Saving Your Home from Foreclosure
By Kui Chow Lester
I am a realtor with Friendly Isle Realty, and while we’d rather see people stay in their homes, we’ve had many people come to us recently because they’ve already lost their homes to foreclosure. If you wait too long, it can be too late to save your home. But if you take action before you start getting notices and follow the steps below, you may be able to refinance, negotiate with your bank or try to sell before you lose your house and credit to foreclosure. We are there to help if you need assistance.
1. See if you can refinance because the interest rates are the lowest in history. It can greatly reduce your payments. Don’t wait till it’s too late to refinance. It seems like a lot of work but it can save you hundreds each month off your mortgage depending on the interest rate you are paying. You can do this by calling a mortgage company – shop around for the best rates, don’t fall for sales pitches. Mortgages can be confusing, so contact your local realtor for help. I also recommend calling Molokai girl Lima Sawyer Naipo, a home mortgage consultant with Wells Fargo in Hilo.
2. If you can’t get financing and you don’t think you will be able to make your payments, you should call your bank. Notify them of your financial difficulties instead of ignoring the problem. Don’t be embarrassed to ask for help. If you need to, you can put your house up for sale before you realize you can’t make your payments and potentially lose it to foreclosure, which will ruin your credit.
3. For those who are renting, you may be paying more for rent than you would on financing if you purchased a home. Some Molokai residents can qualify for mortgage financing with 0 to 3.5 percent down payments. Now is a good time to buy a house because prices have dropped drastically with some of the lowest interest rates in history, and many people can afford homes now when they couldn’t previously.
Lima will be visiting Molokai on Nov. 10 and 11 to help anyone with mortgage questions. Call her at 808-935-3953 ext. 1002 to make an appointment. Please call Kui for additional advice at 553-3666 at Friendly Isle Reality.