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Steps to Take When Mortgage Rates Increase During the Buying Process

Whether this is your first home or you are an experienced buyer, mortgage rate increases have given way to an alarmingly volatile atmosphere within the housing market. If you are in the process of buying property, it is important you know what steps to take when mortgage rates increase while in the middle of a real estate transaction. 

Attorney Daryl L. Jones of The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A is a top-rated real estate attorney with over 30 years experience assisting clients with every process involved in real estate transactions. Many buyers have opted to drop out of the market in hopes that mortgage rates will level out in the coming months. For buyers like you who have decided to forge ahead with plans to purchase property, here are a few steps to help you cope with rising mortgage rates. 

Seven Steps for a Buyer to Adapt to Rising Mortgage Rates in Florida

If you are in the process of buying property in Florida, ever increasing mortgage rates may have you concerned about today’s housing market. To help you adapt to rising mortgage rates during the buying process, follow these steps:

Shop Around for Loans

You should consider multiple lenders to find the best rate for the loan program that will work best for you.

Increase Your Down Payment

If you have the resources, placing a larger down payment will help decrease the amount of your mortgage loan. As a result, this will also reduce the amount in interest you will pay, and in turn, reduce your monthly mortgage payment. 

Ask Family for Help

Whether you ask for a loan or a family member gives you money as a gift for a downpayment, this may be one way to help reduce the amount you need to borrow for a mortgage loan. 

Consider an Adjustable-Rate Mortgage

An adjustable-rate mortgage, or ARM, is an option many buyers are considering because this type of mortgage has a lower interest rate for the initial fixed period. However, you should proceed with caution. Should ARM payments increase above your ability to pay, you must have an exit strategy to refinance or to pay off this loan, or risk losing your home to foreclosure.

Shop for a Home That Has Been on the Market for a Long Period

For homes that have been on the housing market for three weeks or longer, buyers may be able to purchase the home for less and borrow less as a result. 

Consider the Location of the Property

Consider purchasing property in a location with lower property taxes and lower homeowner association dues. This will help offset the higher monthly payment that comes with a higher interest rate.

Lock in a Mortgage Rate While You Are Still Shopping

As long as you ratify a contract within 30 to 45 days of your loan approval date, some lenders offer to lock in a mortgage rate before a contract has been signed by both parties. This will prevent you from having to pay a higher mortgage rate just because you waited longer to decide to purchase a property. 

Get Help From a South Florida Real Estate Lawyer

Rising mortgage rates can make it stressful for buyers as they try to get the best and most cost effective deal for their new property. To get help adapting to the current housing market climate, contact a South Florida real estate lawyer as soon as possible.

Daryl L. Jones of The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A is a former state senator, retired air force colonel, and practicing lawyer in Florida for over 30 years. To retain the help of a top-rated attorney and get excellent advice concerning your real estate legal needs, schedule a free initial strategy session by calling 786-876-9604, or contact us here.

How Long Will the Current Housing Frenzy Last?

Whether you are looking to purchase your first home or you are selling property to start fresh elsewhere, if you are involved in any type of real estate transaction currently then you know that the country is in the midst of a housing frenzy. With the price of homes in the United States reaching record breaking highs, you may wonder if this frenzy will ever end. While the end may not be as near as some would like, housing economists have assured that the housing frenzy cannot last forever. 

The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A is a top-rated real estate law firm helping clients in South Florida handle all of their real estate transaction needs. While it has been reported that housing prices are growing six times faster than wages, home prices cannot outpace the growth of income forever. 

Is the Current Housing Frenzy Going to End?

With soaring mortgage rates and a potential recession on the horizon, you may wonder how long the current housing frenzy will last before the market crashes altogether. A housing frenzy is a term used to describe a growing shift in the market. In other words, many sellers take advantage of the real estate market by listing their properties at higher-than-average prices. In response, buyers are backing off due to rising interest rates and inflation which are making homes less affordable. 

