As Homeowners already know, foreclosure is a legal process spanning 150-415+ days, by which a creditor (bank, mortgage company, etc..) takes ownership of a property to satisfy a debt (mortgage, second mortgage or home equity loan).

What Are the Timelines?

Foreclosure Process Timeline
1 16-30 45-60 90-105 150-415+
Borrower misses monthly payment.
Mortgage servicer assesses late fees & attempts to
contact owner, concerning missed payment.
Letter sent to homeowner stating they have breached terms of
mortgage due to continued non-payment.
Servicer refers loan to foreclosure department. Attorneys are
hired to initiate foreclosure proceedings.
House sold at sheriff’s sale and sheriff’s deed is filed at
Register of Deeds. In some States, Michigan Homeowners have 6 month period
of time redeem their property after the sheriff’s sale.

Types of Loans/Mortgages

Conventional, Rural Development, FHA – Federal Housing Administration, VA – Veterans Administration, MSHDA –  Michigan State Housing Development Authority, Option ARM Loans – Adjustable Rate Mortgage, Variable Interest Rate Loans, Fixed Interest Rate Loans, Balloon Payment Loans, and Interest Only

The type of loan or mortgage you have will determine the options available to you during the foreclosure process

   How Can Michigan Homeowners Keep their Homes?

Advancement of Claim:
On a conventional mortgage (insured with private mortgage insurance), the insurance company can advance the
money needed to cover the missed payments, sometimes without interest charges. You can defer the repayment of this advancement until after the mortgage has been paid off.

The lender increases the monthly payment amount (often 1 ½ original), so the homeowner will become
current with their payments, sometimes, in 12-18 months. Lenders will often require a large payment upfront before agreeing to this new payment schedule.

A lender may agree to change the terms of the mortgage to reduce the interest rate and/or extend the
term of the loan to lower your monthly payments.

Partial Claim:
Similar to an advancement of claim in a conventional mortgage, the mortgage servicer can make the
homeowner current with their payments by adding the amount past due to the loan as a “sleeping lien”, which the homeowner will repay once the current mortgage has been satisfied.

This lowers your monthly payment by changing the terms of your loan. The cost effectiveness of this
depends greatly on your payment history, equity, terms of your original mortgage, and the type of refinancing your choose. Many lenders do not inform borrowers of the additional, long-term costs that can be incurred from some methods of refinancing.

Repayment Plan:
If a homeowner experiences a period of financial trouble, a repayment plan may be scheduled to prevent foreclosure. This will schedule a future period of higher payments, to cover the payments missed.

                                                                       Tax Foreclosure

YEAR 0 1 2
STEP      A – B – C

A.  Homeowner fails to pay
property taxes. Delinquent tax
notices mailed to homeowners.

B. Property goes into Forfeiture. Fees and interest
are applied to the amount due. Notices of
forfeiture mailed to homeowners. This is the
beginning of the forfeiture process.

C. Final notice of delinquency delivered in person. Property goes into foreclosure on
the 31st of March in the second year of delinquency, following a circuit court
judgment, and the county takes legal ownership. The property and all structures
upon are slated for sale at public auction. There are no redemption options at this point.

                                                                  Foreclosure Scams

Offers involving a fee, membership, or subscription charge prior to service. (illegal in Michigan)
• Calls asking for you SS#
• Signing any contract by anyone other than a HUD or MSHDA approved organization/counselor
• Claims to immediately stop/end the foreclosure process.
• If you have been a victim of such a scam Call 877- FTC-HELP and file your complaint online at or call 1-877-765-8388

Do not deed your property to anyone offering you foreclosure assistance
• Do not make loan payments to anyone but your lender
• Do not pay money to a foreclosure counselor before receiving service
• Do not sign any documents from private companies without reading them or having them examined first
• Only speak to HUD or MSHDA certified counselors and confirm their certification.

                                                                     Financial Counseling 

You do not need to pay for adequate counseling or assistance.
There are many non-profit organizations in mid-Michigan, approved by the United States Department of Housing and Urban development (HUD) and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA), which provide counseling to the public free of charge.

                                                          Speak to Your Mortgage Servicer

If you become unable to make your monthly payments, immediately contact your mortgage servicer. Do not wait to receive past due notices.
• Be polite and explain why you are, currently, unable to make your payments.
• Respond to all communication from your mortgage service and try to cooperate with them.
• Inform them that you do not intend to default on your loan and are working to become current with your payments.

                                                                  Foreclosure Counseling

A foreclosure counselor will want to see: a complete copy of your primary mortgage and any secondary mortgage or home equity loan, proof of current income (pay stub, W-2 form, social security statement), and you current household budget (all expenses including billing statements).

-Ask the counselor to call your mortgage servicer with you after reviewing your situation.

