Millions of homeowners in the United States—

6.3 million in fact—are more than 30 days late on

their mortgage payments and are in some stage of


If you are among them, you are in good company.

This is not the first time that our country has experienced

a financial downturn, but it is the first time most of us can

remember that we’ve experienced a sustained downturn in real

estate values.

Nearly one fourth of all U.S. homeowners are “underwater”

on their mortgage—meaning they owe more on their home

than they could net from selling it in today’s market. What this

means for the financially strapped homeowner: selling their

home is no longer the obvious, short-term solution to raise

cash and cut expenses.

Talk about a dilemma: Can’t afford to stay in your home

and can’t afford to sell it.

Far too often, homeowners in this situation become frozen

in action, and that’s understandable. On the surface, it can

appear that the only option is to let their home slip into


It’s happened so many times over the past few years that

banks now have more foreclosed properties on their books

than they can expect to sell in an entire year.

Banks aren’t in the real estate business. They don’t want to

own homes and if there’s one word that describes how banks

feel about foreclosures right now it’s:


As a result, banks are now offering significant financial

incentives to pursue short sales and they’ve tightened

their processes to ensure efficient turnaround of short sale

applications. Loan modification options have also been

expanded, and are among a host of alternatives to avoid


The federal government, along with many state and local

agencies, have stepped up their foreclosure prevention

initiatives as well, because the bottom line: foreclosures are a

disaster for all concerned.

What to do NOW

Begin by aligning yourself with a trusted professional who has

the knowledge and integrity to determine the best solution for

you and is committed to seeing you through every step of the

way. As anyone with an unaffordable, underwater mortgage

knows, the situation is complicated and the stakes are high.

Real estate agents who have achieved the Certified Distressed

Property Expert (CDPE) designation have proactively sought the

best expertise and insights within the distressed properties arena.

They are required to complete an intensive training curriculum,

and remain on top of constantly evolving developments. CDPE

agents close four times as many transactions every year as the

average agent, and as such, can be counted on to negotiate

the best foreclosure-avoidance options for their clients with

unsurpassed expertise, efficiency and ethics.

© 2011 Distressed Property Institute, LLC All Rights Reserved. The above brokerage assumes no responsibility nor guarantees the accuracy of this information and is not engaged in the practice

of law nor gives legal advice. It is strongly recommended that you seek appropriate professional counsel regarding your rights as a homeowner.



Foreclosure: Not an Option

By definition, foreclosure is a legal process that

results in the termination of all rights to the property

held by the homeowner covered in a mortgage. The

process, in which the lender claims ownership of the

property, begins when the homeowner fails to make

mortgage payments when they are due—this is called

delinquency. Typically, a formal demand for payment

is issued from the lender through a Notice of Default.

Although this varies by state, the lender will often

issue this notice when the homeowner has been three

months delinquent on the mortgage payments.

Here are some of the main reasons why you

don’t want to let your home go into foreclosure:

Foreclosure becomes part of the public record, and


can remain on a person’s credit history for seven to 10




Foreclosure can challenge future employment


Foreclosure can leave you at risk for future deficiency

 judgments, which is the lender’s ability to pursue any 

debts you owe them for an indefinite period of time



ure can even become an issue against









security clearance.