As of July of this year, the buyer frenzy of the past year has begun to slow and taper off. Note, this does not necessarily mean the majority of housing is expected to go down in price, but that its growth has slowed substantially.

How Can a Real Estate Lawyer Help You in the Current Housing Market?

Whether you are the buyer or the seller, taking part in a real estate transaction in this current climate can be stressful. With the housing frenzy winding down and a potential market crash on the horizon, it may be in your best interest to retain the assistance of a South Florida real estate lawyer. A real estate lawyer may be able to help you through the buying and selling process. The benefits you may gain from retaining a real estate lawyer include:

Ensure the Property Is Fit for Use

If you are the buyer, your lawyer can investigate the different restrictions placed by zoning and land use laws, examine the regulations instituted by a homeowners association if applicable,  and investigate any easements on the property that could restrict your ability to make renovations or expansions.

Uncover Any Outstanding Liens

An issue with a chain of title can lead to someone else having the right to claim ownership over your property after the purchase is complete. Your real estate lawyer will perform a title examination and title search to uncover any liens on the property that could lead to a real estate dispute in the future.

Secure Financing

With the help of your lawyer, you can get pre-approved for a mortgage loan that will best suit your needs.

Prevent Legal Disputes

There are various legal disputes that can arise during a real estate transaction as the buyer or the seller. However, when you work with an experienced attorney, you may be able to avoid these issues. 

To get help with any of your real estate legal needs, contact a South Florida real estate lawyer as soon as possible.

Speak With a Top-Rated Real Estate Lawyer Today

Whether you are a buyer or a seller, the current housing market can be overwhelming. To ensure your real estate transactions are handled without issue, retain the help of a South Florida real estate lawyer as soon as possible.

The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A is a South Florida real estate law firm with over 30 years experience helping clients avoid legal disputes when going through the real estate transaction process. To schedule a free initial strategy session, contact us here or call 786-876-9604.

Current Mortgage Rates Are Still Rising: How to Create a Plan

As a homeowner, the current rise of mortgage rates can make it difficult to properly plan and budget as you try to keep your payments current. As you navigate the current housing market climate, it is important you have the knowledge and tools to create a plan to keep yourself in check as current mortgage rates continue to increase. 

The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A is a South Florida real estate law firm with more than 30 years of experience assisting clients in all of their real estate legal needs. With mortgage rates continuing on the current trend, many homeowners are in need of legal advice to ensure they are taking the right steps to protect themselves and their homes. 

Create a Plan to Protect Your Home From Rising Mortgage Rates

As rising mortgage rates on American homes begin to take a toll on homeowners’ wallets, there comes a point where you need a plan in place to ensure your home is protected. Generally, higher mortgage rates mean a higher monthly payment. If your mortgage is not fixed, and is affected by rising interest rates, you are probably concerned about staying current on your mortgage loan. As mortgage rates continue to rise, the following steps will help you create a plan to prevent you from falling behind and potentially losing your home. 

Take a Close Look at Your Overall Budget

When looking at your monthly housing budget, take into consideration the entirety of your monthly expenses. A well known general rule of thumb is that a homeowner should try to limit spending on housing expenses (mortgage payments, property taxes, property insurance, and homeowner association or condominium association fees) to around 30 percent of their gross monthly income (before personal income taxes and social security are deducted). If you find you are exceeding this due to rising mortgage rates, you may need to reevaluate your budget. 

Investigate Available Interest Rates

Just as it is important to have a trustworthy real estate agent, with the current housing climate it is also crucial that you have a mortgage lender you can trust. When looking into different mortgage lenders, you should compare available interest rates and ask each lender about any fees they may charge. You should also speak with your lender to get a general understanding of how your monthly mortgage payment may change as rates increase over time.

