Many people who have been foreclosed upon hire a credit counselor to help mop up that messy credit report. Not only are all the missed payments tarnishing your record, but there's a "Notice of Trust Sale" and a "Trust Deed Sale" sitting ugly as well. Chances are, there is more than one area you are struggling with, so prioritizing with a counselor can definitely help. It's good to have someone working with you to improve your situation and increase the bad credit scores you've suffered.
While the full impact of a foreclosure isn't likely to go away over the next year, you needn't suffer mercilessly for the next seven. Remember that the last 12 months factor most prevalently on your credit score, so a quick rebound is your best chance at regaining financial freedom once again.
First of all, you'll have to face the long-term repercussions and navigate the waves of your poor decision if the foreclosure is already on your record. The next five years could be problematic and you may be turned down for lines of credit, a car loan or a personal loan.
To get the best interest rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage, banks will require you to put 20% down and have a credit score of 740 or higher, although some banks may settle for 620 with 10% down. To get back on track with clear credit, pull your credit report at "Annual Credit Report" to see where else you may need repairs.
So which is worse for your credit score, a foreclosure or a bankruptcy? Even though bankruptcy stays on your credit for 10 years and a foreclosure for 7, "a foreclosure is very serious to mortgage lenders," said Ray Hooper, Education and Housing Director for the Consumer Credit Counseling Service.
"They're going look at a foreclosure more seriously than they will a bankruptcy that doesn't include the house." Hooper says if you're receiving default notices but still want to keep your house, then you'll need to catch up on those missed payments.
You can modify the agreement to a lower interest loan or ask for forbearance, which involves the lender agreeing to suspend payments until you get back on your feet. If you outspent yourself and wound up in a real pickle, then you can ask the lender to hold off on foreclosing until you sell.
In some cases, you might not get the asking price and will still owe money to the lender. This procedure is called a short sale. In other cases, you may negotiate a "deed in lieu of foreclosure," which means you will give your house back to the bank and walk away with nothing, including clear credit.
When faced with foreclosure, the first thing many people consider is bankruptcy. However, this should be used as a last resort because it is so damaging to your credit report. If you file for bankruptcy, then you will also still have to make your monthly payments, although you'll have the protection of the court while you catch up.
What many people don't realize is that they can usually negotiate a repayment plan with their lender, which will allow them to catch up on missed payments over a period of 3-18 months, bit by bit. This will only have a moderate effect on your credit score that can be repaired within a year or two.
If you began missing payments due to an unexpected medical expense, a loss of employment or another incident, then you can apply for a special forbearance, which will give you a small grace period before the payment schedule is resumed.
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