Portland Foreclosure Attorneys
Save Your Home in Portland with Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP
Facing foreclosure can be terrifying. Many times people are overwhelmed when they get behind on their mortgage payments and don’t know what to do. In fact, if you are three or more payments behind on your home, the mortgage company may stop accepting payments from you.
Many unforeseen circumstances can lead to foreclosure proceedings, such as:
- Financial stress from high medical bills
- Job-related injuries
- A reduction in your hours at work
- A reduction in job-related benefits
Most of our clients never thought they would face foreclosure, and many feel frustrated or even embarrassed with their situation. However, if you let that shame delay you in seeking help, you can make the situation worse. You should contact a skilled foreclosure defense attorney right away to help you create a foreclosure defense strategy. Our dedicated attorneys serve Portland and surrounding areas.
Do not let embarrassment hold you back from seeking relief from foreclosure. Contact Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP online or at (503) 664-3134 today to avoid foreclosure in Portland, OR.
Can I Get Foreclosure Protection?
If you are unable to pay your mortgage due to the financial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be eligible for foreclosure protection. Throughout the start of the pandemic, there have been many actions taken to protect homeowners from losing their houses as they could not have predicted their financial struggles. Let your attorney help you learn more about this and potentially prevent your home from foreclosure.
Do Not Run Away from Foreclosure in Portland, OR
One of the biggest mistakes people make when a bank is threatening foreclosure is that they wait too long to act. Ignoring notices and hoping the situation goes away are not viable strategies.
If a creditor is threatening to foreclose on your home, the first step is to see a qualified foreclosure defense lawyer right away. Many strategies can stay a foreclosure and give you time to make things right. A second mortgage is also not a great way to deal with foreclosure in most cases. You end up spending more money and losing equity in your home. We can help you explore alternatives.
How to stop foreclosure
There are only 4 ways to stop a foreclosure sale: (1) cure the default, also called "reinstating" the loan, (2) pay off the loan in full, (3) negotiate an extension with the lender, or (4) file for bankruptcy.
No person is eligible to file bankruptcy unless that person has first attended a credit counseling session and obtained a certificate of completion within 180 days prior to the bankruptcy petition date. If you procrastinate, you may not be able to use bankruptcy to stop your foreclosure sale because you might not be able to get your counseling certificate in time.
Despite advertisements, you may see from some attorneys, filing a bankruptcy is not something that should be done in a few minutes or hours before the foreclosure sale. Filing for bankruptcy is a comprehensive process that must include a listing of all of your assets and liabilities. Failure to properly prepare the bankruptcy petition may result in the loss of other assets that you would normally be entitled to keep.
So, even if you believe you will cure the default or sell your home before the date of the foreclosure, it may be in your best interest to consult with a lawyer well in advance of the sale so that you are fully aware of all of your options. Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP can work with you to try to cure the default or help you sell your home. At the same time, we can get everything ready for you to file bankruptcy just prior to foreclosure, just in case you are unable to cure the default, get an extension, or close a sale prior to the foreclosure sale. You can, and should, consider bankruptcy your "last-chance, ace-in-the-hole" if all other options fail.
a. How do I cure/reinstate the default?
Under Oregon law, the Trustee has to stop the foreclosure sale if you pay the loan current at any time prior to the fifth day before the foreclosure sale. You would have to pay all missed payments, late charges, foreclosure fees and costs, and the lender's attorney's fees. You can request the exact cure amount from the Trustee. If you do attempt to reinstate the loan, please be aware that the Trustee will only accept certified funds.
b. Can I negotiate with the Trustee/lender?
Most major lenders have special departments with the authority and the ability to stop a foreclosure sale, provided you can reach an agreement with them. Each lender has its own unique programs and methods for negotiating and settling, but you should be prepared that any settlement will usually require a lump sum payment at the outset and installment payment arrangements to cure the remaining arrears. Do not rely on an oral or verbal promise by a lender or trustee – be sure to get any agreement with the lender in writing! Agreements with a lender are not enforceable in Oregon unless they are in writing and signed by the lender.
c. Can bankruptcy save my house?
A provision of the Bankruptcy Code called the "automatic stay" will stop foreclosure immediately upon the filing of a bankruptcy. The "automatic stay" applies in both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 cases but may not apply if you previously filed bankruptcy. If you have prior bankruptcies, you need to see a lawyer right away to determine if a bankruptcy stay will arise in your case or not. Bankruptcy Chapter 7 will only provide temporary relief from foreclosure, while Chapter 13 will allow you to force the lender to accept a 3 to 5-year plan to cure the arrearage. You should consult with an attorney from Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP to determine whether a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13 is best for your situation. Bankruptcy can be that last-minute reprieve that saves your house when all other options have failed.
How Can Our Firm Help You? Call (503) 664-3134.
At Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP, we have experience with all kinds of consumer bankruptcy, from the simplest to the most complex. In fact, many other bankruptcy lawyers in the area refer their difficult cases to us. This experience means that we can recommend a broad range of strategies, as well as readily handle unexpected problems that arise in your foreclosure defense. Many people face foreclosure, but the good news is that there are ways to avoid losing your home. Let us help.
Contact Vanden Bos & Chapman, LLP for an appointment with our Foreclosure defense attorneys today at (503) 664-3134.