My existing 30 year fix mortgage monthly payments are too high and becoming problematic for us to pay. What, if any, new federal laws might help us reduce the payments? Thanks, Jim
Hi Jim, there are a few things you can do, but much depends on your personal situation. It also depends on the type of loan you currently have. Without knowing the specifics, let me try to point you in a direction that will help. If the payments are too high because the interest rate is 6.5% or higher, you might find some relief by refinancing. If you have a FHA or VA loan, there is a very simple process to get this done. Find a FHA/VA Direct Lender in your area and the process should be rather hassle free. If you have a conventional loan, a more traditional refinance will also help, however you do have to go through the qualification process, property appraisal, and other related closing costs.
If you are having trouble with the payments because of illness, injury, loss of job, or similar challenge, you need to call your loan servicer (that information will be on your payment coupon) and talk to them. Be sure to explain your situation clearly and honestly. Banks don't want to own homes, they want loans repaid. Right now, HR 3221 allows loan servicers to modify terms of loans in order to avoid default. It doesn't require them to help you, it provides them the opportunity to look at your specific situation and make a determination on what to do.
There are non-profit groups that will help you. Just be careful. There are still those who would promise you the world and take your money. Call your servicer first. If you don't find the answer you are looking for, consult with a local group in your area that provides free homeowner assistance. If you have a FHA/VA loan, then consult with your local Direct Lender.