You have three ways to deal with foreclosure.

  • First, catch up on payment in full, which is usually easier said than done.
  • Second, hire an attorney to defend you in the foreclosure case. That’s a good option if you have a strong case for wrongful foreclosure or wrongdoing on the part of the lender, or when the mortgage balance exceeds the property value and you apply for a loan modification, or if you plan to sell the house within a few months and want to complete a non-distressed sale.
  • Third, file Chapter 13 bankruptcy that stays the foreclosure proceeding (pauses the proceeding) while you either repay your arrears (back payments) over five years (in addition to your ongoing regular payments, or sell the house, or apply for a loan modification (usually effective for 6-12 months). The bankruptcy option is usually considerably less costly than foreclosure defense. Therefore, it should be the preferred method when there’s a lot of equity in your property and the foreclosure is due to non-payments and not mortgage lender’s fraud or wrongdoing.

There’s no one-size-fits-all solution, and your best option is to talk to a professional who specializes in the laws governing your state. If you live in Hawaii, we offer free consultations in Honolulu, or over the phone if you can’t travel.