If you applied for a loan modification and have not heard from the bank after a couple of months, you’d tend to get a little nervous and perhaps even annoyed. With this in mind, many homeowners ask us, “When will the bank advise me as to whether I am going to get a modification or not?” and “What should I do while I’m waiting?.”

How long does a loan modification take?

The loan modification process typically takes six (6) months to nine (9) months depending mostly on your bank and your ability to efficiently work through the process with your attorney. Of course, the loan modification timeline is not set in stone and the more complex your situation or the greater the degree of concessions needed from the investor, the longer the process takes.

A lawyer can often reduce the amount of time required by processing your paperwork efficiently, presenting your application in the way the lender wants it, and knowing from past experience what the lender is able and typically willing to agree to. Although each borrower’s situation is unique, knowing the measures the lender is willing to take for similarly situated borrowers can be very helpful.

Whether you are dealing directly with your lender or through an attorney, ask several questions up front:

1.         How long is the process likely to take? Find out the best- and worst-case scenarios and then count out the days and mark them on your calendar.

2.        When can I expect to hear something about my case? Mark this date on your calendar.

3.         If I don’t hear anything by the specified date, whom should I contact? Get the person’s name, employee identification number (if available), phone number, and any extension you need to dial to reach the person directly.

4.         What should I do while I’m waiting?

In addition, you can continue to make progress on your own by doing the following:

If you hired a lawyer to represent you, do not speak with your bank or bank’s representative. Refer all matters to your lawyer who is representing you. Anything you say to the bank could confuse things or compromise your lawyer’s ability to negotiate the best deal on your behalf.

Don’t be surprised if you continue to receive delinquency notices or late payment phone calls. Banks rarely put a stop on the foreclosure process until a workout solution is fully in place. You should ask your bank if your attempts to negotiate a solution will stop or at least postpone other collection actions. If they do not, you should find out what that means for you.

When your fate is in someone else’s hands, six (6) to nine (9) months can seem like an eternity. By doing your part to keep the process on track and remain informed, you not only improve your chances of achieving a positive outcome, but you can also reduce the stress that commonly accompanies the waiting process.

Ray Garcia, Esq.

Board Certified in Real Estate Law

by the Florida Bar

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Law Office of Ray Garcia, P.A.

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