Make Sure You Fully Understand the Terms of Your Mortgage

When deciding to use a mortgage loan to help purchase a home, it is vital that you fully understand the terms of your mortgage. An experienced real estate lawyer can help you understand your mortgage while helping you devise the best path to ensuring your monthly payments are affordable moving forward. This may be done by increasing your down payment when purchasing your home, or you may decide to consider an adjustable-rate mortgage. Your lawyer may be able to help you choose the option that is best for you to ensure you remain current as mortgage rates continue to skyrocket on American homes.  

Speak With a Top-Rated Real Estate Lawyer About Your South Florida Mortgage

With rising mortgage rates and even higher home prices, the housing market is less than welcoming to prospective buyers and homeowners without fixed rate mortgages. To help combat the risk of foreclosure that looms as mortgage rates skyrocket, having a plan in place to ensure you are taking all the steps necessary to keep your mortgage current can help exponentially. 

The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A is a South Florida real estate law firm. Attorney Daryl L. Jones is dedicated to helping clients with all of their real estate needs as they work to avoid foreclosure during this period of rising mortgage rates. Whether you are a buyer or a seller, Attorney Daryl L. Jones has more than 30 years of experience in various types of real estate disputes. To schedule a free initial strategy session, contact us here or call 786-876-9604.

What Is a Florida Tax Lien Foreclosure?

Potentially losing your home to a tax lien foreclosure is a situation in which homeowners do not want to find themselves. Many Florida homeowners may be unaware that they may find themselves at risk of losing their home to a tax lien foreclosure even if they are on time with their monthly loan payments. A tax lien foreclosure can occur if a homeowner’s loan is not escrowed to automatically pay the property taxes and property insurance, and the homeowner fails to pay the property taxes. 

The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A. is a Florida real estate law firm dedicated to ensuring that our clients understand the different ways they may risk losing their home, and how to prevent such losses. If you are unaware of what a Florida tax lien foreclosure is, it is crucial that you understand it and how you may avoid it. 

Understand the Florida Tax Lien Foreclosure

Many homeowners make the mistake of assuming that as long as they are making their mortgage payments, they are safe from foreclosure. If your loan is escrowed so as to automatically pay your property taxes and property insurance, then your lender is obligated to pay your taxes and insurance each year. However, if you are unable to afford to pay your mortgage payments your lender may not pay your property taxes. Or if your mortgage loan is not escrowed, you are responsible for paying your property insurance and property taxes each year on your own. In such cases, neglecting to pay your property taxes while still paying the mortgage will not save your home. 

If you fail to pay your Florida property taxes for three consecutive years, you may be at risk of a tax lien foreclosure. This type of foreclosure is initiated by the county where your property is located because they have the lien on your property once you fail to pay your taxes. If your county issues documents providing notice of a tax lien foreclosure, you may decide to use a few options to save your home. 

How to Prevent a Florida Tax Lien Foreclosure

While you may feel helpless as you face the possibility of a tax lien foreclosure, there are options to help you avoid this. With the help of an experienced Florida real estate lawyer, you can choose the best option for your specific situation. Some of these options include:

Object to the Assessments

As a homeowner, it is your right to object to the property tax assessment of the amount of money you owe and reduce your property tax liability. You may claim that the property was not assessed properly or that your property is assessed at a much higher value than comparable properties in your county. If the assessment is reduced, it may result in lowered property taxes which may allow you to pay off your property tax debts more easily. 

Seek an Abatement, a Deferral, or a Compromise

In Florida, you may be eligible to apply for a tax abatement that can reduce your property tax liability based on a person’s disability, age, income level, and personal status. Your county may also grant you a deferral if you are able to prove that you have suffered financial hardship. Another option is to negotiate a compromise concerning the amount of taxes you owe with the help of a real estate lawyer.

Redeem Your Home

If the tax lien foreclosure has already entered into the sale phase, your county may provide for a period of time after the sale when you may redeem your home by paying the property taxes owed, plus interest, penalties, and costs.

Set Aside a Completed Tax Sale

With the help of a Florida lawyer, you may be able to show that there is a defect in the tax lien or in the tax deed sale process of your home. This may provide grounds for setting aside the sale. Setting aside the tax deed sale means that the sale is considered invalid and you may be able to retain ownership of your home. 

