The Delaware State Housing Authority and the Delaware Attorney General’s Office partners up periodically to co-sponsor informational workshops on home foreclosure for families. Free to any family in Delaware, these workshops present information and resources that are useful to anyone experiencing the reality and/or possibility of home foreclosure.  Anas Ben Addi, director of the Delaware State Housing Authority, says, “Helping families keep their homes is one of the best things we can do to strengthen our community.”

The most recent foreclosure workshops in Delaware happened in Dover on May 15 – 16 but here is information available to any Delaware resident at any time.  (Such information is available on a state-by-state basis by going online to your respective State Housing Authority.)

In Delaware, this joint partnership was created in 2012 from proceeds of the National Mortgage Foreclosure Settlement between the federal government, states and five of the nation’s largest mortgage serving banks.  This DSHA and DAG partnership focuses on

  1. emergency housing assistance programs
  2. housing counseling – foreclosure prevention, credit/budget/debt management
  3. educational outreach – workshops, informational brochures/packages
  4. mortgage mediation program – involves you, mediator, lender, counselor
  5. mortgage fraud investigation and prosecution
  6. list of agencies that provide such services & programs.

The very most important thing to know about foreclosure is the sooner the homeowner addresses the problem and seeks help, the better the chances are that the homeowner can save his/her home!!!

Here is a list of things to share with any prospects facing foreclosure:

  1. Do not avoid the problem.
  2. Contact your lender as soon as you realize you have a problem.
  3. Open and respond to ALL mail from your lender.  Do NOT throw it out.  First notices will have information about foreclosure prevention options you may have.  Later notices may include information about pending legal action.  Failure to open mail from your lender is NOT an excuse.
  4. Know your mortgage rights.  Find ALL of you loan documents.  Learn about laws and timeframes in your state.  (In Delaware, you have 9 months to act after missing a mortgage payment to avoid losing your home.)  Talk with the lender’s Loss Mitigation Department.  Ask if you can get a loan modification or participate in a “work out” resolution.  Take action immediately.  Continue to live in your home…if you move out, you may not qualify for assistance.  If you get a foreclosure notice from your lender, you have 28 days to respond in writing.
  5. Do not sign any document you don’t understand.
  6. Contact n HUD (Housing of Urban Development) counselor.
  7. Beware of and avoid any foreclosure scams.  Do not take cash for your house from anyone.  Do not sign your deed/title over to anyone.  Do not sign anything relating to your house unless it is prepared and signed by your lender.
  8. The foreclosure process takes anywhere from 6-12 months until a confirmation of sale is filed with the court.

For more information, visit delawarehomeownerrelief.com or attorneygeneral.delaware.gov; email consumer.protection@state.de.us; or call the Delaware Homeowner Relief Hotline at 800-220-5425 or the Attorney General’s Foreclosure Prevention office at 302-577-8393 or 302-577-8378.