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Neg Equity, Home Owner in Minneapolis, MN

House for 14 years, divorced 2 years. My ex is on the mortgage with me. I got a hma refi, problem is 250K, 170 value, house mine in divorce.

Asked by Neg Equity, Minneapolis, MN Sat Mar 31, 2012

I want him to take the house and I want to start over, if possible, but I don't think he can refinance. With my income, it is not smart to have that much debt, I am trying to start over and have reasonable expenses. I have 3.5 more years on my good interest rate. The HMA is based on my income. I hate having this much debt! Does he maintain ownership if he is on the mortgage but I own the house in the divorce? With my income, I can't refi, or did I with the HMA? They won't take him off, but I signed the refi and filled out paperwork with just me for info.

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Oh, Neg, I feel for your situation. Divorce is always painful and doubly hard when there are children involved (been there).

I think you have described a couple of different issues here. It might be most helpful for you to sort those things out:
1. Your house is upside down in value.
2. You aren't sure if you and your husband still own the property together.
3. Your ex is making all of this more difficult by confusing your children.

The last one has to be the worst. It's almost impossible to explain difficult things to children anyway, and this issue is doubly painful since you lived there as a family.

You have alot to sort out, but I would start by identifying what's really going on and deciding what things are worth fighting for and what battles you can't win. I wonder if your ex would EVER be willing to back off no matter HOW much evidence you give him to support your claim.

As for being upside down, unless you have a legitimate financial hardship, chances are the bank might not approve a short sale and/ or may hold you liable for any amount of money you're short, meaning the amount you owe the bank vs. how much the house would sell for. Make sense?

Good luck to you. I'd still consult an attorney, especially one who specializes in short sales!!!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Apr 1, 2012
I filled out the paperwork for the Home Made Affordable Program, and sent in my divorce decree and my income statements. The terms were modified, not really a refi, so him name remains on both the first and second, and also on the third we took out several years ago, a $40,000 loan to do some work like fix the leaking roof, take out lead, etc, with a city program, that money doesn't come due until we sell.
If the modification was based on my income, they just want him still on in case I default, which I am not planning on. But with him telling the kids for the last two years I "took" the house, and it is his also, I am more than ready to move on! Plus, I feel the $70K in negative equity is a burden, he has taken me to court several times to try to reduce child support, I have court fees from that, I want to severe all the ties I can. If it means leaving the house to get rid of a joint liability, so be it. Since I will be getting more income soon, and I have great credit, any chance of getting rid of the mortgage in both our names? I can't refi, it is too far in the ground, I am assuming he can't either!
I don't know if there is an answer, honestly. Sometimes I feel a little jingle mail might be in order, but I do like my house, just hate the joint property ownership. I do tell the kids that the judge gave it to me so we could live there, and it is mine, but their dad tells them it is still his! Confusing for them.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 31, 2012
I am surprised that you refinanced on your own income and credit, but your ex husband's name was not removed. Refinancing is one way couples who are splitting up handle the property in a divorce: the refi takes place, a new deed and mortgage are filed, with the name of the party refinancing taking over, and the other party no longer on the mortgage. I did this myself with a property I owned jointly with another person. He became the fee owner and responsible for the new mortgage in his name only. If this is the case, you would be able to sell the property without permission of the ex spouse. If not, you would need his permission. I would suggest you call the Real Esate section of the Attorney General's office and get some information. Before you call, have your mortgage papers on hand and be sure you can explain your mortgage refinance and what program was used. I, too wondered if you meant HAMP? Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 31, 2012
Dear Neg Equity, Great question this an area where there can be lots of confusion with terms, outcomes and the correct path to take to get you in a good place. I would suggest a discussion with and experienced distressed property real estate agent and / or a Real estate attorney. Having the right information up front will help you out the most. Contact me for more information or a credible resource.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 31, 2012
Hi, Neg!
Not sure what an HMA is. Do you mean HAMP? That means Home Affordable Modification Program. If so, then, yes, you have already refinanced. I'm a little confused about why his name is still on the mortgage if this modification was just using your financial information. Technically, the modification is just "modifying" the terms of your current loan which may explain why he's on there in name only and why they only needed your financial info to execute the modification.

You have a somewhat confusing situation with the divorce decree stating you get the property. Other than his name being on the mortgage, he doesn't seem to have much claim to the property at all. However, because his name is on the mortgage, if it went in to default and ultimate foreclosure, it would affect his credit and yours.

I would consult an attorney to see what your options are. Many times, attorneys will provide you with consultation time at little to no cost. Good luck and keep us posted on how this turns out for you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 31, 2012
Dear Neg Equity,

This is a difficult situation that does not have a once-size-fits-all solution. I suggest meeting with a professional Realtor and a Real Estate attorney to go over options available. First meeting is a no cost consultation with the attorney.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 31, 2012
complicated situation and questions. Would need more detailed information from you to provide solid answers. Contact me if you want to discuss your options in more depth.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 31, 2012
Dear Tonya, I will call you on Monday! Thanks.
Flag Sat Mar 31, 2012
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