About Foreclosure — First Steps

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Accurate information and a plan of action is KEY for homeowners either currently going through or facing potential foreclosure. The State of New Jersey and the Federal Government provide a variety of programs to assist homeowners. Information about these programs is FREE.

Here’s all the necessary info you’ll need to get started.

If you are in Foreclosure:

  • Contact the Office of the Courts Foreclosure Mediation Hotline at 888-989-5277 or visit www.njforeclosuremediation.org. This Foreclosure Mediation Program provides homeowners who are in foreclosure with access to housing counselors and court trained mediators to resolve foreclosure actions. A mediator and counselor will work with you and your lender to work out your mortgage so that your future payments will be affordable to you.
  • Review the Federal and State Mortgage Modification Programs available to you. There is NO FEE to get information about these programs.

If you are not in Foreclosure:

  • If you have missed a payment or payments or feel that you will soon miss a payment because your mortgage is no longer affordable to you, you should call your mortgage servicer. The number should be on your monthly mortgage bill or coupon book.
  • You may also contact a housing counseling agency in the county in which you live. See pages 3 and 4 of the Foreclosure Fast Facts (1.7MB PDF) (Spanish version) (2.2MB PDF) sheet for a list of counseling agencies. The counseling agencies listed here are non-profit, HUD certified and trained in foreclosure prevention.
  • Call Today, Do Not Delay! The sooner you call the more options you will have.

Beware of Foreclosure Rescue Scams – Help is FREE!

  • There is never a fee to get assistance to work out your mortgage or to get information about the programs listed here from your lender or a HUD certified housing counselor.
  • Beware of any person or organization that asks you to pay a fee in exchange for housing counseling services or modification of a delinquent loan. Do not pay – walk away!
  • Beware of anyone who says they can “save” your home if you sign or transfer over the deed to your house. Do not sign over the deed to your property to any organization or individual unless you are working directly with your mortgage company to forgive your debt.
  • Never submit your mortgage payments to anyone other than your mortgage company without their approval.
  • If in doubt – do not pay and walk away.

If You Feel You Have Been the Victim of Mortgage-Related Fraud

The Attorney General urges any member of the public who has been a victim of mortgage-related fraud to report it by calling the Division of Consumer Affairs’ toll-free hotline at 1-800-242-5846. Consumers from out of state can call 973-504-6200. Those seeking to file a complaint can also visit the Division’s website at www.njconsumeraffairs.gov.

If you feel you have been taken advantage of or misled by a lender, call Legal Services of New Jersey at 888-576-5529. Legal Services of NJ provides legal representation to low-income New Jersey homeowners.

Homeowners regardless of income level may file a complaint with the NJ Department of Banking and Insurance by calling 800-446-7467.

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