Fighting Off Foreclosure: One Woman's 3-Year Ordeal

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Dee fighting foreclosure on her homeBy Michele Lerner

When even a single home goes into foreclosure, the effects can be far reaching. In the case of Dee, when she faced foreclosure on her home in Prince George's County, Md., the potential hardship extended well beyond her immediate family.

Dee's home not only shelters some of her six children and occasionally her four grandchildren, but is also a place of refuge for neighbors, friends, and sometimes complete strangers who need a roof over their heads.

"I'm on the front lines of what's happening in our economy in terms of unemployment and people losing their homes," says Dee (who asked that we not use her last name). "I've been the neighborhood mom and have fed or given shelter to many people since I bought this house in 1999."

Recently, Dee provided a safe place to stay for a single mother and her four kids.

"She had lost her job and her apartment and was going to sleep in her car," Dee says. Dee and her adult children (ages 19 to 29) helped the woman get back on her feet. The woman found three jobs, started college classes, and gets her kids to school daily. Now the family is thriving in a safe environment.

Things could have turned out very differently for the woman, her kids, Dee and her family -- and the entire community. And they almost did when Dee nearly lost her home.

The First Blow

Dee says her home wasn't "comfortably affordable" right from the start, but she felt it was smarter to own a home than rent because she was a single parent with six children. She was fearful that rising rents would push her out of an apartment, so locking into a mortgage seemed to make more sense even though it was a stretch for her budget.

Dee worked for an international law firm and, thanks to her base salary and overtime pay, she was able to cover her mortgage. "I was diligent about paying my mortgage, and I didn't refinance when my home's value increased," she says.

That changed in 2008 when her company eliminated all overtime. "My income dropped. Although I tried to continue making payments, my mortgage eventually became delinquent," she says.

She sought a loan modification to make her mortgage payments more affordable. "But the bank returned my loan payment and began the foreclosure process."

Then on Sept. 11, 2009, Dee and 43 other employees of her law firm were laid off.

Read the rest of this story at Daily Finance.

21 PHOTOS
20 Regions Overrun by Foreclosures
See Gallery
Fighting Off Foreclosure: One Woman's 3-Year Ordeal

1 in every 328 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 859
Change from July 2012: -18.89 percent
Change from August 2011: -34.13 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/Chad Jones

1 in every 321 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 6,737
Change from July 2012: -11.92 percent
Change from August 2011: -22.30 percent

Source: Realty Trac

Photo: Flickr/Nrbelex

1 in every 309 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 5,819
Change from July 2012: +0.41 percent
Change from August 2011: -29.83 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

1 in every 308 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 4,390
Change from July 2012: -13.40 percent
Change from August 2011: +25.21 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/J. Stephen Conn

1 in every 299 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 2,002
Change from July 2012: -3.84 percent
Change from August 2011: +29.24 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/hawleyjr

1 in every 297 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 908
Change from July 2012: -27.99 percent
Change from August 2011: +56.55 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

1 in every 296 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 1,255
Change from July 2012: +40.22 percent
Change from August 2011: -8.66 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/mrak75

1 in every 285 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 3,312
Change from June 2012: +2.89 percent
Change from July 2011: +47.33 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/hao$

1 in every 282 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 541
Change from July 2012: -34.34 percent
Change from August 2011: -53.64 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/C Oda

1 in every 274 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 3,184
Change from July 2012: -16.82 percent
Change from August 2011: -40.11 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/El Cobrador

1 in every 267 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 9,238
Change from July 2012: +48.83 percent
Change from August 2011: +12.75 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/Vince Alongi

1 in every 249 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 586
Change from July 2012: +14.68 percent
Change from August 2011: +52.60 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

1 in every 235 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 16,192
Change from July 2012: +27.67 percent
Change from August 2011: +44.24 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/vxla

1 in every 223 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 429
Change from July 2012: +87.34 percent
Change from August 2011: +22.92 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/Loco Steve

1 in every 204 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 7,354
Change from July 2012: -8.21 percent
Change from August 2011: -27.22 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

1 in every 189 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 1,236
Change from July 2012: -19.16 percent
Change from August 2011: -28.39 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/inman news

1 in every 188 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 1,681
Change from July 2012: +178.31 percent
Change from August 2011: -2.38 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/prayitno

1 in every 185 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 1,538
Change from July 2012: +62.24 percent
Change from August 2011: -1.47 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

1 in every 153 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 458
Change from July 2012: +49.67 percent
Change from August 2011: +12.53 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

1 in every 172 homes received a foreclosure filing in August 2012.

Properties with foreclosure filings: 1,046
Change from July 2012: +13.57 percent
Change from August 2011: -22.92 percent

Source: RealtyTrac

Photo: Flickr/Tom Hilton

of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE
SHOW CAPTION +
HIDE CAPTION

More on AOL Real Estate:
Find out how to
calculate mortgage payments.
Find
homes for sale in your area.
Find
foreclosures in your area.
Find homes for rent in your area.

Follow us on Twitter at @AOLRealEstate or connect with AOL Real Estate on Facebook.
Read Full Story

Find a Home

Buy
Rent
Value
Powered by Zillow

People are Reading