In 2009, I originally wrote and submitted this article. Some things have changed . I am now on disability and receive a monthly payment benefit. So, my ability to meet my mortgage payment has improved, and I did avoid foreclosure. Other changes involve an improving economy, reduced unemployment figures according to CNN Money sources and Bloomberg.com claims that the decline in housing prices may be at or near an end.
According to "CBS Money Watch", the foreclosure rate that is typically tracked -- which is when the bank has seized a home is down. It's something referred to as shadow inventory that is keeping overall foreclosures up. Shadow inventory refers to houses that are either in foreclosure and have not yet been sold or homes that owners are delaying putting on the market until prices improve. No wonder that we are confused despite living in a hi tech 2013 environment.
U.S. home loans failed at a record pace in July of 2009. This news is not a surprise, yet was shocking to hear. It was the third time in the prior five months that a new record was set. Even though unemployment in the country was at 9.4%, the numbers of people still drawing benefits had decreased.1 As you can see, numbers did not tell the whole story. Comparatively, May of 2013 shows an unemployment rate of 7.6%. There was a 7% increase in foreclosure filings from June to July 2009 and an increase of 32% from the time last year. RealtyTrac stated that 1 out of 355 homes that had a loan got a foreclosure filing.2 Like I said, foreclosure rates were rising.
More than 360,000 households with loans drew a foreclosure filing in July 2009, a record dating back to January 2005, when RealtyTrac started tracking monthly activity. Notices of default, auction or repossession had reached nearly 2.3 million in the first seven months of 2009-- with more than half a million bank repossessions, according to RealtyTrac.3 For those of you that felt the economic indicators were encouraging, this might have caused you to think otherwise.
Many states were suffering, with Nevada, California, Arizona and Florida making up 57% of the total foreclosure activity in July. However Illinois, Georgia, Texas, New Jersey and Ohio were the other states that had the highest rates of foreclosures. I live in Ohio and was facing foreclosure too. I am not writing this to tell you what my trials and tribulations are about as I am not any different than the millions of people that are in the same boat. As of February 2013,the top 10 states with the highest foreclosure rates in the country, are Florida, Nevada, Illinois, Ohio, Washington, Arizona, Georgia, Utah, Maryland and Michigan.4
Interesting to note that California, Texas and New Jersey have disappeared from the Top Ten.
I can tell you what it feels like, though. It is at first scary, depressing, desolate and harrowing. Then you feel like just giving up. Then you get angry and determined to find a solution. I know I tried to get a solution with my lender. It did not work. I didn’t qualify for the “assistance” they tried and offer to me. One method would have actually increased the amount that I currently pay, one method required me knowing a specific return date to work(I am unemployed) and one method actually required you to be 4 months late on your mortgage before they would even talk with you. Insanity seemed the only thing they could assist me with.
Maybe my situation was unique. We had a drastically reduced income due to my losing my job. Thus, our debt to income ratios was above the norm, so we did qualify for help from the lender. Come on, I’m not unique. Everyone in foreclosure, default or actual auction sale has those same conditions. I was always told; call you lender right away so that they can work with you. For me, their working with me didn’t work. Not one bit.
Like I said, it’s scary, depressing, desolate and harrowing. You feel like just giving up. Then you get angry. Then you get active. You go from hopelessness to hopeful, from not knowing to personal advocate, from desolate to pleased and from harrowed to relaxed. There is still time to stay in the home and methods that you have to fight to keep your home.
So, if you find the foreclosure threat to be at your doorstep, remember that it’s still your doorstep. Get active and get acclimated to avenues of assistance available to you. It is not what they can do to you; it’s what you can do for yourself. Just have hope and a willingness to do what it takes.
2) Yahoo Finance Pages August 13, 2009 > author Lynn Alder
3) Yahoo Finance Pages August 13, 2009 > author Lynn Alder
4) Realtor-Mag March 15, 2013 > source Realty Trac