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How to buy a home after bankruptcy or foreclosure

by Erna Sigurdsson, Realtor

How to buy a home after bankruptcy or foreclosure

Buying a Home After Foreclosure Going through a foreclosure or a bankruptcy is difficult process and is emotionally tolling. It takes time to recover from those and people who have gone through that have doubts about when and if they can buy a home again.


The good news is that you can buy a home again after going through that process. The bad news is that it takes time, persistence and will. It is possible to get back on the horse and become a homeowner again, by making a financial plan and stick to it. It doesn’t happen overnight, it is a good idea to see a qualified credit counselor or a financial planner to get the best advice for your situation to set a plan and goals to stick to.


Check periodically to see what’s in your credit report, www.annualcreditreport.com is the official site to view what is being reported at the three credit reporting agencies. If there is anything there that shouldn’t be there or is being reported incorrectly then you need to work on fixing it now, rather than later when it starts to affect your ability to obtain credit.


Keep some available credit open. Once you pay off a credit card, do not close that account. Part of what goes into your credit score is how much of your available credit you are using. If you start closing accounts as soon as you pay off the charge, then you could be hurting your credit.


Save regularly, by putting a little bit into savings every month, you are proving that you can plan and stick to it and it shows that you are planning ahead for the future. You can also use the savings that you accumulate towards a down payment on a home.

Cash Is King

Cash is King. An old phrase, but still valid today. If you have the cash to buy a home, then you do not need a mortgage and therefore don’t have to worry about your credit and financial history.


Generally it takes years to be able to buy a home after a foreclosure or a bankruptcy. If you were able to do a short sale on your home and avoid a foreclosure, most often, it is about two years until you can buy a home again.

Contact Erna and Petur Sigurdsson, Realtors at The Viking Team, Realty at 321-263-5096 for help buying or selling a home in Longwood, Lake Mary, Altamonte Springs, Sanford, Seminole and Orange County and the surrounding areas of Central Florida. To Search For Homes For Sale in Central Florida Click Here. 

Where is that Foreclosure Data coming from?

by Erna Sigurdsson, Realtor

As we have watched on the news for the past few years the news anchors keep telling us how many people are going into foreclosure because of the economy, some of you may have noticed that there is no consistency among the numbers that they report. It could be 1 in 10 homes are in foreclosure and in another, 1 in 6 homes. The fact is that they are using different sources to support their statements and those sources use different methods of collecting data and doing research. Some of those sources are only using certain areas, while others take a random sample, and yet another may be using information from mortgage industries.

This report, prepared by The Mortgage Bankers Association takes some of the top sources of information for Foreclosure data and analyzes their tactics and how they gather their information.

Contact Erna and Petur Sigurdsson, Realtors at The Viking Team, Realty at 321-263-5096 for help buying or selling a home in Longwood, Lake Mary, Altamonte Springs, Sanford, Seminole and Orange County and the surrounding areas of Central Florida. To Search For Homes For Sale in Central Florida Click Here. 

Realtors Help Homeowners with Mortgage Problems

by Erna Sigurdsson, Realtor

Avoid Foreclosure In Central FloridaAs a Realtor® and a member of this community, it amazes me how many people do not want to face their troubles. Homeowners are facing foreclosure and we are finding that 7 out of 10 homeowners do nothing to try to avoid it. If homeowners would recognize their problems and seek help, most of those homeowners might be able to get a loan modification to stay in their homes and almost all of those that cannot get a loan modification can sell their home short of what they owe on it. There are so many programs out there today that have been created to help homeowners, such as the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives(HAFA), the Realtor Neighborhood Stabilization Project as well as other local and national programs. Those of us that work in these industries for a living are seeing how hard this recession is hitting people; we want to do what we can to help them. We realize that this is not a problem that is just hitting people who poorly managed their money; this is hitting people of all demographics, rich, poor, young and old. I think that homeowners are looking at their current financial situation and thinking that this is because they didn’t do something right, that they somehow failed their families and themselves, when that’s not the case at all. Homeowners who refinanced their homes during the housing bubble, when prices were at the top of the market are extremely anxious because now they are so upside down on their home that they don’t know what to do with themselves. I want to let these homeowners know that we are here to help, you can call your Realtor® and that we can help you. Those Realtors® that have put in the effort and received additional education are your best source. A Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE) or SFR (Short Sale and Foreclosure Resource Certified) have received additional training to help homeowners navigate through the process of getting a loan modification or selling their home as a short sale. This year alone, we are expected to surpass 1,000,000 homes in foreclosure nationwide, lenders loose about twice as much on foreclosure over a short sale and even more if it would have been a loan modification. Lenders are willing to work with homeowners to find alternatives over a foreclosure. If you or someone you know is struggling with making mortgage payments, please seek help. Foreclosures are hurting our economy, your neighborhoods property values and people’s credit and self esteem. In many cases a foreclosure affects families harder than losing a loved one.

