Writings and observations

Not yet foreclosed

An example of how life can change depending on what the laws in your area are. Here’s one about to start in Oregon (notification from the attorney general’s office):

With Senate Bill 1552 taking effect tomorrow, homeowners threatened with foreclosure now have the right to meet with their mortgage servicer face-to-face in mediation before final foreclosure decisions are made. The new law also addresses a common complaint known as “dual-tracking.” Mortgage servicers will no longer be permitted to foreclose while negotiations are ongoing for loan modifications or other foreclosure avoidance measures. …

Beginning on July 11, homeowners who receive a notice of default will receive information on free foreclosure counseling and low-cost mediation services. Mediation services will be provided to homeowners at a subsidized rate of no more than $200. Funding for the program comes from mortgage servicers and from funds allocated by the Legislature from a national settlement with five large banks. Homeowners who are at-risk of foreclosure, but not in default, can also schedule mediation. During mediation sessions homeowners will be able to explore alternatives to foreclosure including loan modifications, refinancing, short sales and other options …

Which seems like a logical way to go, compared to the counterproductive foreclosures that too often happen. (Don’t get us started: A neighbor who had lived with his family in a house next to ours for more than 15 years lost work for a couple of months due to an injury, got behind on the mortgage but then caught up, but too late – the bank foreclosed before they had time even to respond, and kicked the family out. And really don’t get us started on what’s happened to the property since then.)

Not all states have such a system in place. But now, Oregon does.

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