Ed and Brenda Bullock are homeowners in Milwaukee that have experienced the worst of our current mortgage crisis.
After about a year of hard work trying to seek solutions to their mortgage struggles, and also obtaining a modification service that promises a fixed rate for a certain fee, the couple has finally succeeded in saving their home that they love dearly. They say their success came through the new Milwaukee Foreclosure Mediation Program.
With more than 5,800 foreclosure filings in 2009 and about 1,711 homes actually sold at foreclosure auction, Mayor Tom Barrett and other city officials took it upon themselves to figure out a way to help stop the foreclosure crisis and secure the future of their city.
The new Milwaukee Foreclosure Mediation program is just one of many ways the city and other individuals are using to manage the mortgage crisis, said Suzanne Dennik.
In September the program came into play after it had received approval from the court, and is operated through Marquette University which also holds the dispute resolution program. The mediation process is aimed to bring both the homeowner and the mortgage servicer face-to-face to try and work out an affordable solution, said Maria Prioletta, special projects manager for the Department of City Development.
Before the homeowner is to sit down face-to-face with their lender they will be required to contact a housing counseling agency that is going to review the borrowers finances. This will be required so the agency can have a clear picture of the homeowners financial situation and will help them decide what they can afford to pay on their mortgage and other various options.
The information that the housing agency collected will be sent to the lender before mediation and a date for the meeting will be set up at the Milwaukee County Courthouse. From there the lender will decide whether or not the borrower qualifies for any type of modification, or if they simply cannot afford the home.
This program helped the Bullocks after one day Ed was searching the internet for ways to prevent foreclosure and accidentally landed on Marquette’s web site where he learned about the mediation process. The couple decided to go this route and have recently entered the three month trial period at a payment $400 lower than the original monthly payment. At the end of February there case is to be reviewed once again for a permanent solution.