Contact a Florida Tax Lien Foreclosure Lawyer

There are different ways a person can lose their home to tax lien foreclosure. If you are at risk of losing your Florida home to tax lien foreclosure, it is vital that you know the options you have to prevent the sale of your property. The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A. is a Florida law firm dedicated to helping clients keep their homes who have been issued tax lien foreclosure documents. To schedule a free initial strategy session with Attorney Daryl L. Jones, contact us here or call 305-969-3602.

2 Ways to Prevent Foreclosure in Florida

After being served with foreclosure documents, you may think your fate is sealed. While your situation may look grim, you should not accept foreclosure until you have exhausted every option available to save your home. In Florida, there are at least two ways to prevent the foreclosure of your home. 

The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A, is a real estate law firm with experience helping thousands of clients save their homes from foreclosure in Florida. Not only is your home a substantial financial investment, we also understand you have invested time and memories into your home as well. It is the goal of Attorney Daryl L. Jones and his team to help clients understand their options to avoid foreclosure so they can continue to enjoy their Florida homes for years to come. 

How Can You Prevent the Foreclosure of Your Florida Home?

There are many different reasons why homeowners may find themselves facing foreclosure. Whether you have lost your job, have costly medical bills, or are unable to keep up with your mortgage payments due to general financial hardship, going through a time of struggle should not mean that you have to lose your home. To prevent the foreclosure of your home, there are at least two options:

Reinstatement

If temporary financial hardship prevents your from making your mortgage payments, and if you have a way to come up with the past due payments, you may request a quote from the bank or servicer that will detail the amount you need to pay to reinstate your mortgage loan. You should keep in mind that if you pay the amount due at the top of your mortgage statement, this typically means you reinstated only the past due payments, and have not yet paid off your home. 

If you choose to reinstate your loan, remember to note the date by which your delinquent payments are due. It is in your best interests to submit your delinquent payments well before the due date. If you only pay back a partial amount of your delinquent payments, the lender will likely reject your reinstatement. If you are considering reinstatement as the best option to prevent the foreclosure of your home, speak with a Florida real estate lawyer as soon as possible. In certain cases, a Florida real estate lawyer may be able to negotiate a reduction of the total required to reinstate your loan. 

Loan Modification

One of the more commonly known options for preventing the foreclosure of your home in Florida is to apply for a loan modification. A loan modification changes the terms of your existing mortgage loan. A loan modification typically offers you a lower interest rate or a longer loan term to decrease your monthly payment. The loan modification process typically takes several months and can become convoluted for those who do not have experience with real estate law in Florida. For example, to obtain a loan modification in Florida, one step requires you to document the exact circumstances that caused you to miss your monthly payments, and why those circumstances will no longer prevent you from making future payments. That is why it is crucial that you work with a knowledgeable lawyer who can ensure you complete each step necessary to obtain the loan modification and to avoid losing your home. 

Get Help From a Florida Foreclosure Lawyer Today

If you are at risk of losing your home to foreclosure, it is important that you understand your options. To get help with the process of reinstatement or loan modification, it is crucial that you contact a Florida foreclosure lawyer as soon as possible. 

The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A, is a Florida law firm dedicated to helping clients keep their homes when they are faced with foreclosure. To schedule a free initial strategy session with Attorney Daryl L. Jones, contact us here or call 305-969-3602.

Are Foreclosure Rates on the Rise in Florida?

With inflation in the United States reaching some of the highest rates many homeowners have seen, it is no surprise that foreclosure rates have risen exponentially in many states. With gas prices and the cost to buy groceries skyrocketing amongst other necessary costs, many Americans are suffering financial hardship as a result of these rising prices. It should come as no surprise that with prices rising across the country, Florida’s foreclosure rates are on the rise. 