    Mid-Michigan Resources

                                                                             CALL 211

– Center for Financial Health
2400 West Road
East Lansing, Michigan 48823

Franklin Street Community Housing Corporation
618 Seymour Street
Lansing, Michigan 48933

• Lansing Affordable Homes, Inc
6810 South Cedar Street
Suite #15
Lansing, Michigan 48911

           Legitimate Resources

U.S. Housing and Urban Development
(HUD) Interactive Voice Response
System: (800) 569-4287

For information on buying a home, renting,
loan default, foreclosure, credit issues,
fraud reporting, FHA loans, and a list of
HUD approved counselors

The Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA)
735 E. Michigan Ave
P.O. Box 30044
Lansing, Michigan 48909
(517) 373-8370

• Financial and technical assistance through public and private partnerships to create and preserve safe and decent affordable housing.

Tips For Avoiding Foreclosure

Don’t ignore the problem.
The further behind you become, the harder it will be to reinstate your loan and the more likely that you will lose your house.

Contact your lender as soon as you realize that you have a problem.
Lenders do not want your house. They have options to help borrowers through difficult financial times.

Open and respond to all mail from your lender.
The first notices you receive will offer good information about foreclosure prevention options that can help you weather financial problems. Later mail may include important notice of pending legal action. Your failure to open
the mail will not be an excuse in foreclosure court.

Know your mortgage rights.
Find your loan documents and read them so you know what your lender may do if you can’t make your payments. Learn about the foreclosure laws and timeframes by contacting the State Government Housing Office.

Understand foreclosure prevention options.
Valuable information about foreclosure prevention (also called loss mitigation) options can be found at

Contact a HUD-approved housing counselor.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funds free or very low cost housing counseling nationwide. Housing counselors can help you understand the law and your options, organize your finances and represent you in negotiations with your lender if you need this assistance. Find a HUD-approved housing
counselor near you or call (800) 569-4287.

Prioritize your spending.
After healthcare, keeping your house should be your first priority. Review your finances and see where you can cut spending in order to make your mortgage payment. Look for optional expenses-cable TV, memberships,
entertainment-that you can eliminate. Delay payments on credit cards and other “unsecured” debt until you have paid your mortgage.

Use your assets.
Do you have assets-a second car, jewelry, a whole life insurance policy-that you can sell for cash to help reinstate your loan? Can anyone in your household get an extra job to bring in additional income? Even if these efforts don’t significantly increase your available cash or your income, they demonstrate to your lender that
you are willing to make sacrifices to keep your home.

Avoid foreclosure prevention companies.
You don’t need to pay fees for foreclosure prevention help-use that money to pay the mortgage instead.
Many for-profit companies will contact you promising to negotiate with your lender. While these may be legitimate businesses, they will charge you a hefty fee (often two or three month’s mortgage payment) for information and
services your lender or a HUD approved housing counselor will provide free if you contact them.

Don’t lose your house to foreclosure recovery scams!
If any firm claims they can stop your foreclosure immediately if you sign a document appointing them to act on your behalf, you may well be signing over the title to your property and becoming a renter in your own home! Never sign a legal document without reading and understanding all the terms and getting professional advice from an attorney, a trusted real estate professional, or a HUD approved housing counselor.

– FBI studies have ranked Michigan #3 out of the top ten states affected by mortgage fraud since the subprime mortgage crisis began.

For the top ten cities affected by this fraud, Detroit was ranked #3 and Dearborn #10.

  How Identity Theft Can Cost You Your Home!

Individuals obtain a homeowner’s personal information through various means (dumpster diving, phone/mail scams, etc..)

• This information is used to obtain new forms of ID and use them to transfer ownership of the property for profit or take out a second mortgage (pocketing the money).

– The legal owners of the home are completely unaware of this proces, as it goes on behind the scenes.

– The FBI recommends homeowners, periodically, check the status of their property with their local register of deeds.

Property Reporting System

The Ingham County Register of Deeds is developing a Property Reporting system that will notify registered users (via email) of any new activity involving their property.

This will allow you to track activity concerning your property and notify you of any tax or construction liens filed against you. Property owners will have to sign up for this free service at

Home owners should wake up TODAY! before it’s too late by mustering enough courage for “Pro Se” Litigation (Self Representation – Do it Yourself) against the Lender for Mortgage Fraud and other State and Federal law violations using foreclosure defense package found at “Pro Se” litigation will allow Homeowners to preserved their home equity, saves Attorneys fees by doing it “Pro Se” and pursuing a litigation for Mortgage Fraud, Quiet Title and Slander of Title; amongst other causes of action. This option allow the homeowner to stay in their home for 3-5 years for FREE without making a red cent in mortgage payment, until the “Pretender Lender” loses a fortune in litigation costs to high priced Attorneys which will force the “Pretender Lender” to early settlement in order to modify the loan; reducing principal and interest in order to arrive at a decent figure of the monthly amount the struggling homeowner could afford to pay.

If you find yourself in an unfortunate situation of losing or about to lose your home to wrongful fraudulent foreclosure, and need a complete package that will show you step-by-step litigation solutions helping you challenge these fraudsters and ultimately saving your home from foreclosure either through loan modification or “Pro Se” litigation visit: