Will anyone help me save my home?

Dear J.D.;

My name is Dee. My husband moved to Texas last year and left me here with three children. He is not working and sends no child support. I am a school teacher and my salary alone is not enough to pay the mortgage and our living expenses.

Eighteen months ago I applied for a loan modification and submitted all the paperwork required. The mortgage lender’s representative said that I will not qualify for the modification because my monthly payments were current. I struggled but I always paid my bills somehow. I called again to speak with a different representative and was told again that I would have to be delinquent to receive a modification. Against my better judgment, I stopped making the payments and then applied again for the loan modification. I submitted the requested documents (50 pages) by courier and was told that they were not received. I submitted them by FAX and was told that all pages were not received. I would call and have to wait a half hour or 45 minutes before I could speak with anyone. I would be on hold and then the line would be disconnected so I would have to call back. It became very time consuming and I did my best to follow up. I re-submitted all documents requested. After the 3rd month I received a notice that the company was sold and I would have to re-submit the application and all the documents to the new entity.

The following month I received a notice that I was in foreclosure status because I missed three payments. I immediately called and told the clerk that I did not want to stop making payments but I was told that I had to stop in order to qualify for the modification. I said I would send a payment and was told the payment would not be accepted because I was in foreclosure status. I advised the representative that they told me to stop making the payments and asked how can the company tell me to stop paying and then blame me for not paying? He did not have a plausible answer for me. I became mad and asked to speak to a supervisor but received no satisfaction. They would not accept my payment. I again submitted packages that were lost by the lender. After a month or two they would tell me the documents were “stale dated” and I would have to submit new bank statements or pay stubs. Last month I was on the phone with a representative who told me my house would be sold in a month. I hung up the phone in disbelief. I never received any foreclosure papers. I find myself crying in desperation most of the day. Will anyone help me? Should I look for a home to rent?

Please tell me what can be done to help me save my home.

Thank you, Desperate Dee


Posted: August 14, 2010

Dear Dee,

You are not alone. Millions of Americans have received the same treatment from their lenders when they have applied for a loan modification. The lenders blame the homeowners for not submitting the required documents but it is clear that they have not been motivated to modify many loans. The lender’s modification department does not communicate with the collection department. Collection efforts still proceed while a modification is pending. When a foreclosure is filed, the sheriff’s deputy or a process server will serve the Complaint at your residence. Unfortunately there are cases in which the homeowner is not home and several attempts are made without a sincere effort. If the attempts are unsuccessful, the lawyers for the mortgage company will publish the Notice of the Action in a newspaper- but in most cases the homeowners do not read those notices.

If you contact an attorney immediately there is a good chance you may save your home. The attorney will file a Notice of Appearance on your behalf and delay a sale while your modification is pending. There are currently 53,000 foreclosures pending in Palm Beach County. Because of the volume, due process is not always provided to the homeowner. Even if the sale has occurred, your attorney may file a Motion to Vacate the Foreclosure Judgment and Set Aside the Sale. There are remedies available to you but you must act right away. Many homeowners are not aware that they can stay in their homes until the foreclosure process is completed. There are attorneys whose fees may be paid in installments that are customized to your financial situation. Your attorney may very well save your home.

Sincerely, J.D.

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