The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A. is a Florida real estate law firm with experience helping clients keep their homes when they are faced with foreclosure. Despite foreclosure rates rising in Florida, there are ways you can avoid losing your home when you work with our experienced real estate lawyers. 

Florida Foreclosure Rates are Among the Highest in the Nation

Inflation in the United States has reached a forty year high, making financial hardship common amongst citizens. In Florida, residents have been hit hard by the reality of rising costs, thus challenging their abilities to keep their homes. As a result, Florida has the second highest rate of foreclosures in the country. 

Most home buyers take out a loan to be able to afford the cost. This means they may pay a certain percentage of the purchase price as a down payment at the time they acquire the property and then make payments to their loan lender over time. These loans are typically paid back through monthly payments with a certain interest rate. Unfortunately, if homeowners are no longer able to keep their loan payments current, their lender may initiate a foreclosure. If you are at risk of losing your Florida home, there are options that may help you avoid foreclosure. 

How to Prevent the Foreclosure of Your Florida Home

When you have been issued foreclosure papers, it may feel like your only option is to concede to the reality that you will lose your home. However, that is not the case. With the help of an experienced real estate lawyer, there are a few options you have that could help you save your home. To prevent the foreclosure of your home, there are at least two options:

Loan Modification

A Loan modification alters the terms of your existing mortgage loan to provide you with a lower interest rate or an extended loan term to lower your monthly payment. To be granted a loan modification in Florida, among other things, you must document the exact circumstances that led to your inability to pay your monthly loan payments. The loan modification process is lengthy and may become very confusing for those who do not have experience with real estate law in Florida. That is why it is vital you work with a trusted lawyer who can help you complete each step of the loan modification process so your application may be approved. 

Reinstatement

If you have a way to come up with the missed payments you owe your lender, you may request a bill from the bank that will detail the amount you need to pay to be reinstated as the homeowner. If you choose to apply for reinstatement, your lender will provide a due date by which you must have all of your delinquent fees paid. If you only pay back a portion of your delinquent payments, the lender will likely reject your reinstatement.

Get Help From a Florida Foreclosure Lawyer

If you are at risk of losing your Florida home to foreclosure, it is crucial that you know what options you have to prevent this. The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A. is a Florida law firm dedicated to helping clients keep their homes who have been issued foreclosure documents. To schedule a free initial strategy session with Attorney Daryl L. Jones, contact us here or call 305-969-3602.

Understanding the Short and Long Term Effects of Filing Bankruptcy

Undergoing immense financial hardship can significantly affect a person’s overall well-being. Aside from struggling to keep up with necessary bills, a person who has found themselves in serious debt may also suffer mentally. If you feel helpless as you try to understand how to dig yourself out from under the debt you are in, one option you may consider is filing bankruptcy. However, with any major financial decision, it is vital that you understand the short and long-term effects of filing bankruptcy. 

The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A, is a Florida real estate law firm with over eight years experience assisting clients who are considering filing bankruptcy. Bankruptcy can offer relief and challenges, so it is important that individuals weigh the pros and cons to understand whether this path is best for their current and future financial situation. 

The Short-Term Impact of Filing Bankruptcy

There are many reasons a person may find themselves in unmanageable debt. Some examples include:

  • Job loss
  • Death of the primary financial provider in a family
  • Costly medical bills that must be paid

Regardless of why you are struggling financially, those facing heavy debts commonly file Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. When filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy, your debts will be erased. However, in order to pay off these debts, consumers often lose valuable assets as a result. 

Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows a judge to establish a viable, monthly repayment plan where you can pay back some or all of your debts. In this case, you will stop receiving the nagging calls from collection agencies as long as you can keep your payments current. Some of your creditors may even forgive a portion of your debt if you are able to show progress in paying your monthly payments. 

What Are the Long-Term Impacts of Filing Bankruptcy?

While bankruptcy is a great option to relieve the stress of financial hardship, there are long-term impacts that you should be aware of before you choose to proceed. After filing bankruptcy, you may need to live primarily as a cash consumer with limited access to credit. In other words, if you do not have the actual cash to purchase a product or service, you will not be able to buy it. 

