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Cook County foreclosure defense attorneyDue to financial issues that have affected many people during the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government has implemented a moratorium on foreclosures, which is meant to ensure that families can continue living in their homes during this public health emergency. While the moratorium has been extended multiple times, it is currently set to expire on June 30, 2021. This means that those who have been unable to make mortgage payments may face the loss of their homes. Some lenders have stated that they will resume foreclosures as soon as the moratorium ends, while others may wait to proceed with foreclosures until the end of 2021. Homeowners who are facing foreclosure will want to understand their options and determine whether they can work with their lender to create new payment options or whether they will need to find new living arrangements. 

Options for Homeowners Facing Foreclosure

To prevent foreclosure, those who have been unable to make mortgage payments will need to determine how they can become current on past-due payments, and they will also need to make sure they will be able to make ongoing mortgage payments. Homeowners may be able to work with lenders to address these issues, and available options may include:

  • Forbearance - Those who have been unable to make mortgage payments may qualify for relief in which they will not be required to make payments for a certain period of time, or the amount of payments may be temporarily reduced. While missed payments will need to be made up, homeowners will generally not be required to pay a lump sum at the end of the forbearance period. Instead, missed payments may be added on to the end of the loan, or the amount of payments may be increased temporarily. Homeowners who received a forbearance before June 30, 2020 may request up to two extensions of three months each, but the maximum period for forbearance is 18 months.

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Cook County real estate attorney short sale

No matter how careful you are about managing your money, unexpected financial difficulties can arise that may cause you to be unable to pay your bills and cover your ongoing expenses. Currently, many people throughout the United States are struggling with financial issues due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Those who have lost their jobs or who have faced additional expenses related to an illness may have trouble making mortgage payments, and defaulting on a mortgage may lead a lender to begin foreclosure proceedings. While the federal government has placed a moratorium on foreclosures for the time being, if you are unable to become current on your mortgage payments by the end of this moratorium, you may face the loss of your home. If you are unable to prevent foreclosure, you may be able to complete a short sale that will allow you to avoid owing additional money to your mortgage lender.

What Is a Short Sale?

In a short sale, you will sell your home for less than the total amount that is owed on your mortgage. This can be a good option if your home is “underwater,” meaning that you owe more money on the mortgage than the home is actually worth. Typically, your mortgage lender will need to approve a short sale, and they may do so if you can show that it will be more financially beneficial for them to allow this type of sale rather than pursuing foreclosure proceedings. 

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Cook County real estate attorney home closing

The coronavirus pandemic has impacted the lives of everyone in the United States in a variety of ways. Those who have been lucky enough to avoid getting sick or losing their job are still likely to feel the effects of COVID-19, both in their daily lives and their plans for the future. If you are considering buying or selling a home in Illinois, you will need to be aware of certain issues that may affect you, and you will want to take the right steps to protect yourself and make sure you can complete your transaction successfully.

Legal, Financial, and Other Issues Affecting Real Estate Transactions

One of the first things that home buyers and sellers need to be aware of right now is that they may need to take steps to protect the safety of themselves and others and avoid the risks of contracting or spreading infections. Social distancing concerns have led to restrictions on in-person visits to a home, and in many cases, buyers may be limited to virtual visits or video tours conducted by a real estate agent. Buyers may also be unable to be present for home inspections or appraisals, and they will need to rely on professionals to ensure that any defects are identified and addressed properly.

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Cook County real esate attorney lease modification

The ongoing COVID-19 crisis has affected many individuals, families, and businesses, and it has caused financial struggles for both landlords and tenants. Some residential tenants have experienced job losses, and many businesses have been required to close or scale back their operations. When residential or commercial tenants are unable to pay rent, this can put landlords in a difficult position, since they may be unable to meet their own financial obligations. 

Typically, landlords are able to pursue evictions when tenants do not meet their rent requirements or otherwise violate the terms of a lease. However, the state of Illinois has placed a moratorium on evictions, and this prohibition has been repeatedly extended as the pandemic continues to affect people throughout the state. Most recently, Governor J.B. Pritzker issued an executive order extending this moratorium through January 9, 2021, and additional extensions may be made if they are determined to be necessary. For landlords who are currently unable to evict tenants who have not paid rent, other options may be available, including making lease modifications that can provide protections and benefits for both landlords and tenants.

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