Tag Archives: foreclosure avoidance

How to Stop your Denver Area Property from going to Foreclosure

If you are facing foreclosure of your Denver Area property you have several options to avoid foreclosure. The main thing is to act now. No more waiting. The sooner you begin to check out your options the more you will have. As time goes on your best options may no longer be available.


If you are already behind on your mortgage payments your lender will be calling and sending out notices. Don’t ignore them. Communication is key even if you don’t know what to do and do not have any way to pay them. If you don’t want to talk to them respond in a letter so they know what is going on with you. You don’t have to be subjected to nasty collection calls but most lenders have developed a more humane approach to find out your situation and let you know what your options are. Most lenders want to avoid foreclosure as much as you do. If you are not sure which approach is best for you or don’t fully trust your lender to have your best interest in mind, contact a professional for assistance in determining the best approach for your situation.

What to expect

Once you are 30 days late on a payment for your Denver area home you are in default but not in foreclosure yet. Any time after you are 3 months behind your lender may file the Notice of Election and Demand (NED). That is the official step that begins the foreclosure process in Colorado. You will know because you will receive multiple copies via certified mail. Filing of the NED establishes a foreclosure auction date about 110 to 120 days out. At this point you have about 4 months before the auction of your Denver area property. This date can be postponed for up to a year at the discretion of the lender, but they have to have a good reason to do so. Having a foreclosure avoidance program in process and under review is the most common reason for a lender to postpone auction. Some lenders have a policy of not postponing, so do not wait to take action.

Here is a list of 10 alternatives to Avoid Foreclosure. Some will apply to you and others will not:

  • Short Sale
  • Refinance
  • Bankruptcy
  • Forbearance
  • Reinstatement
  • Repayment Plan
  • Rent the property
  • Mortgage Modification
  • Deed in lieu of Foreclosure
  • Service member’s  Civil Relief Act

Click on the link for a free report I am offering called “Your First Steps to Avoid Foreclosure” that goes into more detail on each of these 10 options.

Your Plan of Action

The following are steps you can take if you are delinquent, in foreclosure, or on the verge of missing a mortgage payment on your Denver area property.

 Your First 3 Steps in the Right Direction

1. Gather financial information (bank statements and paystubs for the last 2 months).

2. Communicate with your lender that you will be seeking foreclosure avoidance counseling.

3. Contact an educated real estate professional like me to learn about your options to avoid foreclosure.

Feel free to contact me any time for more information or assistance.





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Uncle Sam May Pay You to Sell Your House!

Find Out How the Government’s HAFA Program Could Put Thousands of Dollars In Your Pocket to Eliminate Your Mortgage Debt!

When it comes down to it most struggling homeowners cannot qualify for or complete the HAMP mortgage modification. A more popular option offered under the government instituted Making Home Affordable Program is the HAFA short sale designed to help distressed homeowners avoid the catastrophic ramifications of Foreclosure. Under the same HAMP umbrella, the HAFA (Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives) program provides struggling homeowners with a number of benefits that help them escape an unmanageable mortgage and move forward with their lives. This government-sponsored initiative is overseen by the U.S. Treasury Department and administered by Fannie Mae.

Some of the most important benefits to the homeowner are guaranteed forgiveness of debt with no further threat of collection on the deficiency balance left after the property is sold, and $3,000 to the homeowner at the closing table for relocation assistance.

Under HAFA the government has also created uniform guidelines and timeframes for lenders, making the short sale process easier and more efficient. This gives the Short Sale Specialist Realtor a much better chance of finding a buyer willing to stick with the short sale approval process and close successfully.

To learn more about the benefits of this program and see if you can qualify order my free report called “Struggling to Make Your Mortgage? Uncle Sam May Pay You to Sell Your House!”



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Posted by on January 25, 2013 in Foreclosure, HAFA, Short Sales


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GSE’s now agree to implement HAFA

Originally when the HAFA program was initiated by the Obama administration via the U.S. Treasury Department, the  GSE’s (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) refused to participate. This seemed a little strange to most of us involved in the Short Sale industry since the GSE’s are considered by most to be quasi government organizations and pretty much controlled by the government. Not to mention they control over 50 % of all mortgage activity. They have now agreed to implement HAFA with some revisions and compromises by the Treasury Department to simplify the process, but keeping the following important elements:

