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Foreclosure

Creditor Representation
Hawkins Law offers experienced representation for banks and lending institutions in the areas of collections, bankruptcy and foreclosure workouts in both Ohio and Kentucky.  Our familiarity with the courts and their requirements helps to expedite the process bringing each case to an equitable resolution in the shortest amount of time possible.


Mortgage Modification

Mortgage Modification may be an option for homeowners that are having trouble making their monthly mortgage payments.  Under the federal “Making Home Affordable” Program, http://www.makinghomeaffordable.gov/, a homeowner may qualify for a mortgage modification if all of the follow conditions apply:

  • The property in question is the primary residence.
  • The principal amount of the first mortgage is less than $729,750.00.
  • The homeowner is having trouble paying the mortgage due to a recent increase in the mortgage payment amount, a recent reduction in income or a hardship that has significantly increased the household expenses (i.e.: medical bills, etc.).
  • The current mortgage was obtained prior to January 1, 2009.
  • The payment on the first mortgage (including principal, interest, taxes, insurance, homeowner’s association dues – if applicable) is more than 31% of the homeowner’s current gross income.

 

The reality of home mortgage modification is that the decision to modify the loan is still at the discretion of the bank or mortgage servicing company.  As such, most homeowners need to be at least 2 to 3 payments behind and facing the real possibility of foreclosure before the lender will consider a modification.

While a homeowner does not need an attorney to file a mortgage loan modification request, it can be very difficult to get the bank or mortgage servicing company to consider the request.  Statistics show that many banks and mortgage servicing companies are not proponents of mortgage modifications.  Many lenders feel that an unacceptable percentage of modified loans will ultimately fail again.  As such, many lenders will proceed with foreclosure as quickly as possible in order to get a bad loan off the books and focus on better lending opportunities for the bank in the future.

At Hawkins Law, we understand banking and real estate.  We know how to get the lender’s attention and present a workable mortgage modification plan that is beneficial for both the lender and the homeowner.

Some of the modifications to the mortgage loans we seek to achieve are as follows:

  • Extending the loan amortization period, in some cases, to 40 years
  • Reducing the interest rate
  • Converting the loan from a variable to a fixed interest rate
  • Elimination of the cost of lender forced homeowner insurance
  • Analyzing and correcting escrow calculations

 

While every mortgage modification is a separate negotiation and we cannot guarantee the result, the following is a recent example of an outcome we obtained for a client facing foreclosure:

Before Modification:  $120,000 mortgage, variable interest rate - then at 9.35% APR, $1,810 monthly mortgage payment, bank required forced insurance policy as part of the mortgage escrow, homeowner 4 months behind on mortgage payments.

After Modification:  Note converted to 40 year amortization term with a fixed interest rate at 6.45%, forced insurance policy requirement eliminated, all past due mortgage amounts and late fees combined into the modified loan, new mortgage payment of $785 per month.

Hawkins Law provides free initial consultation if you would like to discuss your options regarding mortgage loan modification.


Borrower Defense

Hawkins Law offers borrower foreclosure defense representation to homeowners seeking a mortgage loan modification or foreclosure mediation.  We also seek redress on behalf of our borrower clients in foreclosure actions that were improperly filed or where the lender or mortgage servicer violated the borrower’s rights as a consumer debtor.

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