they’re talking about. Either way, the next time you call, you may get the new hire. You want an expert, the same expert, and throughout the whole process.
An expert can help you understand the debt and tax consequences of a short sale, protect you from pitfalls and scams, assure you that, should foreclosure happen, you have the right to stay in your home for as long as your rights and remedies allow and enable you to plan where you’ll live next without fear of the sheriff showing up and ordering you to leave. An expert lawyer can also, in most cases, help you to be debt free when you leave should foreclosure be inevitable in your case. And of course, an expert lawyer can help you come to an agreement with your lender that avoids foreclosure all together.
Yes, these kinds of lawyers can be expensive but hiring an expert almost always benefits you not only financially but emotionally. The benefit of avoiding the loss of your home is obvious. But should you lose your home, remember, as mentioned before, there are pitfalls and scams to avoid and knowledge to be learned about debt and taxes that come with certain mediation agreements.
To contact an expert representative today, visit Advantage Legal Group.
Hi, my name is Jonathan Smith and I am an attorney servicing Western Washington. My law firm does mortgage mediation, mortgage modifications, bankruptcies and short sales.