Last year I decided to work as a home retention consultant. This was one of the most difficult things I had ever taken on because I was going to have to show up unannounced and knock on the doors of people who were in pre-foreclosure and in danger of losing their home.
Not the most comfortable feeling, but since I had just been through the process I knew that I could help people if I got over my fear of knocking on doors.
Day one arrives and I pull up to the first house. I steel myself with reassurances that I have a service and a will to help. The nerves don’t subside, but I find the strength to knock on the door.
The woman that comes to the door is a beautiful, petite latina and is obviously not expecting me. She meets me on the porch and as I explain to her why I am there and what I hope to help with-she starts crying. The story that I hear includes a cheating husband she is kicking out, an attempt to finish her college degree, a tenant that doesn’t pay rent and all of this is her secret.
We make an appointment to fill out the loss mitigation paperwork and she reaches out to hug me. I have to paraphrase, but she said something like: “I will always remember this day and the way you looked when you showed up to help. You are my angel.”
Inflated and excited by the success of my first stop, I head to my next home.
This time I am met by a short middle aged man with lots of tattoos and a military buzz cut. I begin by explaining that I have an already designated loan modification that will reduce his principle, reduce his rate, restart the loan with no foreclosure and knock $600 a month off the payments. He responds with a tirade and the words “shotgun, burn the *&#()0($#’ing house down and they will have to get me first”.
He tells me to leave and I say that I am sorry I couldn’t help. I head back to the car to program the GPS and I see him heading towards my car. NOW I am nervous as can be. I roll down the window a half inch and let him talk.
He apologizes: I am collateral damage after he has spent countless hours on the phone trying to resolve his issues. He says, “I am sure I am the last person you would want to help after my outburst, but if you would accept my apology and come in, I sure would appreciate that.”
An hour, a pile of paperwork and a phone call later and his loan modification was in process and his house saved.
Every door is answered by a new story, but they are all so real and they all need help. These are two of the families that will be able to stay in their home because of the home retention program… it is a wonderful feeling to be part of that mission.