When I got the news that I was rejected from the Home Affordable Mortgage Program I was really, really upset.
To the point of tears.
And, might I add, a little hysterical.
For those of you who are long time readers of this blog, you'll remember that it took me 11 long months to find another job after my layoff from my previous employer of 9 years.
Usually foreclosures start at or around the 90 day mark.
We've had five in our association over the years so I've been at ground zero and am somewhat familiar with the process.
While it can take over a year, once it starts you either have to have a pile of money fall out the sky to stop it or sell your home.
Right now, neither is not a viable option. Who in the good Lord's name is going to rent to someone who dosen't have a job? Even the best do gooder liberal has bills to pay in these uncertain economic times.
I know very few people who can subsidize others right now.
So I knew that I'd have to help myself.
When I calmed down, dried my tears and had a few glasses of wine, I crafted this letter:
I just received a letter from my mortgage servicer letting me know that I DIDN'T qualify for the Home Affordable Modification Program AND due to my unemployment the the principal and interest that I can pay is unacceptable to the mortgage servicer.
What does this mean?
It means that as of the end of October, my mortgage goes back up to it's original payment (I was on a modification plan for $XXX) of $X,XXX.
I bring in whopping $X,XXX a month on unemployment and whatever I make at my waitressing job (usually under $XXX a month).
My lender said that they can't work with me on another loan modification program until I get a job to provide sufficient income.
I have never heard something so ass backwards in my life. At this point, I stand a very real chance of being foreclosed on.
When you hear about the program, you're under the impression that it's set up to help.
You lose your job through no fault of your own and you want to do right and keep your house, so you report your change in situation to your lender.
At this point honesty---for me at least---has not been the best policy.
It seems that the Treasury Department didn't plan for people having problems with their mortgage due to unemployment rather than being "upside down" in their mortgages. A part of the letter reads:
"The reason you do not qualify is that you did not pass the U.S. Treasury Department's Net Present Value (NPV) Test. The NPV test determined that the amount realized by sale of your property following foreclosure exceeds the amount that would be obtained through a modification of your mortgage."
I thought the point of the program was to keep people in their homes?
Call me at (XXX) XXX-XXXX if you'd like to discuss the situation further.
I seriously don't know what I'm going to do.
The Woodlawn Wonder
I sent the letter to President Obama, Senator Richard Durbin, Congressman Bobby Rush, State Senator Kwame Raoul and State Representative Barbara Flynn Currie last Monday, October 12th.
Oh yeah, and a few members of the press.
Since it was a legal holiday I knew I wouldn't hear from anyone for a couple of days. Nonetheless, on Wednesday I went ahead and did some follow up.
I was pleasantly surprised at the progress I made and also received a game changing suggestion.