While this may be worrisome for individuals considering bankruptcy, it should be viewed as an opportunity to work on their financial management skills. Because bankruptcy leaves consumers with a clean slate, it is a chance to learn how to better manage the money you do have while building your credit. 

Your credit will take a significant hit due to filing bankruptcy, so if you know that an employer or new landlord may check your credit report, it may be worthwhile to consider filing a letter with credit agencies explaining the circumstances leading to your bankruptcy filing. If you are unsure what to include in your letter, you should consult an experienced bankruptcy attorney

Get Help From a Florida Bankruptcy Attorney

Struggling with immense amounts of debt can be frightening. When you feel there is no way out of the debt, bankruptcy may be the solution to offer you the relief you need. 

Attorney Aimee Melich of The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A, has over eight years experience helping clients in South Florida who are considering filing bankruptcy. Our law firm is dedicated to providing outstanding legal services, and we will communicate with you through every step of the process. To schedule a free initial strategy session, fill out our contact form or call 305-969-3602.

Debunking 5 Common Misconceptions About Bankruptcy

Choosing to file bankruptcy can be a highly emotional experience. After suffering beneath the weight of unmanageable debt, bankruptcy may offer relief and a clean slate, but there are also several negative connotations associated with bankruptcy. If you think bankruptcy may be the best solution to help with your financial hardships, you should be aware of the most common misconceptions about bankruptcy so you can move forward with the process with as much knowledge as possible. 

The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A, is a Florida real estate law firm dedicated to helping clients considering bankruptcy. Our goal is to ensure that our clients feel confident about their decision to file bankruptcy by ensuring we debunk any misconceptions that may be holding them back from moving forward. 

5 Misconceptions About Bankruptcy in Florida

Filing bankruptcy is a big decision that can leave you feeling anxious as you assess the effects this choice may have on your future financial situation. You have likely heard various ominous misconceptions concerning what will happen if you decide to file bankruptcy. However, many of these rumors are simply not true. The most common misconceptions about bankruptcy include:

Individuals Who File Bankruptcy Are Deadbeats

The idea that all individuals who file bankruptcy are deadbeats or freeloaders is entirely misguided. Your creditors know there are many reasons a person may suffer financial hardships that could lead to high amounts of debt. Some examples of why a person may be unable to pay off his or her debts are:

  • Job loss
  • Divorce
  • Costly medical bills

If you require relief from your crippling debt, you should not be ashamed to file bankruptcy. It is a commonly used method to allow people to reset their financial situation. 

You Lose All Property After Filing Bankruptcy

While you may lose some of your property when filing bankruptcy, it is not true that you will definitely lose it all. Depending on the type of bankruptcy you file, chapter 7 or chapter 13, you may be able to keep some of your assets. This is one reason that it is crucial to work with a Florida bankruptcy attorney who will work to protect your rights and your property to the best of his or her ability throughout the bankruptcy process. 

You Will Be Fired From Your Job

The law prohibits employers from discriminating against an employee due to bankruptcy. If you are fired from your job due to bankruptcy, you should speak with a bankruptcy attorney as soon as possible to help you get justice. 

You Will Never Be Able to Establish Credit Again

It is no secret that your credit will take a significant hit following your bankruptcy. However, if those who remain diligent about paying their bills on time and who manage their finances more responsibly, frequently recover their credit rating in a mere two years. You too may be able to recover your credit rating in as little as two years.

You Have to Be Broke to File Bankruptcy

While bankruptcy is often recommended as a last resort when experiencing financial hardship, you do not need to reach the point of being completely broke to file. Bankruptcy is an opportunity to seek relief whenever a person can no longer pay back his or her debt, but that does not mean you have to have zero dollars in the bank. If you have questions about whether you are eligible to file bankruptcy, you should speak with a trusted bankruptcy attorney. 

