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Foreclosure Fear in CA Shouldn’t Paralyze Homeowners

September 20, 2007

California is among the top three states in number of mortgage foreclosures and, for residents who fall behind on their house payments, financial advisers say there are three things to remember: communicate, communicate, communicate.

Yamileth Guevara with the East L.A. Community Coalition says people falling behind often ignore letters and calls from their lender in fear the lender wants to foreclose and take their house. She says that isn't the case, especially in the current housing market.

"We've talked to numerous lenders regarding this and they really are trying to help homeowners save their homes, not foreclose on the property."

If homeowners find bank notices confusing, she urges them to visit a nonprofit housing advocacy group or counselor for help. According to Guevara, lenders are willing to negotiate or perhaps delay any legal proceedings until the house is sold.

"Lenders will create payment plans or may agree to allow owners to temporarily halt payments. They may even restructure loans."

Deborah Smith/Chris Thomas, Public News Service - CA