I've divorced, home awarded to my husband. I am still on the home loan, now he's missed 3 mort. payments - what can I do to save my credit?

Asked by Mcgina1, 85086 Mon Jan 9, 2012

Ex-husband cannot refinance, no equity in the home and income does not qualify for refi with BofA.

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Jacqueline R…, Agent, Anthem, AZ
Tue Jan 10, 2012
This is a difficult question to answer as the possibilities can be many.
I would need a few answers to additional questions to be able to recommend the best options.
Are you still in amiable relationship with your ex-husband? If so, have you mentioned that he should explore his options as well as your concerns? If he wants to stay in the home he may have an option to modify the loan, and if that were a possibility you could possibly be removed from the loan, in that scenario he could stay in the home which might solve the problems and keep everyone very happy.
IF he doesn't want to stay, maybe you could move in and modify the loan and stay, if neither of those scenarios are of interest then the next thing to review would be a short sale, there are many consideration in completing a short sale and you truly need to research any tax or legal consequences that may be applicable. The Arizona Association of Realtors created a great document which is a seller short sale advisory and has links to many of the important factors, I would be happy to provide one for you if you wish, of course a CPA and Lawyer can be of great assistance regarding those two categories.
If a short sale is a good option then the first one to consider would be a HAFA program which can allow for relocation assistance to the occupant, maybe that is what would help your husband to consider addressing the problem.
Worst case; I have seen where a husband was awarded a home, the wife is still listed as a party to the loan, she was able to repair her credit within a reasonable time frame with much effort, documentation and consultation with the appropriate parties.
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Randy Hooker, Agent, Chandler, AZ
Mon Jan 9, 2012
Honestly, "saving" your credit is probably going to be an impossibility. If your name is on the mortgage loan, and "he" is already 3 payments behind, then the credit bureaus will look at it like you too are 3 payments behind. If you can pull off a short sale, and the odds are stacked against you, then your credit will be damaged. If he lets the property be foreclosed, then your credit will be damaged. I'm sorry, but I can't personally see any way you can avoid being credit damaged -- and yet, I'm not an attorney or a CPA, and this is not legal advice. So as others have already said, you would be well advised to consult with a competent attorney.

On a side note, I personally think divorce judges should be hung out to dry for approving an arrangement like you got. With your name off the title to the house, you have absolutely no say-so whatsoever in the disposition of the property. And yet with your name on the mortgage loan, your credit will always be at risk, based on whatever your ex-husband does - with no say-so or power whatsoever. I'm just sorry you didn't have legal counsel before that happened.

Best of luck to you!
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Lucinda Tkach, Agent, Scottsdale, AZ
Mon Jan 9, 2012

You need to seek legal advice and a CPA. A short sale could be the best option if he will cooperate, and then you could purchase again in 3 years as long as all other credit is managed well.

Feel free to contact me for guidance in the process.

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Loren Hoboy, Agent, Phoenix, AZ
Mon Jan 9, 2012
Then you and your ex-probably should have sold (short sale) the property pursuant to a divorce court order. Talk to a real estate lawyer and your divorce lawyer to see what can be done. You can probably do a cooperative short sale with your ex even now. Alternatively, if you do nothing you are headed for foreclosure. Both will impact your credit, but the Short Sale is less painful. Depending on yours and your exs finances, whether you have a second loan on the house and what the money was used for, you may even need to explore Bankruptcy. Seek legal advice and select a knowledgeable realtor experienced with divorce situations. Call if you need some names.
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