The Bank repossessed it and sold it at auction.
But long story short… I worked hard and got a new home. It doesn’t end at foreclosure!
Here’s the short version…
I have a beautiful wife and 2 girls.
I live in Denver, CO.
I bought a house in 2007.
I lost my job in 2009.
Lost the house in 2010.
Didn’t give up.
Got a new job in 2011– full-time.
Rebuilt my credit
2015, I bought a new house.
Do you want to know where I am today in 2020?
However– more important.
Want to know what I learned and how it will help you this time around?
This is my story of how I lost my house to foreclosure in 2010.
It sucked bad. Real Bad.
However, I want to share it with you and 3 critical lessons I learned.
Now (2020 – with corona and all the uncertainty) – I’m nervous, but I know this time around my family, and I will stay safe in our house – and I tell you why.
My name is James,
I’m 43 years old. I work as an electrician, and I live here in Denver, CO.
In 2005-2006 we wanted to buy a house. Everyone was telling us we had to. House prices were going up. We all thought it was the best way to secure our future.
At the time, we wanted to buy a house because we wanted to expand our family when our daughter was only 2 years old. We did want to have another kid.
We were looking for that American dream, I guess…
You know, a white picket fence 2.3 children, whatever that number is. We actually established a budget, worked out what we could afford, then started looking around.
It actually took quite a long time to find something. The market was pretty competitive, but we ended up finding a house, and our mortgage payments with everything was going to be $3,100 a month.
We were delighted because in the place I moved in, and everything was going great.
Obviously, then we had the housing market crash in 2008.
Truthfully, I wasn’t too worried about it. I had a good job, and we weren’t planning on going anywhere anytime soon.
The house price went down, but I had a friend, Barry– much older, and he said not to worry about it too much. He’d seen it all before.
“Just keep paying the mortgage, and as long as you do that, it’ll come back – you’ll be fine.”
He was, and still is, a staunch believer of what goes up must go down. Then he’ll tell you it will just go right back up again.
So actually, everything was fine for quite some time. Work was keeping us busy enough so we could keep paying the bills.
But in 2010, I got sick for a little bit, and then work started to slow down a lot– the boss had to lay me off.
So that you know me and my ex-boss are still great friends. There was nothing he could do. In fact, he kept me on the way longer than he really should of, and I am super thankful for that.
That was really tough, and it turned south pretty quickly from there.
We didn’t really have anything in savings, so we just couldn’t pay the bills without any other money coming in.
At first, we use credit cards as much as we could, but that quickly ran out. After that, we got behind on the mortgage payments. We started getting letters from the bank. It was a really horrible feeling, not being able to provide for my family.
So, in the end, the house was sold at auction. We stayed in it right up until the end. But then we had to find a place to rent.
To this date, that is definitely the lowest point in my life.
we didn’t give up
now I had two little girls that we’re relying on me.
Eventually, I was able to get more work, which is great. We caught up on all our bills he even started putting a little money aside. We worked on our credit– building scores back up.
My wife and I started feeling good again, so we set a goal. By 2014 we were going to buy another house. It was still our dream. We weren’t sure how but we were going to do it.
We spoke to a bank to learn what we needed to do to buy another house. It wasn’t rocket science. We were kind of doing the right things anyway.
Saving some money, working on our credit, stuff like that.
Well, 2014 came and when and we didn’t buy a house. But we were ok.
Because… that’s not where it ended.
We were really close. We knew it, and the bank knew it.
Then, finally, January 2015 rolled up, and we sat down again with the bank.
Guess what? They said that they would lend money to us for rebuying a house.
It was so awesome. My wife and I just looked at each other. We were going to get home again. For us, for our daughters to grow up in.
Just like losing the house was the worst feeling in my life, this was probably the best feeling I’ve ever had, apart from getting married and my two daughters, of course.
We got lucky and were in our new home by March. It happened real quick. We weren’t too picky – we knew what needed – stuck to that and pulled the trigger.
Thankfully too, because we got in just before our neighborhood went crazy. In 2015 Denver blew up! House prices went through the roof.
And that brings me to 2020.
We’re still happily in the same home, and I have the same job. Obviously, now, there’s a ton of uncertainty right now. The Corona Virus and the stock market are big uncertainties.
This time for me, it’s a little bit different.
Life has taught me a couple of things from last time.
Life Lesson Number 1.
Don’t spend money on stuff you don’t need.
Life Lesson Number 2.
Remember why you do it.
My “why” is my beautiful family. My why is also that I feel good owning a home, having friends, and giving my family financial security.
Life Lesson Number 3.
Talk to your bank NOW! And buy yourself a safety net.
Let me explain.
Firstly a disclaimer. I didn’t invent this. Smart people have been doing it for ages. I learned this from my old friend I introduced earlier – Barry.
SO – this is how I am “buying” a safety net.
I am in the process of refinancing my house and taking out $61,200– I never refi’d since 2015, so appreciation gives me equity. A lot of people can still do this.
I chose $61,200 because it represents 3 years of mortgage payments for me.
I’m putting that money in a bank account with my bank.
The only thing that money is for is to pay my mortgage if I lose my job.
When this crisis or recession is over, whatever is left in that account from the $61,200 I will pay back against my mortgage. Hopefully, it will be all of it. This time I have a little more savings etc.
It will cost me interest and my payments will go up a little…
This time I have a 3-year safety net, on top of my savings. I will not lose my home again.
It’s a wonderful feeling to know that we are in a much better position going into what might be a recession just by thinking about it.
Please share my story. I really think it could help some people.
I hope you all stay safe. Think about this option too.
Hi, My name is Shaun. A while back I did not feel financially secure at all. For me, this is very personal. I do understand the stress, anxiety, and fear of the unknown. You do have options. Ask around. People do care. I promise. Just keep asking.