How to Further Heal Florida’s Foreclosure Problem

Sarah ParrI was contacted by a blogger who wanted to post as a guest on my page.  After reading some of her work, I decided to give it a go.  Here is a guest post by Sarah Parr. Sarah Parr is a Central Florida-based writer who blogs about foreclosure issues in America.

 

How to Further Heal Florida’s Foreclosure Problem

Florida, with the nation’s highest foreclosure rate for the sixth consecutive month, still needs healing from the foreclosure crisis. Florida reported one foreclosure for every 282 housing units last month, according to data from RealtyTRAC. The statistics also show that one in 849 homes in the United States faced a type of foreclosure action last month, further proving that the reality of distressed homeowners still exists.

In order for the housing market to continue rebounding, it’s time lenders, courts and legislatures made more progress in handling foreclosures better and providing additional relief to homeowners.

Prevent dual-tracking with better communication

It can be difficult communicating with a mortgage company. Often, a company passes a borrower around to many different departments of the company, and the borrower speaks with many people about the same issue. Some homeowners report that they have faxed over the same document many times. Important paperwork can go missing, and instances of “dual-tracking” have been reported recently. Dual-tracking occurs when a homeowner receives a notice of foreclosure around the same time he or she is discussing a loan modification with the lender. Dual-tracking will be restricted in January 2014, but until then, it could continue occurring. A single point of contact for each borrower could potentially solve the problem of scattered communication and dual-tracking mistakes with banks and lenders.

Alleviate backlog of cases, with homeowners’ rights in mind

States that process foreclosure cases solely through the courts see some of the longest processing times for foreclosure-related documents. Florida foreclosure attorneys handle foreclosure documents that take nearly 29 months to process, compared with the nation’s average of 13 months. This forms a build-up of cases for courts and more anxiety for homeowners. States that process cases through administrative processes in addition to judicial-foreclosures see shorter processing times for foreclosure-related documents. Currently, a handful of legislation is floating around in Florida’s legislature with the intention of curing the build-up of foreclosure cases.

Protect homeowners with bill of rights

Certain states, such as California, have passed several bill of rights measures to protect homeowners and further regulate the mortgage and housing relief industries. The law prohibits a few practices coupled with predatory lending: dual tracking and “robo-signing,” a term describing the robotic signing and production of fraudulent mortgage documents. California’s law also mandates that lenders provide a single person of contact for the borrower, and gives the borrower the power to sue for violations of the laws. California has seen a decrease in foreclosure activity since its law went into effect early this year.

Based on the ideas proposed by many different people, Florida will likely see changes in its foreclosure process soon.

 

Trying to modify? Can’t be foreclosed on during the process — anymore.

When it comes to banks, many times the left hand doesn’t know (or chooses not to acknowledge) what the right hand is doing . Looks like they are required to now… Among the new mortgage rules to protect homeowners from foreclosure is a rule that prohibits servicers from foreclosing on borrowers who are seeking loan modifications.

Read CNN Money’s story covering what banks can’t do to mortgage holders facing foreclosure here:  New rules aim to protect homeowners from foreclosure

 

Free Money Deadline Extended in Florida – Again.

Slightly more than half of the people eligible for money from bank settlements on wrongful foreclosure suits have not stepped forward to lay claim to this cash.  The deadline to file was extended bank in January, and has been extended again to February 15 in Florida.

Qualified candidates are eligible for payment of a couple hundred dollars up to $125,000.

For more info visit www.nationalmortgagesettlement.com

Click here to read comments from Florida Attorney General, Pam Bondi  http://www.floridarealtors.org/NewsAndEvents/article.cfm?p=3&id=286633

So Many People Passing Up “Free Money”….I Don’t get It.

The only reason  “free money” is in parentheses is because this free money is money the American people should have had in their pockets all along.  Money big banks have squandered from the people for their own profit and gain.  Money gained from profiting on others misfortune.  Money gained from improperly foreclosing on countless properties when other alternatives were available.  Money gained through robo-signing.  Money being paid out because of the robo-signing scandal.

As part of settlement for this robo-signing debacle, homeowners who had a home foreclosed on in 2008-2011 and whose loan was serviced by Bank of America, Ally/GMAC, Citi, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo & Co. and others could be entitled to a nice little chunk of change.  Eligible borrowers can received hundreds of dollars up to $125,000!  There is $25 billion dollars set aside to be distributed to people whose home was improperly foreclosed on –  $170 million of it set aside for Florida alone!  All you have to do is submit a claim form.

Unfortunately, two-thirds of the people who have been sent notices have not stepped forward and submitted a claim!  This is for real folks, “free money” for your foreclosure being handled improperly.  Personally, I feel it is a small victory – small, but certainly worth claiming.  True victory will be had when big banks and corporations are escorted out of government, and the country is run for the people and by the people; that’s another story though.

In the meantime, go claim your cash!  Here is the link to get started.  Hurry though, the clock is ticking.  The Deadline (which has been extended once) is January 18, 2013.

http://www.nationalmortgagesettlement.com/