How to avoid Foreclosure in Georgia
Ahhh, the American Dream. Home Ownership – you worked so hard for so long- now you own a piece of Americana…your own home. What can be better! Family get togethers, cookouts on the deck, kicking back and relaxing. The good life!
But one day – maybe no fault of your own, something happens. Maybe a family member got sick – and the Obamacare insurance plan you chose due to the “lower” monthly payments has a massive deductible you can’t possibly pay. Maybe you got sick and missed days at work. Maybe a vacation was a bit too heavy on the wallet, your spouse lost their job, (or you did) , you had to have that new car, college tuition costs…you get the picture.
Then it happens. You can’t pay the month’s mortgage payment. If you had a few more weeks – you know you can pay it – but it’s due now. You missed the due date. Two weeks after your next bi-weekly paycheck – another mortgage payment is due. There is no way you can meet both mortgage payments in a two week window. You are falling behind – fast.
What most homeowners do- which is wrong, is bury their head in the sand. Not literally – just a figure of speech – which is quite accurate here. Many “forget” about the lost payment. Maybe it will correct itself. If you don’t say something to the bank- maybe they won’t catch it. In fact- don’t tell your spouse- that might make it worse…
Many homeowners get caught in the trap that living paycheck to paycheck is somehow alright. You’re making every dollar count – until something happens. Then- your world comes crashing down. What to do? That’s why this article exists… What to do…and fast!
Like I mentioned, most homeowners don’t do much – or anything at all. If they did – the number of foreclosure homes going to the auction every month would be drastically reduced. Instead – we had seen number totaling in excess of 5,000, 6,000, 7,000 homes per month – in the Atlanta area alone, during the recession of 2008-2010. Even today – there are over 1,000 homes per month. Each one is a family in trouble – that didn’t do the right thing- or nothing at all.
What’s the right thing? It’s easier to answer what is the wrong thing. The wrong thing is pretending it will go away- like a bad dream. The wrong thing is throwing out all the investor postcards received in the mailbox. The wrong thing is not contacting the bank to make arrangements for back payments. The wrong thing is to not speak with a real estate agent about listing the home now – and at a low price. The wrong thing is to declare bankruptcy.
What can you infer from the above paragraph? The answer jumps out at you if you think about it. It screams: Just do something – and fast! Anything is better than sitting around waiting for the foreclosure date to happen. Once the process begins, you have four weeks of the home being advertised, plus a few days to make it to the first tuesday of the following month. That’s it.
If you waited to do something, or nothing up to now- you made things worse on yourself. Not only are you about to lose any equity in your home that you might have had, you will also lose your credit, most likely, your spouse’s credit, and your family must be displaced. If you do nothing still, you will be evicted, and your belongings will be on the curb for all your neighbors to see – who know your situation- and will pick through your items – free of charge. Yes- this is the real world, and how things really happen, in Georgia. I’ve been involved with too many evictions and foreclosures – and have seen it all. Usually in disbelief – especially when most could have been avoided. Watching the neighborhood pick through what was once yours – assuming you weren’t home during the eviction itself, is quite disturbing on many levels…and legal, once signed off by the county Sheriff’s department.
What’s wrong with calling investor postcards or letters? Your mailbox is stuffed with tons of letters from different investors knowing you are in trouble – and offer plans to help. You know the ones…sell my house fast, we buy houses, sell your house for cash, we buy houses for cash, etc. Maybe it’s not the best solution – but your situation doesn’t call for a “best solution” – just a fast, ironclad solution. One where your credit is preserved for another day, allows you time to move – without a bankruptcy or foreclosure on your record, and most likely, some cash in your pocket. Pick a reputable company – or a trustworthy individual.
Sure sounds better than the opposite solution: do nothing because these “parasites” will steal you blind – or other self defeatist attitude – that only brings you down faster. Sure they are doing what they do to make money. Don’t you go to work to make money too? At least the free market came up with a solution to homeowners losing everything to the bank. So what if the investor makes money- you’ll soon lose everything if you do nothing! Maybe there’s a solution for you to profit too. But you have to call them first… Besides, either the investor earns a profit from this, or the bank does. One helps you. The other doesn’t care. You choice.
Embarrassed to contact the bank and admit you need help? How about being embarrassed when the Sheriff comes knocking on your door with your eviction? When it happens, it’s game over. Right there. I’ve witnessed many at home when they show up.
Afraid of contacting a real estate agent? Isn’t that how you bought your house in the first place? They are always looking for listings. Try the agents that constantly mail you postcards – they know your market well – and can price your home for a quick sale. Most banks will wait a few days for a sale- when a lawyer prepares a document and HUD form from an upcoming sale. Foreclosures cost the bank $1000’s – of course they would rather get their money back- if a closing is happening now – or next week.
You see, in Georgia – most foreclosures are done after the an owner receives a Demand letter acknowledging the debt owed according to the terms of the original Promissory Note, and a legal document known as a FDCPA (Fair Debt Collection Practices Act). Four weeks of advertising your home in the county legal organ newspaper, and off to the auction. Once the Auction is done – a Deed Under Power is issued to the highest bidder (even if the bank gets the home back) – and it wipes out all previous liens except: IRS, State of Georgia income tax, County property taxes, F.I.F.A. liens ( issued on behalf of a service provider that went to court and a judge allowed the lien on the home – from something the homeowner didn’t pay for), and a few others like POA liens, etc.
If you did nothing, and became foreclosed upon, you’re now technically a homeless family – credit ruined, no real cash to your name, and may even lose your belongings – if you don’t move out fast. The sad part -all could have been avoided.
Sometimes, the best solution to a problem is right under your nose. How about a quickly typing into Google what you need? Nobody will know – not even the neighbors – unless you tell them! Foreclosures should be a last resort only- there are simply too many avenues to explore when losing your home. There really isn’t any excuse – is there?
If you are reading this and have questions, or if you need a service like I described above – feel free to contact me. I can provide you with straight & honest information – that you can use right now. Head over to www.suburbanhomebuyers.net for more information.
Thanks for reading – I hope it helps!