Contact a Florida Bankruptcy Lawyer Today

The choice to file bankruptcy should not be taken lightly. However, while bankruptcy is a big decision, it is not the end of your financial well-being. Even though bankruptcy can negatively impact your credit, it can also provide much-needed relief for those struggling with debt. 

To get help with the bankruptcy process, contact Attorney Daryl L. Jones of The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A. Our real estate law firm has over 30 years of experience helping clients in Florida struggling with debt. For a free initial strategy session, contact us here or call 305-969-3602.

How Florida Bankruptcy Exemptions Work

If you are suffering from extensive debt that you are unable to pay, you may feel helpless as you try to understand how to best take the next step. Filing bankruptcy is one option that allows you to achieve a clean slate financially and get back on your feet. While there are advantages to filing bankruptcy, you must be careful when attempting to do things on your own because certain bankruptcy laws may cause you to lose some of your property which you could have used to pay back some or all of your debt. An experienced bankruptcy attorney can explain to you all available bankruptcy chapters, and instruct you on how to best protect your assets depending on your individual goals. In your specific case, you may be eligible for certain exemptions that could allow you to protect some of your property when filing bankruptcy.

The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A, is a Florida law firm that is dedicated to helping clients who suffer from unmanageable debts. If you are thinking about filing bankruptcy, it is important that you understand how Florida bankruptcy exemptions work.

Understanding Florida Bankruptcy Exemptions

Regardless of whether you file Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you can protect property that is covered by a Florida bankruptcy exemption. However, each chapter treats property that is not covered by an exemption differently. For example:

Chapter 7: If you own property not covered by an exemption, the bankruptcy could may require you to sell those items and distribute the proceeds to your creditors. Alternatively, your bankruptcy attorney may be able to negotiate a payment plan which will allow you to keep those items.

Chapter 13: You get to keep all of your property in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. With the help of your bankruptcy attorney you can present a payment plan to the court which is based either on the equity of your personal property, or your monthly disposable income after the court takes into account your necessary expenses.

If you and your spouse both own the property in question, this may double the exemption for qualifying properties. This doubling applies for all Florida bankruptcy exemptions except the homestead exemption. The homestead exemption in Florida covers your entire home which is protected from creditors, even if it is paid in full. If you are uncertain which real or personal property you own may qualify as an exemption in Florida, it is important that you consult a knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney.

When Can You Use Florida Bankruptcy Exemptions?

You have the right to file bankruptcy in Florida after you have lived in the state for 180 days. However, you must live here much longer to be eligible for Florida’s exemptions. In order to be eligible for bankruptcy exemptions in Florida, you must have resided in the state for 730 days (or two years) before filing a bankruptcy petition. If you have been in Florida for less than two years, you may still file bankruptcy in Florida but you must use the exemptions from the state where you resided prior to moving to Florida.  Some of the Florida bankruptcy exemptions you may be eligible to use when filing bankruptcy include:

Homestead Exemption

As long as your homestead property is no larger than half an acre if located in a municipality, or no larger than 160 acres if located elsewhere, you may exempt an unlimited amount of equity in your primary home or any other property covered by the homestead exemption. You are eligible for this exemption only if you have owned the property for at least 1,215 days before filing bankruptcy.

Personal Property Exemptions

The personal properties that are exempt in Florida bankruptcy cases are:

  1. Personal property that is valued up to $1,000. This can include furniture, art, and electronics. In addition, if you do not use the homestead exemption, you can exempt personal property valued up to $4,000.
  2. Retirement plans and 401(K)s
  3. Retroactive Social Security or Disability payments
  4. Insurance claims on your homestead
  5. Education savings accounts
  6. Prescribed health aids
  7. Prepaid medical savings account and health savings account deposits
  8. Tax credits, and
  9. Some refunds

If you are unsure if your personal property qualifies for a bankruptcy exemption, consult with a bankruptcy lawyer as soon as possible.

Motor Vehicle Exemption

You can exempt up to $1,000 in motor vehicle equity. This amount increases if you are married and filed jointly.

