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If you are behind on your mortgage payments, what are your best options?

Central Texas Families may fall behind on their mortgage payments for many reasons from job loss to medical bills, from retirement to paying payday lenders and credit cards instead of the house payment. But the end result is the same--if you are behind on your mortgage payments, you are at risk of losing your home to foreclosure. A recent study looked at Chapter 13 bankruptcy as a means to save homes for families at risk of foreclosure. (See http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1223262) The study focused primarily on families who filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy to avoid foreclosure in Delaware for the majority of the last decade and compared them to families who did not file bankruptcy to avoid foreclosure. The study found a number of important points. First, it is important to act quickly if you are behind on your house payments. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy will stop a foreclosure and force a mortgage company into a repayment plan over the course of 3 to 5 years. Unfortunately, some families were unable to make their repayments plans and still loss their homes in spite of the bankruptcy. While I believe that new programs that have developed since this study ended are helping families be more likely to be successful in Chapter 13 bankruptcies, sometimes families will still lose their homes if job loss continues or they cannot afford their regular monthly house payment plus the bankruptcy payment. (See http://thekehllawfirm.com/hope-for-homeowners-who-struggling-make-their-house-payments/). However, families who were less than 12 months behind on their house payments when they filed bankruptcy were more likely to succeed in keeping their homes in a successful bankruptcy. The take home message, don't delay. If you are behind on your house payments, talk to an experienced bankruptcy attorney today about your options. The sooner you start fixing your problems the more likely you will be successful in saving your home in the long run. Second, this study also confirmed something that I strongly believe--Chapter 13 bankruptcy is not for everyone. There may be other options to save your home where you can be successful like attempting to modify your home loan as a party of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy.  Finally, one option is simply to let the home go back. I know that is not an appealing option to many of my clients, but if you are unable to afford your home, it might be the best option for your family. (See http://thekehllawfirm.com/cant-afford-your-home-foreclosure-right-for-your-family/). If you are behind on your mortgage payments, don't delay! Seek out help today from experienced staff who can work with you to make a plan. Call 254-633-2876 or email me at [email protected] for a FREE, no-obligation consultation before you lose your home.    

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