  1. Release of Borrower Liability – A borrower who is approved for a Short Sale under the HAFA program will not owe the amount of the loan(s) which is not recovered by the sale of the home. The borrower, therefore, will not be saddled with a Deficiencey judgement which could be collected by the investor after closing. This is a Huge benefit to Distressed Homeowners since there is an automatic Deficiency and potential Deficiency Judgement on any property which goes to Foreclosure Auction for less than the full amount owed on the property. In Colorado the investor has up to 6 years after Foreclosure Auction to pursue collection. One Very good reason to attempt a Short Sale rather than just let the property go to Foreclosure Auction.
  2. No dual tracking – The Servicer on the mortgage is not allowed to begin a Short Sale process and then Foreclose on the property in the middle of the process.
  3. One point of contact – The Servicing company on the mortgage must assign a single point of contact for the file so there is one person who is familiar with the file and can answer questions, give updates, and potentially assist in getting things moving forward when a log jam or problem occurs.
  4. Caps on subordinate lien payoffs – Having a cap on the amount a subordinate lien holder can receive from the transaction helps prevent situations where the Short Sale process cannot move forward to approval because of an unreasonable 2nd or 3rd lien holder insisting on getting more from the transaction than the first position lien holder is willing to allow. In many cases the junior lien holders would get zero if the property went to Foreclosure auction so it is a better situation for them to agree to the Short Sale plus the Treasury Department adds an incentive for them to play ball.
  5. Simplified documentation – The GSE’s insisted on a more simplified process with less documentation required. For example some documents required a signature from the borrower to acknowledge that they understand the terms of the process before the process could continue to the next step. This was an unnecessary step which could be incorporated later in the process and was easily holding things up for an additional 2 or 3 weeks.

I will go into more detail about this in a future post on this subject. Post 2 of 5 on this subject.


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Assessed value of Colorado property declines

According to the Denver Post
assessed value of Colorado Properties declined in 2010 for the first time since real estate troubles in the 1980’s, and residential properties are expected to plummet another 10.4% in 2011. In the 80’s the oil bust and the savings-and-loan collapse were blamed for the decline in real estate values. As we enter the second decade in the 21st century, the culprits are “The sustained high level of foreclosures, economic downturn and tight mortgage financing market have put downward pressure on home prices throughout Colorado” the Report said. As we work our way through the difficulties associated with high unemployment, lethargic economy, and declines in real estate values, more and more families are finding themselves in trouble on their mortgages. Many distressed homeowners find that they are not able to make the mortgage payment which they once qualified for, either because of job loss, curtailment of income, high debt, or medical issues. To boot, their property is no longer worth as much as they owe, making it difficult to even sell just to get out from under it. In some of these situations, depending on their particular scenario, the homeowner may be able to qualify for a loan modification we all continue to hear so much about. Unfortunately, according to most of the professionals who are attempting to help people obtain a modification or workout program so they can stay in their home, it is a very small percentage of borrowers who are getting the permanent solution they are looking for approved by their lenders. For the rest, a Short Sale is a much better alternative to at least avoid Foreclosure and the aftermath of life after Foreclosure. That is where we come in. As a Certified Distressed Property Expert, my first consultation with a Distressed Homeowner is designed to help them determine if their situation may qualify them for a loan modification or one of the other alternatives to stay in their home. If we agree they should try to keep their home, I have experienced professionals who will give them the best possibility of keeping their home, by assisting the homeowner in compiling all of the critical information and documentation necessary, as well as negotiating on their behalf with the lender(s). In the event that they are not able to keep the property, my team and I have a proven system and track record to successfully sell the property for what it is worth in today’s real estate market, and negotiate the short pay with their lender. A Short Pay involves the mortgage lender(s) on the property agreeing to accept less than the full principal balance of the loan, the net proceeds from the Short sale, and release the lien on the property so it can be sold to avoid foreclosure.

Read more: Assessed value of Colorado property declines – The Denver Post
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Posted by on December 26, 2010 in Short Sales


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Short Sales may become an even better alternative on April 5th

There has been a great deal of variety and unknowns in the Short Sale process as each Servicer, Investor, Mortgage Insurance company, etc. involved in the process has a different way of processing, reviewing, and approving the transaction. The timeframes and results vary from one transaction to the next,  many times even with the same lender or Servicing company.

On April 5, 2010 a new program takes effect under the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives program (HAFA). The intent is to provide incentives to the parties involved in the process to more effectively and efficiently implement options to avoid Foreclosure,  such as Short Sales. One of the intended effects is to bring uniformity to the process so there are less unknowns, hence a more attractive option to be considered by Homeowners in Distress, Buyers, and Realtors. If they meet their objectives, the process which has taken weeks or months in the past will be accomplished within 10 days.

