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My HELOC Keeps Rejecting My Loan Modification Attempts

“Dear Steve,

I am writing regarding a 2nd (HELOC) on my Condo. When I lost my job in 2010 – I fell behind on my mortgage and HELOC – I went to then Countrywide and they said they would work with me but, didn’t – then when it was sold to B of A, the situation got worse.

I finally filed a compliant with the AG’s office in AZ and finally was able to get a mortgage modification – however, during this process which took more than a year – I found my HELOC had been sold to another firm.

I never received any notification regarding the status of the HELOC. Since receiving my modification in July of 2011 – I have been trying desperately to reach a modification with the firm holding the HELOC – not one of the proposals has been accepted – I’ve sent in financial data (I’m making a 1/3 of what I did when I purchased the home), I’ve responded to their requests – and all have come back with unaffordable re-payments…..

So, My question, what can I do to negotiate the HELOC to a modification? I was told that this would be easier than the first but, that’s not the case – should I seek legal advice?


Dear Mary,

Without knowing more about your balances I can only give you some general advice but I can point you in the right direction.

No problemIf your HELOC is above the value of your home you might want to consider a chapter 13 bankruptcy which would strip the lien from your property.

If the HELOC is not above the value of the property then you can use the free resources below to explore a resolution.

One point many are confused about is no lender is required to modify any mortgage they don’t want to.

If you do decide to pay for legal advice I would suggest you find a real estate attorney who is licensed in your state. And also understand there are lots of people out there who will lie to you to make the sale. You might want to become familiar with the FTC rules on Mortgage Assistance Relief Services before you pay anyone.

Thank you so much for contacting me.

Mortgage Help

Be sure to first read How Not to Get Scammed by a Mortgage Loan Modification Company.

Debt-to-Income Calculator

First you’ll need to determine your current debt-to-income ratio. The target debt-to-income ratio under the Home Affordable Modification program is 31%. Use this free online DTI calculator.

Mortgage Modification Calculator

The mortgage modification eligibility calculator will ask you several questions and then show you which programs you may be eligible for.

The free mortgage modification calculator can be found here.

Free Mortgage Modification Help and Counseling

If you have questions about the process or eligibility you can call 888-995-4673 and get connected with an mortgage modification adviser for free. This help is provided by government subsidized HUD Housing Counselors and they can be a big help in navigating the modification process.

In order to assist you, the housing expert will need to gather some information from you. Have the following documents handy:

  • Information about your first mortgage, such as your monthly mortgage statement.
  • Information about any second mortgage or home equity line of credit on the house.
  • Information about the monthly gross (before tax) income of all household members contributing to pay the mortgage, including recent pay stubs if you receive them or documentation of income you receive from other sources.
  • Information about your savings and other assets.
  • Account balances and minimum monthly payments due on all of your credit cards.
  • Account balances and monthly payments on all your other debts such as student loans and car loans.
  • Your most recent income tax return.
  • It may also be helpful to have: A letter describing any circumstances that caused your income to be reduced or expenses to be increased (job loss, divorce, illness, etc.), if applicable.

You can also get free help and housing counseling from a local HUD approved counselor. You can find your local free housing counselor, here.

Contact Your Mortgage Company

Not sure if your mortgage company offers modification programs? Not all do. You can contact your mortgage company to ask them about mortgage modification programs you might be eligible for. Click here to find your mortgage company.

NPV Calculator

Want to know the net present value (NPV) of your home for the mortgage modification process? No problem, use the free NPV calculator to find out. The NPV calculator is right here.

The calculator can be used by homeowners who have been denied a HAMP modification because of their NPV result or can also be used by homeowners prior to applying for a HAMP modification to help them better understand the NPV evaluation.

No Advance Fees

The Federal Trade Commission has a Mortgage Assistance Relief Services Rule which prohibits advance fees for mortgage rescue services or mortgage modification help.

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

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About Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode
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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