Contact Erna and Petur Sigurdsson, Realtors at The Viking Team, Realty at 321-263-5096 for help buying or selling a home in Longwood, Lake Mary, Altamonte Springs, Sanford, Seminole and Orange County and the surrounding areas of Central Florida. To Search For Homes For Sale in Central Florida Click Here. 

Thinking of buying a Short Sale Property?

by Petur Sigurdsson, Realtor

Short Sale propertiesWith approximately 1/3 to 1/2 of short sale contract never closing, you need to choose your Realtor carefully and do your homework.  There is a lot to gain by buying a short sale, the biggest gain is that you will be able to get a larger home for your money or you might be able to get in a neighborhood that you previously could not afford.  Dian Hymer wrote an article on Inman News which sums it all up.  This article is like spoken out of my own heart and is a must read for anyone that is thinking of buying a short sale.  Click here to link to the article.

If you think that you need to sell your home in a Short Sale or that you need help finding a solution to your mortgage problem, then you might want to follow this link to my website http://www.avoidforeclosureincentralflorida.com which explains a lot of the options that a homeowner has today.

Contact Erna and Petur Sigurdsson, Realtors at The Viking Team, Realty at 321-263-5096 for help buying or selling a home in Longwood, Lake Mary, Altamonte Springs, Sanford, Seminole and Orange County and the surrounding areas of Central Florida. To Search For Homes For Sale in Central Florida Click Here. 

Are the Liar Loans HAMPering loan modifications?

by Petur Sigurdsson, Realtor

Distressed homesWhen the Lenders had ample funds to loan and money was burning holes in their pockets, they were creative finding ways to qualify everyone for a mortgage.  The Lenders had their marketing teams work on creating new and effective ways of qualifying people; it seemed to be the goal of getting everyone over their head in debt.  If someone dared to say something negative about their way of doing business, the response was: You’re old fashioned, he is negative, and you’re pessimistic or something even worse.  In their race to top each others marketing they created other loans like: No income, verified assets (NIVA) loans, no income, no assets (NINA) loans and no income, no assets, no job (NINJA) loans among other.  These are what the industry calls LIAR LOANS, but the loan officer also told the buyer that the equity in the home would go up and they would be able to sell with profit in few years.

Let’s look at where we are now!

According to Housingwire.com we here in Florida surpassed California and now rank number two in the Nation with every 165 homes in danger of being bank owned, California has 180 in danger of being bank owned.

According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, third quarter National Delinquency Survey: The non-seasonally adjusted delinquency rate increased from 8.86 percent in the second quarter of 2009 to 9.94 percent this quarter.  Also they state that percent of loans in foreclosure was 4.47, this means that total14.41 percent of all loans are 30+ days late or in foreclosure, which is the highest ever recorded in the MBA survey.

Then according to CNN Money 1 in 4 mortgages are underwater or up side down (negative equity) or within 5% of being there, a total of 13 million mortgages.

As we can see from the above there are a huge number of distressed homes out there.

What about all these rescue programs out there?

