Are you about to fall behind on your mortgage, or already falling behind? Are you late due to unforeseen or unavoidable short term hardship?
A loan forbearance is an agreement you make with your lender which helps you temporarily renegotiate your present loan so you can catch up over time.
During the time frame which is set, the lender will agree not to foreclose on you, and you will be given an extension on the time period of your loan or other loan modifications which will allow you to eventually become current on your payments.
A mortgage forbearance is not a long term answer to your problems if those problems are also long term in nature. If you have a temporary setback in your finances which is causing you to fall behind for the short term, a loan forbearance can help you get back on track without damaging your credit or causing you to lose your home.
If your setback is indefinite in length though, your lender probably isn’t going to give you forbearance. You’ll need to seek another means of holding onto your home.
Similarly, if your setback relates to the terms of the loan (not just the amount of the monthly payments), forbearance also won’t likely solve your problems.
If for example your loan had an adjustable interest rate, you will need to find another solution since that problem is long term in nature as well.
Several government programs exist under the Making Home Affordable® (MHA) program which was put into effect by the Obama Administration.
If you are not falling behind on your payments, but are suffering undue hardship in other areas of your life because of your mortgage, you may be able to get assistance through the Home Affordable Refinance Program® (HARP).
If however you are already behind or will be behind soon, the program which may assist you is the Home Affordable Modification Program® (HAMP). Another program exists which is specifically designed to help people suffering mortgage delinquency due to unemployment, called the Home Affordable Unemployment Program® (HUAP).
People who don’t qualify for any of these programs might try the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives® (HAFA) program.
Find out if you qualify for forbearance on your loan by contacting your lender if you deem that forbearance would be appropriate in your situation. If your problems are longer term in nature, inquire about one of the above programs.