So what are the rules? The rules are set by the new Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives (HAFA) Program, which seeks to find alternatives when a borrower cannot qualify for a modification under HAMP rules, because they don’t have enough income. Both short sales and deed-in-lieu of foreclosure will be options. In a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure the homeowner turns the keys over to the bank without the need for a foreclosure and the bank agrees to accept them without seeking any funds for a short fall when the home finally sells.

If a borrower is not eligible for a HAMP modification, then the bank will use the information gathered during the HAMP process so they don’t need to do additional eligibility analysis. The borrower will get a pre-approved set of terms for the short sale before the property is listed, which means the potential buyers won’t have to wait weeks or months for an answer from the bank. The bank is also required to fully release the borrower from any future liability for the debt.

For short sale offers where there isn’t a pre-approved set of terms, banks must respond to an offer in 10 days. However, I have not been able to find anyone who is sure when that 10-day count begins. Is it when the contract is offered or when all paperwork required by the bank has been submitted? We suspect banks will find ways to stall their answers. “It’s a cumbersome process. It will take a couple of months at least, to see what the lenders will actually do with this program.
To be eligible for help under HAFA rules:

  • The property must be the borrower’s principal residence;
  • The mortgage loan must be a first lien mortgage originated on or before January 1, 2009;
  • The mortgage is delinquent or default is reasonably foreseeable;
  • The current unpaid principal balance is equal to or less than $729,7501; and
  • The borrower’s total monthly mortgage payment exceeds 31 percent of the borrower’s gross income.


The HAFA program simplifies and streamlines the use of

short sales and DIL options by incorporating the following unique features:

 Complements HAMP by providing viable alternatives for borrowers who are HAMPeligible.

 Utilizes borrower financial and hardship information collected in conjunction with

HAMP, eliminating the need for additional eligibility analysis.

 Allows the borrower to receive pre-approved short sale terms prior to the property listing.

 Prohibits the servicer from requiring, as a condition of approving the short sale, a

reduction in the real estate commission agreed upon in the listing agreement.

 Requires that borrowers be fully released from future liability for the debt.

 Uses standard processes, documents and timeframes.

 Provides financial incentives to borrowers, servicers and investors.

If you are in the middle of the HAMP process or have been told you don’t qualify, be sure to ask about HAFA alternatives for help in getting out of your loan obligations.

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Posted by on April 4, 2010 in Short Sales


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5 Keys plus to a smoother Short Sale

5 Keys to better Short Selling:

  • The right Short Sale Agent: Many agents do not do short sales, some are just getting into doing them, and some have become “experts” by taking a class.  BE CAREFUL!  There are only a few players in town who have the 3 critical criteria:  1. Long term Experience doing Short Sales, 2. Success closing Short Sales, 3. Processes to manage the Short Sale.  Without these 3 criteria, run the other way.
  • Pricing Plan: Your agent should price the home accordingly.  A short sale is not a give away but it is a sale at today’s market value, or slightly below….remember supply is very high and demand is very low.  Too many times I see homes priced well above the market value while the REALTOR and the owners hope for an offer.  We do things differently:  We have a plan to price and move the price accordingly to get the results that we demand.
  • CLEAN and CURB APPEAL: Forget the idea that you don’t need to keep things nice because someone is getting a really good deal.  Newsflash:  There are really good deals everywhere.  Your Short Sale must stand out!  Get rid of junk.  Correct over stuffed rooms and over stuffed closets.  Clean like you have never cleaned before.  Clean the carpets, bathroom grout, shine up everything, clean the windows.  Go outside, trim the hedges, clean up the yard, add some flowers.  This is a competition and you must win.
  • Access: There should be no problems showing the home at any given day or time.  If you restrict showings, you could be turning away your buyer.  I have several homes that have tenants in the property – This is bad as the tenants almost always deny showings on a regular basis.  If you have tenants, discuss with them some options to get them to move.
  • Compliance: The banks will require specific documents from you the Seller and often times will require updated documents while we are in negotiations with the bank.  Your timely compliance is crucial.  Waiting a day or two in between request and you are pushing the closing out a couple more days.  Be aggressive with request and get your business handled.
  • BONUS ITEM:  Front Load your Inspections: If you have the cash on hand and even if it is extremely tight, you should pay to have a complete home inspection completed before the home goes on the market.  About $200 bucks total.  This would remove any “contingencies” for the buyer as they know exactly what they are getting before going into a contract.  Too often a buyer finds out 90 days into the contract that the house needs new siding and the buyer can’t afford to replace it when they close and the seller can’t afford to replace it either.  Obviously, knowing what is potentially wrong with the house ahead of time would help to avoid these situations and avoid wasting your time.
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Posted by on March 28, 2010 in Short Sales


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