Exemptions for Wages

Wages of the head of the household are exempt up to $750 per week. This applies to paid and unpaid wages and any wages deposited in a bank account during the last six months before filing bankruptcy.

Get Help From a Florida Bankruptcy Lawyer

There are many different exemptions available to individuals who file bankruptcy in the state of Florida. If you are unsure which exemptions you may be eligible for, consult a Florida bankruptcy lawyer for more information.The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A, is a Florida bankruptcy law firm uniquely qualified to help clients as they navigate the bankruptcy process in Florida. To set up a free initial strategy session, contact us here or call 305-969-3602.

How Many Times Can You Apply for Florida Loan Modification?

Few things are as frightening as the possibility of losing your home. Our homes are often an extension of ourselves and hold just as much of a personal investment as a financial one. If you are at risk of losing your house, you are likely willing to do whatever it takes to avoid foreclosure. In Florida, loan modification is one option that may be beneficial for you and your lender. However, if you previously applied for a loan modification and was unsuccessful, you may be thinking you are out of luck. In reality, there is no limit to how many times you may apply for a loan modification in Florida. However, many lenders have a limit on how many loan modifications they may approve for a single loan.

At The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A., our South Florida real estate law firm has experience helping clients avoid losing their homes. Even if you applied for a loan modification and were denied, Attorney Daryl L. Jones may be able to help you build a strong loan modification application, and negotiate an approval from your lender.

Is There a Limit for How Many Times You May Apply for a Loan Modification?

The potential of losing one’s home to foreclosure can leave a homeowner feeling helpless. A borrower may negotiate a loan modification as a great option to obtain affordable mortgage payments. However, it is not easy to navigate the approval process for a loan modification. Whether your lender denied your previous loan modification applications or you received a loan modification and are facing foreclosure again, you may be concerned about applying again. While the process of applying for a loan modification can be daunting, homeowners may apply an unlimited number of times. Our law firm usually obtains approval for a client’s loan modification on the first or second submission. 

If you have previously been granted a modification to your mortgage loan but are in need of another, your lender can use their underwriting process to determine if you are eligible for another modification. Lenders frequently limit borrowers to three loan modification approvals. With most lenders the qualifications for an additional loan modification are very similar to the requirements that were in place the first time you applied:

  • Sufficient Income
  • Manageable Expenses
  • Bank statements demonstrating you have enough available income to make payments
  • Taxes filed with the IRS

In addition to providing the above information, it is also recommended that you write your lender a hardship letter explaining the circumstances that caused you to need another modification to your mortgage loan. Regardless of why you are applying for a loan modification an additional time, a Florida real estate lawyer may be able to help you get approved. 

How Can a Lawyer Help With Your Florida Loan Modification Application?

The process of applying for a loan modification can be daunting. Since real estate law can easily become convoluted, it can leave homeowners feeling overwhelmed as they try to navigate the many steps of applying for a loan modification in Florida. This is why it is crucial that you work with an experienced real estate lawyer. When you work with a real estate lawyer that has knowledge of Florida’s loan modification process, they may be able to help you if:

  • You are unsure whether a loan modification can prevent the foreclosure of your home
  • You do not understand how to fill out the loss mitigation application
  • Your loan servicer violates federal or state laws during the modification process
  • Your loan servicer has failed to comply with Florida foreclosure laws
  • Your request for a loan modification has been denied by your servicer

If you are at risk of losing your home and believe a loan modification may be the best option for you, contact a Florida real estate lawyer who may help you get your loan modification application approved. 

Get Help From a Florida Loan Modification Lawyer

The Florida loan modification process can be highly stressful. That is why Attorney Daryl L. Jones of The Law Offices of Daryl L. Jones, P.A. is dedicated to providing clients with the trusted representation that wields outstanding results. With over 30 years of experience practicing law, our legal team will communicate with you every step of the way. To schedule a free initial strategy session, contact us here or call 305-969-3602.