Bank Sells House Out From Under Family: Could This Be You?

foreclosureA couple who thought they'd worked out lower payments with their mortgage company lost their house anyway.

The bank sold it -- right out from under them.

Mike and Ellen Kahara say Wells Fargo had just notified them that they weren't going to be eligible for a loan modification program after all when they got the news of the sale. 

Literally just notified -- by a week.


The couple told the LA Times they thought they were doing the right thing by reaching out for the loan modification.

And the speed with which the house was sold -- literally a week after they were denied -- makes it sound like no one was going to work with the Kaharas.

And the bank is seemingly within its rights to do whatever they want here.

But with the Obama stimulus program has come hope for other homeowners via the Home Affordable Modification Program, which can extend a mortgage by as much as 40 years to give homeowners time to pay it off.

So how do you keep this from happening to you when you try to modify your home loan?

  • Read the fine print -- The original mortgage came with clauses that could allow them to take your home pretty quickly, so be aware of your time frame and what the bank can and can't do.
  • Stick with the same lender -- If they know they'll continue to get money out of you, they are more willing to work with you. The fees will also likely be less.
  • Check for closing costs -- If you're struggling right now to make your payments, can you afford them? You might come out better in the end, but remember you can't rob Peter to pay Paul.
  • Talk to a HUD-Approved Counselor -- The service is free, and they can help you jump through the hoops.

Are you eligible for a home loan modification?


Image via respres/Flickr

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