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Contact Your Lender to Avoid Foreclosure
Many people avoid calling their lender when they have money troubles. Most of us are embarrassed to discuss our money problems with others or believe that if lenders know we are in trouble, they will rush to collection or foreclosure.

Foreclosure is expensive for lenders, mortgage insurers and investors. HUD/FHA, as well as private mortgage insurance companies and investors like Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, require lenders to work aggressively with borrowers who are facing money problems.

Lenders have workout options to help you keep your home. However, these options work best when your loan is only one or two payments behind. The farther behind you are on your payments, the fewer options are available.

Do not assume that your mortage problem will quickly correct itself. Don't lose valuable time by being overly optimistic. Contact your mortgage lender to discuss your circumstances as soon as you realize that you are unable to make your payments. While there is no guarantee that any particular relief will be given, most lenders are willing to explore every possible option.

Finding Your Lender

Check the following sources for lender contact information:

 -   Your monthly mortgage billing statement
 -   Your payment coupon book
 -   Search the web
 -   Directory assistance or phone book.

Information To Have Ready When You Call:

To help you, lenders typically need:

 -   Your loan account number
 -   A brief explanation of your circumstances
 -   Recent income documents such as pay stubs, Social Security benefits statements, disability, unemployment, retirement, or public assistance. If you are self-employed, have your tax returns or a year-to-date profit and loss statement from your business available for reference)
 -   List of household expenses

Expect to have more than one phone conversation with your lender. Typically, your lender will mail you a "loan workout" package. This package contains information, forms and instructions. If you want to be considered for assistance, you must complete the forms and return them to your lender quickly. The completed package will be reviewed before the lender talks about a solution with you.

Do Not Ignore Mail or Phone Calls From Your Lender

Your lender will try to contact you by mail and phone soon after you stop making payments. It is very important that you respond to the mail and the phone calls offering help. If your lender does not hear from you they will be required to start legal action leading to foreclosure. This will substantially increase the cost of bringing your loan current. Do not ignore contact from your lender.

If You Have an FHA Insured Loan

HUD's National Servicing Center works closely with customers who have FHA insured loans. Check your mortgage document or ask your lender if your loan is FHA insured. Do you feel your lender is not responding to your questions? Do you want assistance contacting your lender? HUD's National Servicing Center is ready to help you.

Return to Avoiding Foreclosure

This information is brought to you through the collaborative efforts of HUD/FHA, the Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Labor, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and members of the mortgage industry.