There has been a lot of effort from our government to save our homes, some of these programs are geared to help the public while others like the Neighborhood Stabilization Program are geared towards helping the lenders. Also some lenders have created their own programs to assist their borrowers, the sad things about all these programs is they have not worked as well as their designers were hoping.  The fact that only 1,700 homeowners had pass through the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) in September, tells the whole story. It looks like that some homeowners who got these stated loans (liar loans) are afraid to follow up on the modification and for the first time bring in all their finance documents, like tax returns, all bank statements and so on. Then the government has programs for VA loan borrowers, FHA borrowers, some states have programs in place; there are even some Local Initiatives to assist homeowners that are having problems with their mortgages. In addition to all these programs, the courts have implemented mandatory mediation between the lenders and the borrowers when the lenders are trying to foreclose on a home. The courts are doing this due to the fact that many homeowners have complained to the Court about difficulties with communication with their Lenders. 

What can be done to remove the HAMPering out of the HAMP and other programs?

Well I am a Realtor who has spent a lot of time learning about all these programs and how to communicate with homeowners and lenders, among other things that I have done is to study the most in depth class out there, The Certified Distressed Property Expert class and get the CDPE designation. In addition to this I read a lot about these issues. If you go on my main website http://www.thevikingteam.com/ and click on “Links” you will see that I have gathered a lot of links to the websites of all of these programs. The problem is that when you see all of these links you don’t know where to start, the system needs to be made more streamlined and easier to navigate for the homeowner.  I and many of my fellow Realtors have set up websites for homeowners to look for and learn about what is available of assistance.  My website is called: http://www.avoidforeclosureincentralflorida.com/By setting up websites the Realtor is just showing that he cares and is trying to do his best for the homeowner, but this is not enough, more needs to be done and this is what I would like to see:

  1. Service centers in every county where a homeowner who is in trouble or foreseeing problems could go to and talk to a person face to face that would explain to him/her, their situation and guide them on the right path to recovery.
  2. Lenders streamline their phone system and make it more customer friendly, so that a homeowner in trouble who calls in does not have to be on hold for up to an hour or more, and then when they forward the homeowners call it is sent to someone who can help the homeowner (not to a debt collector) and guide him to a real solution. If this would happen then the banks might be able to collect more of the debt and reduce their losses.
  3. I would like to see the media spend more of their time pointing out solutions and guide the homeowner in the right directions. We have all heard several times about scammers and illegal companies that are making money on other people’s problems, not that I am saying that they don’t need to be exposed.  But I would like to see more time spent in getting homeowners to start saving their homes. Unfortunately there are too many homeowners out there that for some reason do not start the process of saving their homes.

 

After reading this article of mine, you might be asking yourself; why is he writing this?  Well the answer is; I am fed up with seeing all this waste of time, funds and family well being that I see in the system today and I am not the kind of guy that sits in the corner and mumbles.  I will try my best to change things to the better.

Contact Erna and Petur Sigurdsson, Realtors at The Viking Team, Realty at 321-263-5096 for help buying or selling a home in Longwood, Lake Mary, Altamonte Springs, Sanford, Seminole and Orange County and the surrounding areas of Central Florida. To Search For Homes For Sale in Central Florida Click Here. 

Freddie Mac to the Rescue!

by Petur Sigurdsson, Realtor

Foreclosed homeIt is admirable to see what the mortgage giant Freddie Mac is trying to do to soften the blow of foreclosure on owners and tenants after foreclosure.  They have launched a new program called “The REO Rental Initiative”, with the goal of soften the blow of foreclosure on owners-occupants and tenants after the foreclosure.  This program can make life much easier for the occupants of a foreclosed home, especially if there are children involved.

If the home is in safe, habitable condition and meets all local codes for rental properties, it can qualify for the program.  Then they will try to find out if the tenant or former owner qualifies for a normal lease based on what is happening in the area of the home and the finance situation of the owner or tenant, i.e. can they pay the normal lease and are they interested in renting the home on a month to month bases.  To learn more about this program CLICK HERE.  

 

Contact Erna and Petur Sigurdsson, Realtors at The Viking Team, Realty at 321-263-5096 for help buying or selling a home in Longwood, Lake Mary, Altamonte Springs, Sanford, Seminole and Orange County and the surrounding areas of Central Florida. To Search For Homes For Sale in Central Florida Click Here. 

Displaying blog entries 1-6 of 6