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How to save your house from foreclosure

You've slipped behind on your mortgage payments and you have serious concerns about losing your home to foreclosure. As stressed out as you may be, don't give in and assume that you have no options.

There are several ways to save your house from foreclosure, including the following:

  • Mortgage modification: Don't forget that your lender would rather work something out with you than foreclose on your home. They're in the business of servicing loans, not buying and selling real estate. If you're willing to negotiate and compromise, you may be able to modify your mortgage to secure terms and conditions that better suit your finances.
  • Short sale: A short sale is when your lender agrees for you to sell your home for less than what you owe, without any requirement for you to make up the difference. While a short sale allows you to avoid foreclosure, you're unable to stay in your house.
  • Bankruptcy: Even if the foreclosure process is in full force, filing for foreclosure will stop it for the time being. Once you file with the court, federal law prohibits your lender from proceeding with collection activities. The thing you need to remember is that the automatic stay only does so much for you. There will still come a time when you need to work things out with your lender. Bankruptcy doesn't stop foreclosure for good, but it can buy you enough time to figure things out.

Which strategy is best?

Since no two people are facing the same circumstances, there's no right or wrong answer to this question. For example, a mortgage modification may be the perfect solution if you simply need some time to get your finances back on track. Conversely, a short sale makes sense if you want to avoid foreclosure, but you don't care if you're able to stay in your home. And bankruptcy may be the right choice if you need to address other forms of debt, along with your mortgage.

A foreclosure notice doesn't mean you're losing your home. As long as you learn more about the many ways to stop foreclosure, you can implement a plan that works for you, your finances and your future.

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