Do not think that the answer to any mortgage problem you may have is to simply to stop paying.
You entered into a legal contract.
It is enforceable and you could very well find your ass out on the street if you choose to do what I did.
It's a dangerous game that I don't encourage anyone to play.
I'm simply telling you my story, not giving you an guideline how to skip out on your legal and ethical responsibility.
That being said, I got damn lucky when I decided to stop paying my mortgage.
And when I say lucky, I had a few things that created a perfect storm---or a perfect nightmare from my mortgage holder/servicer's view---that made foreclosure even more difficult.
1. After filing the initial paperwork, the foreclosure process typically takes anywhere from a year and a half to two years until the Sheriff shows up at your door to successfully evict you in Cook County, Illinois.
2. The value of my home had dropped severely. In my particular case in excess of $100,000.
3. These two facts led to me hypothesize that it would cost my mortgage holder far more than the value of my home in filing and legal fees to foreclose on me than the property was worth.
4. Mortgage companies largely don't want to be true property owners. If they foreclosed upon me, they'd be responsible for the assessments and taxes. Another expense that will put a cramp in any companies' bottom line.
Like I said, with the exception of known facts (my property value and the amount of time it takes a foreclosure to wind it's way through the courts in Cook County) the rest is a hypothesis. But as hypothesis goes, I'm pretty sure I've hit this one on the head.
So when I didn't see any court filings in June, you could of knocked me over with a feather.
It really bothered me not to pay my mortgage.
Aside from the fact what it has done to my credit, it just wasn't right. I made a deal, I have to stick to it.
When people walk away from their homes because they're underwater, I have a problem with that.
If the home gained value the owner wouldn't beg for their mortgage to go up or give the bank the profits. In a normal economy why would you get to walk away from your commitment.
Yet as we all know, we haven't had a normal economy for quite a while. I don't care if "they" say the recession is "over."
So the combination of drastically lower property values and the foreclosure crisis saved my ass.
I got lucky, but everyone's luck tends to run out.
I wanted to stay ahead of the curve and had to figure out a way to do so.
Then a few more angels stepped in.
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