Like Carmen wrote on Wednesday right here in the blog, there is a silver lining in this financial crisis. We, as Americans, are already starting to build a new foundation based on good money habits. You can see it in retail sales, which show that we’re dialing down the spending; credit card numbers, which show we’re putting away the plastic; and poll after poll shows we’re making the pledge to save more.
The cornerstone of this new foundation will be our homes – the roof over our heads. But many of us are still stuck underwater and upside down in our mortgages, and will need help before they can think of their own silver lining.
On Thursday’s show, Carmen brought on Secretary Steve Preston of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, who urged struggling homeowners, new and old, to seek out the information they need to keep them in their homes.
Preston’s bottom line is this: Remember that your lender doesn’t want your home. They aren’t rooting for you to foreclose. If they can keep you in your home, it’s better for them too. So reach out as soon as you are facing difficulty. Go to a HUD counselor. Send a letter of hardship if you have to. There’s help out there if you know where to look.