Florida Foreclosure Alternatives Lawyer

Foreclosures are striking everyone in South Florida — both rich and poor. Often times, however, there are alternatives that people facing foreclosure can explore in an effort to avoid foreclosure.

Before assessing your rights and the best course of action to take to possibly avoid a home foreclosure, you will need to determine whether your objective is to retain your home or to dispose of your home. Therefore, it becomes important to consult with our Miami foreclosure alternative lawyers to assess your situation and create a plan that would best suit your goals.

Below is an overview of the alternatives available to avoid foreclosure depending on whether you opt to keep your home or dispose of your home.

I. Options to Avoid Foreclosure and Keep Your Home

1. Payment or repayment plan – The quickest method of avoiding foreclosure is to come up with the necessary money to bring the delinquent loan current. In some instances, banks are willing to provide the delinquent borrower with a repayment plan in an effort to bring the mortgage current. This will typically involve an agreed upon time frame in which to make the regular payments, plus a little extra, to repay the delinquent amount in full over time.

2. Refinance – In the event that you have equity in your home today, you may be in a position to refinance your mortgage. Refinancing your mortgage may provide you with a lower interest rate and a lower monthly payment. If you do not qualify for a government-sponsored loan modification, you may be eligible for a government-sponsored re-financing plan (HARP – Home Affordable Refinance Program).

3. Forbearance – Some banks may offer you a forbearance plan. This option typically provides borrowers with a temporary reduction or a suspension of monthly payments for a specified length of time. It also includes an agreement that the amount that was forgiven will be paid back at a later date.

4. Loan modification – A loan modification is a permanent change in one or more of the terms of the mortgage. It also allows the mortgage to be reinstated, and results in a payment that the borrower can afford. This can include anything from reducing the interest to adding years to the mortgage (from, for example, a 30-year mortgage to a 40-year mortgage), reducing the principal amount owed, or any combination of the above. Many financial institutions have financial incentives from the government to modify loans. Additionally, the current loan modification program is not designed to save every home, but only geared toward saving the homes of individuals who can still afford to be in that home.

II. Alternative Options to Dispose of Your Home

1. Sell the home – If there is sufficient equity in your home, you may be able to sell your home in today’s market for more than the amount you currently owe on your mortgage. If you can do this, you will actually reap a profit.

2. Short sale – If your home is “underwater,” i.e. you owe more than the home is worth, then you will have to pursue a short sale if you are interested in selling the home. During a short sale, the bank allows you to sell the home for a contract price that is less than the amount you owe on the mortgage. However, the bank may require you to pay back the difference between the amount it receives from the short sale and the amount you owe on the mortgage.

3. Deed in lieu of foreclosure – You may be able to voluntarily give your property back to the bank in exchange for the bank canceling your mortgage. However, as with a short sale, the bank may reserve the right to pursue any deficiency against the borrower directly even after the deal is done.

Discuss Your Options to Avoid Home Foreclosure

To explore alternatives to avoid foreclosure with an experienced Miami foreclosure options attorney, contact us.

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