Take the First Step to Regain Control of Your Life
Many Americans face a difficult decision. They have fallen behind on their mortgage payments, owe more on their homes than they are worth, and may be ineligible to refinance or modify their mortgage. Foreclosure appears inevitable, but it doesn’t have to be. The opportunity for a fresh start exists.
PennyMac is not a bank. We are a mortgage lender and loan servicer specializing in foreclosure alternatives. Our mission is to help homeowners find the best solution given their current financial situation. Sometimes that includes staying in their home and other times it means they’ll need to identify the next best option.
Don’t Wait - Explore all your options
When borrowers are unable to make their required loan payments, foreclosure is the final action a mortgage company will pursue to recover its losses on the loan due to lack of payments or other defaults on the loan. Since foreclosure can seriously damage your credit, you should explore all other options. The first step is to contact your lender. Programs are available that may enable you to modify your loan to make your payments more affordable so you can stay in your home. Everyone's situation is different, however. Sometimes the best alternative for your financial future is to start fresh in a more affordable home.
If you simply cannot afford reasonable mortgage payments, two alternatives are a Short Sale and a Deed-in-Lieu. Either of these options may allow you to reestablish your credit sooner than if your property were to go through foreclosure. Here is a brief explanation of each:
Short Sale: the mortgage company allows you to sell the property for fair market value and use the proceeds to pay off the mortgage, even if the home sells for less than what you owe, and you won't have to repay any remaining balance.
Deed in Lieu: You can voluntarily transfer ownership of your home to the mortgage company, and you won't have to pay anything more towards your loan.
If you are a PennyMac customer who needs assistance, please call us at (888) 870-6328 today. Our Resolution Specialists can review each option in detail with you, so you can determine your best option. Because the short sale and deed in lieu options require you to move from your home, PennyMac may be able to offer you relocation assistance to help cover the costs associated with finding and moving to a new home. But don’t wait - the amount of money available to you decreases with time as the costs associated with the foreclosure increase. Making the phone call will allow you to pursue the option that best fits your financial situation.
Many people have the misconception that the lender wants to take back your home through foreclosure. Untrue – the lender is most interested in ensuring that mortgage payments are made each month. Lenders only begin foreclosure when every other option has failed. Foreclosure is the legal means your lender can use to repossess your home. You should avoid foreclosure, if at all possible. Many states require the lender to go to court to foreclose. In some states, the lender is required to file a lawsuit against the borrower. The lender must give public notice of foreclosure proceedings. Notice often occurs in a local newspaper.
What to Do Right Now if You are Delinquent
- Do not ignore letters and calls from PennyMac. If you’re having problems making your payments, call or write immediately. Explain your situation. Be prepared to provide financial information, such as your monthly income and expenses. Without this information, we may not be able to help.
- Let us know as early as you can that you’re having difficulty making payments. Our ability to help often declines with each missed payment.
- Stay in your house for now. Abandoning your property could make it harder for you to qualify for programs meant to help you.
- Beware of scams. Scam artists try to exploit struggling homeowners. Beware of anyone who wants to charge you a fee to help modify your loan or provide counseling. Look out for people who pressure you to sign papers quickly or tell you they can save your home if you transfer the deed over to them.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funds housing counseling agencies throughout the country. These organizations can give you advice on renting, defaults, foreclosures, credit issues and more. To contact the agency nearest you, call (800) 569-4287 or visit www.hud.gov.