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A Homeowner in Miami :: Hardship Letter to Countrywide

Watercolor by Woody Hansen
Watercolor by Woody Hansen

To whom it may concern:

For the past seventeen months and counting I have been enduring to the best of my ability a financial hardship that is threatening to result, when all is said and done, in foreclosure.

I am writing this letter to explain what has changed since I purchased my condo in February of 2006 and why delinquent mortgage payments are to be expected if I remain encumbered with this property.

My goal is to avoid a foreclosure and come to an agreement that will result, provided the condition of the housing market, in the best of all possible worlds for Countrywide.

When I purchased my condo at the beginning of 2006, the financial situation for residential trainee appraisers in South Florida was promising.  As evidence I have only to refer to my 1099 for that year, which shows a compensation of $34,193.  However, consistent with the bleak trends in the real estate industry, that same figure for the following year suffered more than a 37% decrease, totaling $21,517.  Moreover, my property taxes went up more than 800%, from $277 in 2006 to $2,590 in 2007 due to homestead laws and a re-assessment of the property after new ownership that I did not anticipate being so outrageous.  To make matters worse, my Condo Association increased monthly payments 42%, going from the reasonable amount of $240 in 2006 to $340 in 2007.

Needless to say, 2008 is showing no signs of relief.  I can expect the same property taxes and the same HOA payment in addition to my monthly mortgage of $1,328.  That makes a monthly total of $1,884 just to stay current on my property.  My last bi-weekly paycheck was $915, and the one before that was $905, and the one before that was $790.  In other words, I am making an average of $1,600 – $1,800 per month, an amount that has proved insufficient to properly manage my property for the past seventeen months and counting.

To say nothing of my car and insurance payments, my student loan debt, my electricity and my grocery bills, and gas prices that make it ever more difficult to drive to inspections in the Tri-County area.

Until now I have been toughing it out from month to month in hope of seeing a turnaround in my income, but my job, like the economy, is depressed beyond repair, and I am at a low point now that leaves me no other choice but to write this hardship letter and remedy this predicament by having Countrywide accept a short sale offer as payment in full as opposed to a foreclosure.


A Homeowner in Miami

February 1, 2009 2:41 pm

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