Will I Lose My Home After Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in New Jersey?

Will I Lose My Home After Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in New Jersey?

Many of my clients ask if they will lose their home after their Chapter 7 bankruptcy is discharged. The short answer is that it depends if you are current on the mortgage payments or not. You will not lose your home simply because you filed bankruptcy. If your payments are delinquent, the mortgage company may start or continue a foreclosure even though you filed bankruptcy.

Below are four things you can do to keep your home after a bankruptcy discharge.

  1. First and foremost, it is imperative that you keep making your payments on time to avoid losing your home. This may be difficult, but it is important if you can afford it.
  2. Some of my clients often offer their homes back to the bank in the form of a deed to avoid foreclosure or the release of their mortgage. This requires a lot of paperwork to complete, but I can guide you through this process. The main issue that can stand in your way of this option is if there are inferior liens on your home. The junior lienholders will want to receive payment in addition to your bank. Some banks are willing to pay for your moving expenses if you vacate the premises by a specific date. This option is called  “cash for keys.”
  3. Another option is to request a loan modification if you can’t pay your mortgage. The lender will review your current and future income and expenses to see if a loan modification is a good option. If you receive a loan modification, the lender may reduce the interest rate, extend the length of your loan and in some cases, reduce the balance owed. I am able to guide your through this process.
  4. Sometimes the best thing to do is to do nothing. If the mortgage is not paid, your lender has the right to foreclose. This process may take at least 6-9 months to complete (often much longer). You will then have time to consider and save for “Plan B.”

The above methods can help you keep your home once your bankruptcy has been discharged. Contact me today to schedule your consultation.