Lose a Job; Keep Your Home


by Roberta Murphy

Carlsbad, CA–These are tough economic times, even in sunny San Diego. With unemployment running at 9 percent here, many fear not only the loss of their jobs, but the loss of their San Diego homes as well.

So what’s a homeowner to do when facing unemployment?

Besides filing for unemployment, checking 401(k) balances,  securing health insurance coverage and polishing the resume and LinkedIn profile, the newly-unemployed homeowner should also assess outstanding debt–including the mortgage. This is not the time to slack off on payments; rather, every step should be taken to keep payments current.  Don’t bury your head in the sand. Instead:

1. Pick up the phone and call your credit and bank card companies. Advise them of your situation and try to negotiate for a lower interest rate as well as lower payments.  Increasingly, these creditors are more willing to negotiate terms.

2. If you have a mortgage on your San Diego real estate, call your mortgage lender(s) and inquire about mortgage loan modification. You may be able to not only reduce your interest rate, but possibly reduce the principal balance on your mortgage as well. Be persistent–and patient, as you sit on hold for what seems like an eternity. And before even thinking of forking over money to a loan modification company, visit HomeFreeUSA where you can receive mortgage loan modification assistance for free.

3. If you think you may need to leave the area for employment elsewhere, consider calling a reputable San Diego Realtor immediately. He or she will be able to advise how to sell your home quickly and at the highest price–but will be able to market it to the broadest buying market possible.

When or if unemployment hits, fear will be the worst enemy, More than ever, this will be the time to be alert to alternative career possibilities, assertive in seeking financial solutions and aware of the life’s potential ahead.