Contact Your Lender As Soon As You Have A Problem
Many people avoid calling their lenders when they have money troubles. Most of us are embarrassed to discuss our money problems with others or believe that if lenders know we are in trouble, they will rush to collection or foreclosure.
Lenders want to help borrowers keep their homes. Foreclosure is expensive for lenders, mortgage insurers and investors. HUD/FHA, as well as private mortgage insurance companies and investors like Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, require lenders to work aggressively with borrowers who are facing money problems.
Lenders have workout options to help you keep your home. However, these options work best when your loan is only one or two payments behind. The farther behind you are on your payments, the fewer options are available.
Do not assume that your problems will quickly correct themselves. Don't lose valuable time by being overly optimistic. Contact your mortgage lender to discuss your circumstances as soon as you realize that you are unable to make your payments. While there is no guarantee that any particular relief will be given, most lenders are willing to explore every possible option.Finding Your Lender
Expect to have more than one phone conversation with your lender. Typically, your lender will mail you a "loan workout" package. This package contains information, forms and instructions. If you want to be considered for assistance, you must complete the forms and return them to your lender quickly. The completed package will be reviewed before the lender talks about a solution with you.CALL TODAY! The sooner you call; the sooner help is available. Do Not Ignore Mail From Your Lender
If you do not contact your lender, your lender will try to contact you by mail and phone soon after you stop making payments. It is very important that you respond to the mail and the phone calls offering help. If your lender does not hear from you they will be required to start legal action leading to foreclosure. This will substantially increase the cost of bringing your loan current.Information For Families With FHA Loans
The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) provides a wide range of relief options for borrowers. There are many alternatives and ways to get help. These may include mortgage modifications, special forebearances, and other actions you can take to avoid foreclosure.
HUD's National Servicing Center works closely with customers who have FHA insured loans. Do you feel your lender is not responding to your questions? Do you need assistance contacting your lender? The NSC is ready to help!Talk To A Housing Counseling Agency
If you don't feel comfortable talking with your lender, you should immediately contact a HUD-approved housing counseling agency and arrange an appointment with a counselor. A counselor will help you assess your financial situation, determine what options are available to you, and help you negotiate with your lender. A counselor will be familiar with the various workout arrangements that lenders will consider and will know what course of action makes the most sense for you and your family, based on your circumstances. In addition, the counselor can call the lender with you or on your behalf to discuss a workout plan. By meeting with a counselor before your mortgage payments are too far behind, you can protect yourself from future credit problems.
A good counselor will help you establish a monthly budget plan to ensure that you can meet all of your monthly expenses, including your mortgage payment. Your personal financial plan will clearly show how much money you have available to make the mortgage payment. This analysis will help you and your lender determine whether a reduced or delayed payment schedule could help you. Also, a counselor will have information on services, resources, and programs available in your local area that may provide you with additional financial, legal, medical or other assistance that you may need.
To find out more about HUD-approved housing counseling agencies and their services, call (800) 569-4287 on weekdays between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. ET (6:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. PT). You can also get an automated referral to the three housing counseling agencies located closest to you by calling (800) 569-4287, or search HUD's database of approved agencies by state.
Many of these local housing counseling agencies are affiliates of national and regional housing counseling intermediaries. The Websites for the HUD-approved National and Regional Housing Counseling Intermediaries describe the full range of assistance offered, as well as maps showing location of their affiliates.