Have you received a notice from your lender asking you to contact them?

    If you are unable to make your mortgage payment :

    1. Don't ignore the problem. The further behind you become  the harder it will be to

     reinstate your loan and the more likely that you will lose your house.

    2. Contact your lender as soon as you realize that you have a problem. Lenders do not

     want your house. They have options to help borrowers through diffucult financial times.

    3. Open and respond to all mail from your lender. The first notices you receive will offer

     good information about foreclosure prevention options that can help you weather financial

      problems. Later mail may include important notice of pending legal action. Your failure to

     open the mail will not be an excuse in foreclosure court.

    4. Know your mortgage rights. Find your loan documents and read them so you know

     what your lender may do if you can't make your payments. Learn about the foreclosure laws

     and timeframes in your state(as every state is different) by contacting the State Government

     Housing Office..

    5. Understand foreclosure prevention options. Valuable information about forclosure pre-

    vention(also called loss mitigation)options can be found on the internet at :

    6. Contact a HUD-approved housing counselor.The U.S. Department of Housing and

    Urban Development (HUD) funds free or very low cost housing counseling nationwide.Hous-

    ing counselors can help you understand the law and your options, organize your finances and

    represent you in negotiations with your lender if you need this assistance. Call (800) 569-

    4287 or TTY (800) 877-8339.

    7. Priortize your spending.After healthcare, keeping your house should be your first priori-

     ty. Review your finances and see where you can cut spending in order to make your mort-

     gage payment. Look for optional expenses - cable TV, memberships, entertainment - that

     you can eliminate. Delay payments on credit cards and other "unsecured" debt until you have

     paid your mortgage.

    8. Use your assets.Do you have assets -- a second car, jewelry, a whole life insurance po-

    licy -- that you can sell for cash to help reinstate your loan? Can anyone in your household get

    an extra job to bring in addtional income?  Even if thes efforts don't significantly increase your

    available cash or your income ,they demonstrate to your lender that you are willing to make

    sacrifices to keep your home.

    9. Avoid foreclosure prevention companies. You don't need to pay fees for foreclosure

    prevention help - use that money to pay the mortgage instead. Many for-profit companies will

    contact you promising to negotiate with your lender. While these may be legitimate businesses,

    they will charge you  a hefty fee ( often tow or three months's mortgage payment) for informa-

    tion and services your lender or a HUD approved housing counselor will provide free.

    10. Don't lose your house to foreclosure recovery scams! If any firm claims they can

    stop your foreclosure immediately if you sign a document appointing them to act on your be-

    half, you may well be signing over the title to your property and becoming a renter in your

    own home! Never sign a legal document without reading and understanding all the terms and

    getting professional advice from an attorney, a trusted real estate professional, or a HUD

    approved housing counselor.

    Source : Homes & YOU          WWW.HOMESANDYOUMAGAZINE.COM