Times are tough, and if you had bad credit when you got your mortgage, you might still have bad credit and be unable to refinance. However, if your mortgage is causing you some hardship and you are in danger of defaulting, contact your mortgage lender about a loan modification.

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If your mortgage payment (including principal, interest, taxes, insurance, and HOA dues if applicable) exceeds 31% of your gross monthly income, you may qualify. The HAMP Web page gives a lot more details. You'll also need to know if your bad credit mortgage lender is participating in HAMP. You can find that out HERE.

Even if your lender is not a HAMP participant, or you don't meet the program guidelines, you may be able to score a loan mod anyway. Better for the lender to modify your mortgage than to see the income stream dry up.

Lender May Meet You HAFA Way

An alternative to a HAMP modification is the new HAFA (Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternative) short sale program, which rolls out in April. That provides a formalized and streamlined procedure and timeline for short sales and takes the uncertainty out of the process. Should you wish to sell your property, you'll know up front what price the lender is willing to accept and your buyer can have a lot more confidence that the deal will go through.

Finally, try an FHA or bad credit mortgage lender. You have nothing to lose by filling out the form on this site, and you may find a company willing to get you a better interest rate than you have now.