Christine's Bankruptcy Filing Personal Story

by Christine
(MA)

My bankruptcy filing personal story started with
a walk into my attorney's office in mid July of 2009 but like most bankruptcies my story started long before that.

I'll try to make this as short as possible... for personal reasons I closed the business I had in my home. I felt I wanted to simplify.
Having a business in your home has it's challenges just as any situation may have. I am a hair stylist by trade so I decided to rent space in another salon and change my former salon into an apartment that I could rent out for the same amount of money that I had been receiving in chair rentals.

Nice plan, I was looking for more privacy in my life, but I didn't think about small town politics and the hassle I went through in a previous construction.

When the dust settled and the town had led me through torturous planning board sessions and zoning meetings that had to be constantly
rescheduled due to vacationing board members (TO TURN MY HOUSE FROM COMMERCIAL TO RESIDENTIAL!!!) a whole year of NO rent went by.

By the time I recovered from that, the economy went south. Somewhere in all that I remortgaged. I thought the economy was just going through a little low time. I always made mortgage and I always handled my rather large load of debt easily. Many times I completely wiped it out and it would start again. (I own a colonial that is in need of constant work.

Any way it wasn't long before I wasn't handling that debt so well. I was increasingly in danger of not making mortgage, so in March of 2008 I stopped all credit card payments but one small account.

By bankruptcy time that was 16 months of not paying credit cards till I decided to file.

I mostly ignored the constant regular calls from the creditors at first to the bill collection agencies later. The calls I did take from the creditors in the beginning I was given wonderful opportunities to make some extreme minimal payments and they would have stopped all interest charges if I had started making payments again but the money just wasn't there.

I have to say I was surprised that none of the creditors had even initiated any court action against me.

Later when the bill collectors took over some tried to give the impression that they were lawyers but they weren't and one in particular let his frustration be known at me for not falling for his ruse!!

As the calendar turned to the year 2009 I started having increasing problems paying the mortgage. I was working 3 jobs but it never seemed to be enough. It started with 2 weeks late, for several months, then 3 weeks late then one month behind for a few months. Then in July my June payment was sent back to me and foreclosure warnings were given. I finally made the appointment to speak with an attorney.

I decided to surrender my house as I could not continue with those high payments as many can attest to the same situation. To this
date I am still in that house and have constant mixed feelings about it.
The bank is trying to make it work any way.(I have not paid a mortgage payment since May 2009 that was paid in June of that year.
The things I am surprised about being able to keep exempt are my time share property,both cars that are in my name and at that time I did not know that my IRA would not be considered.

I took my first counseling course about a week later and found it to be a good experience.
I learned some things. My filing date was Aug. 24, my 341 meeting (that's funny as it's the same
number of my street address) this was also informative.
There were several others there that were filing bankruptcy for the 2nd time!!! Life isn't always nice!!
Then took my 2nd educational course and receive my discharge in Dec. My bank didn't even
try to start any foreclosure process till April and it was a weak one at that.
They are trying to presently fit me into the Obama plan (making homes affordable) yet they
initiated that in April and I won't even find out if I qualify till Aug. And I hear that if
I don't qualify they may try to come up with some plan of their own.
Other people in my situation have been offered and given a mighty good deal.

Even if I do not fit into any of their plans the rest of the legal process to continue with
foreclosure and removing me from my property is lengthy.
I have not received the service members civil relief act which is to be delivered by way of
an attorney. That chews up 2 more months, if you HAVE an active duty military person in your house (which by the time they get to all of this may just be the case) may extend time to another year.

There is normally a final foreclosure date for sale which in this present economy may not even
produce a favorable action for the bank.

I was advised that even after foreclosure then the legal proceeding would be the same as an eviction.

In the case of a regular piece of property in a sluggish house market if one has to evict the
previous owner in order to acquire property in a foreclosure sale I would assume that is not a
very desirable situation yet my property also has possible commercial prospects to it but it is
on a very small piece of property.

I'll post more as the story goes on.

Press the read comment link for the continuing story!!

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May 10, 2011
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The continuing saga of Christine
by: Christine

I believe the beginning of my story ended in June or
July of 2010. It is now May of 2011 and I am still in my home without foreclosure proceedings even initiated. I had agreed to try the" making homes affordable" and that has given me the extra time I believe, yet my bank has given me the application twice now with a years span between the two.

Of course the economy and the illegal foreclosure mess of last year stalled things in my favor.

It seems foreclosure in a deteriorating economy is a game of cat and mouse. It appears like the bank is mostly testing to see what I know. Along with trying to determine if my income is better than it was.

They like to offer suggestions that help them, not so much myself yet who knows everyone has different objectives so possibly what they offer could be in my interest given a certain set of circumstances that rely on my NOT wanting to keep my house.

Those offers are a short sale where they waive the
deficiency in the sale (My bankruptcy discharge has already done that for me) OR a deed in lieu
of foreclosure which essentially you hand over your deed to them and I've been told that they arrange relocation money (about $3,000.00) in
this case. Again the deficiency waived.

What it does for them is speed up the time to resolve the issues they have on this property
and avoid the cost of foreclosure.

All it does for me is move me along with possibly
some extra change in my pocket and most likely some aggravation as I was told a short sale might
be part of the deal in a deed in lieu. Here I would be trying to get out of my house and be expected to be showing it to prospective buyers.

Foreclosure would still present problems as the sale would also bring people, but I would expect
another year of no mortgage payments, insurance
payments and property taxes.

Unless the bank can make another more attractive
offer, I expect to just let the foreclosure happen
as that will keep more money in my pocket.

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