US

TIPS: Reduce Your Mortgage

On Happening Now today we had Greg Rand, a managing partner at Prudential Rand Realty. Wondering what someone in the biz thinks you should do in order to stay above water?

He gave us a list:

1. Loan Modification: Contact your bank (today), to begin negotiating a new mortgage. This is attractive because the costs are minimal and the banks are motivated

2. Refinance: Pay off your old loan with a new loan. It's best to start with your existing mortgage company because the closing costs will probably be lower. Refinancing requires you to qualify for the new loan. So good credit, and equity are a requirement.

3. New Options via Government Intervention: There is a lot of talk of new ways to get your payment down, but not many details. The most important is the creation of a 105% loan, enabling folks who are a little bit underwater to refinance. Details not available yet, but get ready and get in line.

4. If you are in trouble, contact a HUD certified housing counselor. They can work on each of the above on your behalf.

5. If you are really in trouble, sell the house and downsize.