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My Husband is Active Duty Military. We Can’t Live Together Because of the Mortgage. – Lisa

“Dear Steve,

My husband’s employer did drastic pay cuts in 2009. He left his job of 13 years and joined the Army. Our 1st duty station was Germany. We were able to rent our house out, but the renters left after the lease was up in Sept. Property management company couldn’t rent it out, we couldn’t afford the payment.

Mortgage company offered a modification but only if we were living in the home, so last Jan. my son and I left my husband and Germany to come back to live in it. We completed all paperwork, made all trial payments, signed modification docs and made the first payment, which was only $50.00 lower, on time.

They have never finished the mod, just keep telling me it’s still pending but that I should keep making payments. I am now refusing to make payments until they get the mod done. He is due to return to the states in June. I’m tired of living apart. No hope of selling the home, our area was hit hard by recession. I have now spent over a year trying to get the mod. I originally thought if I could get a lower payment we could continue to rent it out or even sell it as contract for deed.

In Sept. I received a letter from NationStar, our mortgage company, stating that, as long as my husband is active duty military, we are protected from foreclosure. Is this true? And if so, what should we do as he is planning to make this a career, and we will constantly relocate.

Do You Have a Question You'd Like Help With? Contact Debt Coach Damon Day. Click here to reach Damon.

Lisa”

Dear Lisa,

While the lender may not be able to foreclose while he is on active duty, that really doesn’t solve the underlying problem. You can read more about the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Civil Relief Act. It’s now actually called the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA).

It seems to make sense that if you are going to make the military a career and actually live together, that you might have to consider doing a short sale or letting the house go back to the lender and possibly follow that up with a bankruptcy to fully break your chains to the mortgage and any deficiency that might be due afterwards. That way you could put the house behind you and get your family back together.

See also  I'm Active Duty Assigned to a New Post With a House I Can't Sell. - Robert

Right now I hear you saying there are two things which are a priority to you. But which is more important? Do you want to move forward with your life or stay here and deal with the house issue?

Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.

Damon Day - Pro Debt Coach

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Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
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