Last night I actually watched the entire Academy Awards with my family. I don’t remember the last time I ever did that… from the opening number to the Best Picture. This year, I also watched the entire Super Bowl… This is very unusual for me. Then again… we are in truly unusual times. Both of these national events somehow seemed to bring comfort… like apple pie, or chicken pot pie to the national ethos. It felt like we are all one and share a common past time. Last night was truly entertaining, no unnecessary bad jokes or deriding cracks about our government.
But enough of that… lets get back to the issues at hand. On March 4, the Obama Administration will release its details concerning how folks will be able to modify or refinance their mortgages. According to the Sun-Sentinel and Zillow.com, only about 17 percent of South Florida will have enough equity in their homes to refinance. Of course, those won’t be the people facing foreclosure.
You can’t be more than 5 percent underwater. In other words, if your outstanding mortgage principal balance substantially exceeds the value of your home, you will either have to hold on for dear life, do a short sale, or hope that your bank comes to its senses and realizes that a foreclosure is not the answer and will modify your loan by taking a principal reduction haircut.
In fact, we are seeing an entire new industry emerging. Former mortgage brokers, bankers, realtors, real estate attorneys, and appraisers are beginning to organize to assist homeowners with their loan modification needs, especially once the government’s program is announced on March 4, 2009.
In fact on March 5, 2009 we will be conducting one of our monthly free Florida Foreclosure Defense Workshops.
In the mean time, it appears the new government program will be of no use to you if you fall into one of the following categories:
- Investor Property
- Second Mortgages, Equity Lines
- Second Homes
- Jumbo Mortgages
- Too Little Income
- Too Much Income
So… continue to stay tuned! In the interim, continue to enjoy events like the Oscars as they provide a good escape.