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More and more homeowners are walking away from their homes and the mortgages attached to them. For many, the loss of a job prevents them from making their payments. For others, they may be able to manage (barely) the payment, but the house has declined in value to such a degree that they are "upside down" on their mortgage. (This means that they owe the mortgage company more money than the home is now worth.)

Foreclosure is serious and painful business. You may wish to consider alternatives. Short sales (the sale of a home for less than the mortgage balance with the mortgage company accepting the reduced payment as payment in full, or accepting an unsecured reduced balance note in addition to the purchase price) may be a good alternative for you. I spoke to Jeffrey Bortnick at Short Sale Legal Services (; Jeffrey tells me that short sales are becoming more common, but are very difficult to complete. This is a 50 state operation. If you are attempting to pursue a short sale, it is a good idea to hire professional legal counsel to assist. For a reasonable retainer, law firms like Short Sale Legal Services will handle the entire transaction for you, sometimes accepting a bank funded reduced fee, at closing. For short sale negotiations, nationwide, the Short Sale Legal Services site is a good site to remember.

Short sales and foreclosures take a heavy toll on your credit. You have been relieved of a significant financial burden, but an equally significant burden awaits you if you can no longer obtain credit. is an example of a law office that, like Short Sale Legal Services, operates in all 50 states. The law firm provides lawyer and paralegal assisted credit repair. There are many companies that provide these types of services, but I am not aware of many that provide lawyer assisted credit repair. There have been reports of credit repair scams since the economic crisis hit; what I like about Credit Fix Legal is that an attorney has put his/her law license or bar card on the face of a business. Thus, you are more likely to be treated fairly and professionally by a law firm specializing in this complicated arena.

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