I was dismayed the other day when I found out a Niceville Florida short sale seller could have used HAP (Homeowner Assistance Program) to sell his home, but did not.
Now, due to the reduced value of his property, and military PCS move, he has no choice to avoid foreclosure, but to short sale
Why? He qualified in every way: PCSd prior to September 2010, moved to a base more than 50 miles from Eglin Air Force Base, his property value had declined more than 10% and he had purchased his home prior to July 2006.
Why can’t he use HAP?
He refinanced his home for more than the original purchase price with the express purpose of investing in property improvements. Normally, this might be covered by HAP, but not for this Niceville seller. He did not save any receipts for improvements
. He paid for items with cash. In this case, HAP will only cover the original mortgage amount. To compound the problem, when he ran into financial difficulty, this Eglin AFB airman stopped paying his mortgage for several months (HAP will only cover “current” mortgage balances). Since he does not have the funds to pay the portion of the mortgage which far exceeds his original mortgage, or to pay past due mortgage payments, he is stuck with a short sale. Yes, short sale is normally a better option than foreclosure, but it will still affect his credit.
If you were stationed at Eglin Air Force Base or Hurlburt Field, owned a home, and PCSd prior to September 2010, you might qualify for the HAP program. If you made improvements to the home or took out an equity line or refinanced, to cover the extra amount you must provide: “legible invoices, detailed statements, receipts and proof of payment for each improvement”.
Don’t get stuck with a short sale or foreclosure if you are Air Force, Army, Marines, Navy or Coast Guard. Take advantage of the HAP program for your Niceville, Crestview, Navarre, Fort Walton Beach or Destin Florida home sale.
Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call toll-free 1-877-487-9639 or local 850-650-7883 ext 204