A “mortgage foreclosure attorney near me.”
That’s what you searched for once you received the foreclosure notice.
It happens to everyone. Maybe you got sick, or lost your job. Or had an unexpected expense like a car repair or a roof repair. Or a family member passed away.
When the bills pile up, or the income goes down, it can be hard to cover your day to day living expenses and the mortgage payment.
That’s when you look for help. Professionals in this area are called a variety of things:
- Mortgage attorneys
- Real estate lawyers
- Property lawyers
- Foreclosure defense attorneys
What can a mortgage foreclosure lawyer do for you?
A mortgage foreclosure lawyer can:
- Help you understand the government programs that may assist you with foreclosure prevention
- Counsel you about your situation to determine whether the loan modification process can help you keep your home and stop foreclosure
- Counsel you about other types of loss mitigation options that may help you stop foreclosure
- Help you understand how foreclosure laws may protect you
- Help you understand whether bankruptcy is the right option to help you stop foreclosure
- Help you understand whether you are facing a judicial foreclosure or a non-judicial foreclosure.
- Help you understand the timeline of your foreclosure process and how much time you have
- Help you build a tailored plan for your particular situation
Do I need to find a mortgage foreclosure lawyer near me?
The short answer to this question is: yes and no.
It’s important to retain a mortgage lawyer in the state where you live in order to get the best representation because foreclosure laws are dictated by the state in which you live.
There are some lawyers who are licensed to practice in multiple states but sometimes, the type of representation you get with an out of state lawyer will be less tailored to your specific goals and needs.
A mortgage foreclosure lawyer in your state will:
- Understand the state-specific foreclosure protections that may apply to your situation (like foreclosure mediation!)
- Understand the market issues impacting your home’s equity and selling conditions (this is particularly important if you want to try and sell your home as a last resort option to avoid foreclosure)
- Understand your particular state’s type of foreclosure and the foreclosure timelines at play (some states have judicial foreclosures and others have non-judicial foreclosures and some states have both)
- Being in the same time zone as you. Communication is a huge part of effective foreclosure defense representation. Being able to get in touch with your attorney is a big part of feeling like you hired the right party.
While you should retain a mortgage foreclosure lawyer that is in your state, they do not necessarily have to be in your town
Since state laws are the same regardless of the city or town you live in, it works fine to retain a mortgage lawyer that is in your state, but not specifically in your town.
It can feel weird to hire a lawyer that doesn’t live in the same city as you but for purposes of loss mitigation, it doesn’t matter.
I work with most clients now almost exclusively remotely.
We use email, fax, phone, Zoom and Skype to communicate. If there ends up being an in-person Mediation session, I drive to the session (of course) but most of these sessions are now being held remotely via Zoom and will continue to stay this way.
Loss Mitigation reviews (for loan modifications or short sales etc.) often happen in the same manner, no matter what state you live in
90% of all mortgages are backed by a government investor (Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, FHA, VA or USDA). These guidelines are the same across the country and do not change depending on what state you live in.
So, while states govern the actual foreclosure process, what will happen in your loss mitigation review, what you qualify for, and what your mortgage servicer can offer you is determined by the investor on your mortgage not your individual state’s laws.
For example, a Fannie Mae mortgage worked by Mr. Cooper in Oklahoma will have the same guidelines governing a loan modification review as a Fannie Mae mortgage worked by Mr. Cooper in Washington.
So, if your goal is to apply for a loan modification, short sale, deed in lieu or some other type of loss mitigation review – if your attorney is in your state but not necessarily in your town, it’s okay.
I work with homeowners all over Washington state
Here is a list of cities where I have had clients:
Eastern Washington cities: Spokane, Yakima, Kennewick, Pasco, Richland, Wenatchee, Walla Walla, Dayton, Cheney, Moses Lake, and more.
Western Washington cities: Seattle, Tacoma, Vancouver, Kent, Everett, Renton, Federal Way, Auburn, Lakewood, Longview, Castle Rock, Aberdeen, and more.
Kelly thought she needed a “mortgage foreclosure attorney near me” but she ended up working with me from Spokane, WA
Kelly had gotten approved for a loan modification on her own. As part of her approval, the lender put her on a trial payment plan, where she needed to make three month’s worth of mortgage payments before they would finalize the agreement.
After her 2nd month, her mortgage lender (PHH Mortgage) service-released the loan to Select Portfolio Servicing (SPS). PHH sent the service release letter so late that Kelly didn’t know her loan had been sold and she sent her 3rd payment to the wrong place (she sent it to PHH when it should have gone to SPS).
She retained me to help get her back on track with her trial payment plan. We were able to get the payment sent from PHH to the new servicer and successfully applied to the trial payment plan so she did not default out of her modification approval.
She finished her modification with SPS and got her home out of foreclosure.
We worked together using fax, phone, and email communication.
Here are some questions to help you determine whether you need a “mortgage foreclosure lawyer near you”
- Can I find a lawyer in my state familiar with state foreclosure procedures?
- Am I able to communicate remotely with my lawyer via fax, phone and email?
- Is the person I’m talking to actually licensed and located in my state somewhere?
Answering these questions will help you hire the right person.
There are many companies offering to “help” homeowners in foreclosure who are actually scamming people.
One sign that you may be talking to a company that does not actually have your best interests in mind is that they may be located in a different state. This isn’t always the case but it’s something to be aware of.
If you are a homeowner in Washington state and are looking for a foreclosure attorney near you, feel free to give me a call at (425) 654-1674.