If I file for bankruptcy can I avoid foreclosure and keep my condo

Asked almost 6 years ago - Beverly, MA

I'm a teacher paying 1 1/2 of my paychecks to my mortgage alone. The condo where I live (there is one more family here) is having parties every night and I'm stuck paying for the electricity b/c it's attached to my electric box ( I didn't know this when I bought the place). I have to charge everything my son or I need b/c every penny goes to my mortgage and bills. If I foreclose, how long will my credit be affected? I can't afford to be this broke anymore-I don't even have money for food. Any ideas would be really appreciated.

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Glenn F Russell JR

    Contributor Level 8

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    Answered . Hello:

    If you file a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy, all this will do is allow you to make current payments, and an extra amount to pay off any arrearages. In other words you'd have a higher monthly payment than you do now.

    Another option would be to look into the mortgage you took out, to see if there was any lender irregularity, fraud, or any other defenses you had to foreclosure.

    The last fall back position would be to seek a "short sale", that is getting your lender to agree to accept less money than the market value of the property. Traditionally, any shortfall was treated as income to the debtor, however congress passed a moratorium on this that is still in effect.

    Or you could seek your lender to accept a "deed in lieu of foreclosure". Essentially, this is basically telling the lender here's the keys, see ya.

    The main question you have to ask yourself is, can I really afford this mortgage payment? Frome your post, I am thinking that answer is an obvious no. Therefore, what you need to think about is either challenging the underlying mortgage itself, or making plans to vacate on your terms, not the lenders.

    And that whole electric thing sounds very fishy to me

    Glenn F. Russell, Jr.
    www.foreclosuresinmass.com

  2. Barton Sheldon Strock

    Contributor Level 10

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    Lawyer agrees

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    Answered . I am not licensed to preactice in your state so what I tell you is for educational purposes only. First, you need to get out of there. It was bad investment and you can no longer afford it. The electrical issue, the loan issue would all be great for litigation but A) you cannot afford to litgate these issues B)the stress on you from the litigation will be tremendous( most people are not cut out for it and C) even if you litigate it you cannot afford it and don't want to live there anymore under the circumstances.

    Bankruptcy may eliminate your other debts. You must check with an attorney familiar with bankruptcy to see if your income qualifies for chapter 7 - liquidation of the debts. Most county bar associations have a low cost referral service. At the same time you check how long a foreclosure takes in your area. You may be able to live there without paying for 4,6, 12 months or more. It depends upon a lot. Remember you will have to put away enough money to to rent a place - 1st and last month's rent and a month securty.

    Your credit will be screwed up for quite awhile but I suspect the rules will change with time as no one is qualified to buy a car or anything else.

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