Unaffordable mortgage payments coming off the interest only loan

Question: The term on my interest only loan will end soon and my home is under water. At the end, I will end up owing $100,000 more than what my home appraises to with 20 years left to pay off. Given the above, I do not qualify for refinancing nor any government programs. Also, my new mortgage payments will be more than double of what I have been paying so far, and I will not be able to afford them when they start to kick in. What can I do?

Response: The first step for you is to find out if your lender participates in the government’s Making Home Affordable program (most major banks do). If you have sufficient income and have not yet defaulted on your mortgage, you may be able to refinance through Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP). Another option is loan modification but beware that even though it is not required by law, most banks require that you default on your payments before you are considered for loan modification. Start off with calling your bank and inquiring as to what programs does the bank participate in. If they tell you to default on your mortgage payment, then a whole new can of worms opens up (i.e. ruined credit; potential foreclosure if the modification is not resolved) and I would recommend looking into other options first. The bottom line is–the bank does not want your home, and even more so if your mortgage is no longer secured by equity in your home.

In the legal blog, Attorney Svetlana Kaplun addresses typical questions our firm has received from our clients, or come across from homeowners related to foreclosure, foreclosure defense, loan modification and bankruptcy topics. The information contained in the legal blog of Attorney Svetlana Kaplun is for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as a legal advice on any subject matter. Please read our full disclaimer or contact the Law Office of Svetlana Kaplun, P.C. by telephone at 718-444-1115 for more information. Copyright © 2012 Law Office of Svetlana Kaplun, P.C.

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