My husband passed away and left the house to me in his will…

March 30th, 2009 by Jarad

Question: My husband passed away and left the house to me in his will, although I am nowhere on the loan or title. I was out of work and taking care of him for a year before he died, so I got behind on the mortgage following his death in May 2008. I have been trying since August of 2008 to work with the lender(Chase)to modify the loan and have since remarried and now able to make regular payments again. I only owe $74,000 on a house worth approx. $170,000, but am having a terrible time getting any response from Chase. I have worked with Hope Now and am supposedly being reviewed by Chase for a modification. I am terrified because a sale date has been set, and my husband and I only have fair credit scores, yet have a great L-to-V ratio and income (he is a retired officer, 100%disabled USAF)but can find NO ONE willing to refinance us. There has to be an answer to this – it’s a true hardship situation since it stemmed from my husbands death last year, but I don’t know where to find help. I’ve called everywhere I know!!! Please suggest help – I’m afraid to wait much longer or they may foreclose before I find help. Thank You!!

Answer: -Even with the auction date set, you still have some options…especially if there is equity in the home. At this point, time is your biggest enemy and since the auction date has been set you have no time to play around. Unfortunately, since your credit is not spectacular, it may be difficult at this point to refinance, especially if you can’t back it up with income. As for loan modifications, it’s definitely a great option, but you should have a back up plan also. Maybe your new husband is in a position to buy the property? Maybe you have close family members that would but it, just temporarily until you could buy it back from them. Whatever you do, don’t lose it to the bank because you’ll lose most of your equity if not all of it because the opening bid is only what you owe plus some fees. If someone bids more than that amount, that money goes right to you.

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