No one ever intends to get behind on their bills. But life happens, and it’s easier than you might realize to find yourself in over your head. If you’re struggling to pay your mortgage right now, you’re not alone! According to federal reserve data, 3.68 percent of mortgages (or one in every 27) are in default.

The threat of foreclosure is, unfortunately, an immediately looming nightmare for many homeowners. It’s easy to feel helpless in the face of the possible loss of the home you’ve worked so hard for, but you have options, including selling your house for cash! Below are five possible paths you can take to stop foreclosure.

1. Repayment Plan

The absolute first thing you want to do if you can’t pay your mortgage is reach out to your lender. The sooner you loop them into the process, the better your chances to stop foreclosure. Communicating with them about the extenuating circumstances of your financial situation will ensure they have all the information they need to work with you on keeping your home.

If you’re already a few months behind on payments, a repayment plan may help you catch up and prevent the initiation of foreclosure proceedings. Obviously, this option will require that you pay more each month than your normal mortgage payment so that you can catch up. If you’re not able to come up with the extra cash, there are other avenues you can explore.

2. Short Sale

If you know that catching up with overdue payments or continuing to make your monthly payments isn’t in the cards, a short sale may be your best bet. In this scenario, you would be selling your home for less than what you owe the lender. If your home has not appreciated in value since you purchased it, it’s likely that you won’t make enough on the sale to pay your mortgage in full.

Depending on the laws where you live, your lender might be able to come after you for the remainder of what you owe after a short sale, so make sure to do your research before going in this direction. You could also ask the lender to agree in writing before the sale to waive any remaining balance so that you’re not on the hook for it.

3. Update Terms

If you are determined to keep your home but simply can’t make your current monthly payment, you may want to discuss restructuring the terms of your loan with the lender. This is an especially good option if your financial situation is short-term or you know there is relief on the horizon (e.g., you’re starting a new job soon, you’re due an inheritance, or you’re selling a second home or other major asset like property, a car, or a boat).

Be aware that redefining your loan terms will almost always come with an extension of your payment timeline. If you were set to pay off your mortgage in 15 years at your original rate, you could be looking at tacking five to 10 years onto that if you adjust your payments down significantly. You will also end up paying more over the life of the loan, due to compounding interest.

4. Deed-in-Lieu

If you simply can’t keep your home anymore, but you’re not able to go through the sale process, you can undertake a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure. This essentially means that you sign the deed to your home over to your lender and walk away.

Much like a short sale, you need to protect yourself from the lender so they can’t come back to you asking for additional cash after they have possession of your home. Get it in writing! Your lender may also have a program that helps with relocation costs for owners who sign over their deeds, so be sure to ask.

5. Sell for Cash

All the options above have pros and cons. But if none of them work for your situation and you want to stop foreclosure, your best bet may be to sell your home to a cash homebuyer. You can satisfy the terms of your loan and walk away without the stain of foreclosure on your credit score. There are no closing costs, listing fees or commissions to consider, and the process is much faster than a traditional sale with a realtor.

We know it can be an overwhelming and upsetting situation when you can’t afford your mortgage. The easiest option for you may be to move on from an ugly situation by selling your home for cash. Meridian Trust purchase homes all over Florida and our experienced staff is ready to make you a cash offer today.

There is perhaps no nightmare that haunts homeowners more than the idea of foreclosure. But sometimes, despite your best efforts, you fall behind on your mortgage payments and find yourself in a situation that feels desperate, heartbreaking, and inescapable. But don’t lose hope!

Just because you’ve found yourself staring into the harsh face of foreclosure does not mean you’re left without options. The process of foreclosure can be quite long, stretching anywhere from six months to a year, and significant amounts of negotiation and paperwork will need to take place between you and your lender before your foreclosure is complete.

Selling a Home in Foreclosure

You may think that your only choice at this point is to let the bank take possession of your home and accept the loss (not to mention the serious accompanying damage to your credit rating). But up until the moment the house is put up for public auction, you still have the freedom to sell it on your own terms.

Prior to the lender seizing the property or selling at auction, your home is actually considered to be in a state of “pre-foreclosure.” This marks a time when you have the chance to work with your lender on satisfying your debt. When considering selling your home, though, make sure to account for any penalties and fees you’ll owe on top of the back mortgage payments, so that you can calculate an asking price you know you will be able to pay in full.

If you communicate openly with your lender and let them know that you’re working to sell the home in order to pay them what you owe, they may even be willing to delay the foreclosure auction to give you ample time to find a buyer. However, the sooner you pull the trigger on deciding to sell, the better, as it will give you plenty of time to get your affairs in order. In addition, your lender will know early on that you’re serious about working towards remediation and repayment.

Easier for Everyone

In Florida, foreclosure is a judicial matter, so the lender has to go through the arduous process of filing a lawsuit in order to foreclose on a property. It’s a lot of hassle for a lender; in fact, you’d make their life a lot easier if you were simply able to pay them what you owe. Approaching things from this mindset may help you work out a timeline that avoids a big hit to your credit score while also saving your lender a lot of time and a major headache.

Going the traditional route for selling will, of course, entail bringing in a realtor and tacking on the associated costs (closing fees, commissions, etc.) that come with them. If the idea of trying to find and pay a realty company to help sell your house in foreclosure makes you anxious, then going with a direct cash buyer might be a good fit for you.

With a direct buyer, you can sell your home before foreclosure in Florida quickly and for cash. If you’re looking for a fast, convenient, and safe way to sell your foreclosed home and settle your debts with your lender so that you can move on with your life, contact Meridian Trust today. We’re ready to help you!

For Sale Home Sign

For many years, short sales have been used by home sellers that have a mortgage loan that is worth more than their residence is worth. Also, struggling borrowers can use the short sale option in order to avoid having their residence foreclosed on. While a short sale can be very helpful, the process of obtaining one is often stressful and time-consuming. If you fail to take your time during the short sale process, you may have a variety of harsh consequences to deal with. Here are some tips on how to get through the short sale process easily. Read more