Foreclosure Lawyers: Red Flags
Foreclosure — the word itself carries a stigma. When people buy a new home, they spend tens of thousands in researching, preparing, and settling in the new environment. However, due to things that might be beyond their control — such as layoffs — people may suddenly find themselves unable to pay off their monthly mortgage. All these result in the bank trying to repossess the home, in an action of equity.
The good news is that there are certain steps one could take to avoid the completion of a foreclosure. In fact, several government initiatives are already in place that can help push for a renegotiation instead — this includes the HARP or Home Affordable refinance Program, and the 2009 “Making Home Affordable” Plan. However, this does not mean that countering foreclosure will be easy — through the process of refinancing, the bank stands to earn less than what was originally projected. This naturally means that the bank will pull out everything at its disposal in order to stop a renegotiation from pushing through.
If this sounds difficult, that is because it is — and it would be preferable to have someone do it for you instead. This is where a foreclosure attorney comes in. It is important to look for someone you can trust within your locale to help you with all the paperwork and haggling involved in the process. And choosing a good Long Island foreclosure lawyer is not too easy, either.
Say you walk into an attorney’s office, describe your problems, and get a deal on the spot. Beware when this happens — a reliable attorney will get all the possible details from you even before agreeing to take up the case. One very important factor is income — not to pay the Long Island foreclosure lawyer, but for him to understand if you have the means to support the house. If the lawyer starts agreeing to help save your house without knowing this very basic fact, then you are in bad company.
A trustworthy Long Island foreclosure lawyer is also completely honest. There are some times when the best that a lawyer can do is to stall the foreclosure proceedings, until their clients can get back on their feet and find an income stream to help pay off the debts. On the same vein, beware those who portend doom, saying that they can only stall the proceedings until you finally lose the legal battle. Some of these are only fishing for you to pay more, so that they will give you “the best that they have”.
Speaking of rates, there are also those unscrupulous Long Island foreclosure lawyers that charge flat rates to handle a case from the beginning to its resolution. This sounds like a great deal, but this could actually mean that they do not have enough cases under their belt that they are willing to give their services out at a cheap rate. Or, they may actually be making you pay for what their service is worth — in this case, they may be handling too many cases that they cannot put enough time to put up a decent fight for you.
What you should look for is a lawyer with a concrete plan to help you out. Your trusted Long Island foreclosure lawyer should be able to give you concrete steps for negotiating a modification of the mortgage, or filing a fraud complaint — any plan of action, as long as it is achievable. When you leave your attorney’s door, you should have a clear direction to take in your plan to save your life’s greatest investment.