What to do When Facing Foreclosure
Resources are available to help save your home if you are facing foreclosure. Contact your mortgage lender to discuss your circumstances as soon as you realize that you're unable to keep up with your mortgage payments. In the video below, see how foreclosure prevention counseling helped a family secure temporary financial assistance in order to keep their home.
The Illinois Foreclosure Prevention Network brings together the services of state agencies and non-profit organizations to help connect struggling homeowners with information they need to keep their homes. Visit the website or call toll-free 1-855-KEEP-411 (1-855-533-7411).
National Foreclosure Mitigation Counseling Program
National Foreclosure Mitigation Counseling Program (NFMC) funds help housing finance agencies, such as IHDA, and other HUD approved housing counseling intermediaries provide free foreclosure intervention and loss mitigation counseling for homeowners in need. The goal of the funding is to expand and supplement counseling opportunities available to families facing delinquency and foreclosure.
Call the toll free hotline (1-800-995-HOPE) or visit www.findaforeclosurecounselor.org to locate a counselor.
Illinois Hardest Hit
The Illinois Hardest Hit program (HHF) assists low- and moderate-income families with up to $35,000 in temporary mortgage payment assistance while they work to regain sufficient income to pay their mortgage.
On July 19, 2013 it was announced that the final date to apply for HHF would be September 30, 2013. The program is now closed for new applications. Thousands of homeowners across Illinois who have experienced a 20 percent drop or more in income have received temporary mortgage assistance. Federal funds are now exhausted.
Currently funded borrowers will not be impacted by the closure of the application process.
If you are currently in need of assistance, the Illinois Foreclosure Prevention Network can connect you to a housing counselor who can suggest other programs you may be eligible for.
Circuit Court of Cook County Mortgage Foreclosure Mediation Program
The Circuit Court of Cook County Mortgage Foreclosure Mediation Program is a partnership between the Circuit Court of Cook County, IHDA and other organizations who joined together to help Cook County homeowners. To qualify, homeowners must be Cook County residents living in a property in foreclosure.
Federal Foreclosure Assistance
Making Home Affordable is a federal program enabling qualified homeowners to modify or refinance their mortgage to make their payments more affordable. The program also helps unemployed homeowners and those who are underwater, or owe more on their mortgage than their home is worth.
More information about federal foreclosure assistance resources can be viewed at HUD’s website.
Stabilizing Urban Neighborhoods (SUN) Initiative
IHDA and Housing Action Illinois want to make homeowners aware of a new option available to help families avoid foreclosure. The Stabilizing Urban Neighborhoods (SUN) Initiative helps homeowners facing eviction or foreclosure to repurchase their homes with mortgages they can afford. The SUN Initiative has helped over 500 families in Maryland, Massachusetts and Rhode Island, and is now available in Illinois. While the SUN program will not work for every household facing foreclosure, the program is another option for counselors to share with their clients.
More information is available on www.sunhomehelp.org.
If you have an IHDA loan and need assistance, please see the IHDA borrowers page.
Homeowners should beware of foreclosure rescue and mortgage modification scams. Scammers make promises they cannot keep, such as guarantees to save your home or lower your mortgage, for a fee. You should never have to pay for foreclosure assistance. Scammers also may pretend they have direct contact with your mortgage servicer when they do not.
Tips to Avoid Scams:
- Beware of anyone who asks for a fee in exchange for a counseling service or modification of a delinquent loan.
- Beware of people who pressure you to sign papers immediately, or who try to convince you they can save your home if you sign or transfer over the deed to your house.
- Do not sign over the deed to your property to any organization or individual unless you are working directly with your mortgage company to forgive your debt.
- Never make a mortgage payment to anyone without your mortgage company’s approval.
- Federal Trade Commission — Watch the Foreclosure Rescue Scams Video on the FTC 's YouTube Channel.
- Office of the Comptroller of the Currency — The U.S. Department of the Treasury's Office of the Comptroller of the Currency provides tips and materials to help homeowners avoid mortgage modification and foreclosure rescue scams.
- The Loan Modification Scam Prevention Network — The Loan Modification Scam Prevention Network is a national coalition of governmental and private organizations created by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, NeighborWorks America™ and the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law to provide resources to educate homeowners about the dangers of loan modification scams and support federal, state and local efforts to combat these scams. If you believe you have been the victim of a scam, you can report the scam through the campaign's online complaint form.
- Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force — The Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force maintains a wide list of resources and information to help find and report suspected cases of financial fraud.
What to Do if You Have Been the Victim of a Scam
If you believe you have been the victim of a scam, file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Visit the FTC's online Complaint Assistant or call 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357) for assistance in English or Spanish.