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Do I Still Owe Home Improvement Loans if My House is in Foreclosure?

Foreclosure is a serious concern for many homeowners behind on their mortgage payments and at risk of default. This concern is even greater for people who took out home improvement loans or equity lines of credit and struggle to pay the bills on time. Although the real estate market in Kansas City has been improving since 2008, many people’s homes are still “underwater,” meaning the fair market value of the home is worth less than the primary mortgage. Underwater homes where the owners took out secondary mortgages, home improvement loans or equity lines and who are facing foreclosure have opportunities to greatly improve their situations. Know that if your home is foreclosed upon and you do not file bankruptcy, you will still be responsible for the secondary loans, even if you no longer own the house. The most beneficial path in such a situation may be to file Chapter 13…
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Where Can You Receive Free Tax Preparation in Kansas City?

There is no shame in seeking help to file your state and federal taxes. Our tax laws are complex, intimidating and constantly changing. The penalties for making mistakes may cause you fear and frustration when it comes time to file taxes. Fortunately, there are multiple ways you can find and receive free tax preparation in Kansas City. The following services may assist you with your tax problems and help you receive the maximum amount on your return. Option #1: Next Step KC: Next Step KC has several Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) programs in Kansas City. Professional volunteers working for these programs assist taxpayers with incomes of $54,000 or less. Two weeks ago, our blog discussed a Next Step KC VITA program at Johnson County Community College. However, there are many other VITA locations in Kansas City. For a listing of these programs, including the location and times you can…
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Mortgages Underwater? You Need a Chapter 13

Lien stripping is an important tool in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy – it allows a person with more than one mortgage to get rid of (strip off) the second and/or third mortgages if the property value is less than the balance due on the first mortgage. For example, if your house is worth $100,000 and the principal balance due on your first mortgage is more than $100,000 (even by just a penny), any other mortgages on your property can potentially be removed through a Chapter 13 bankruptcy plan. These stripped off mortgages are then treated the same ways as other general unsecured debt, like credit cards; they are paid only a percentage of the balance, and upon successful completion of a Chapter 13 case, your house is free of these extra mortgages. Many consumers wonder, however, if lien stripping is available in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Chapter 7 bankruptcy, unlike…
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Filing for Bankruptcy Can Resolve Serious Consequences of Debt

Some people might be apprehensive about filing for bankruptcy, believing it may harm their credit scores or reflect poorly on their financial futures. However, this is very far from the truth. Filing for bankruptcy can actually stop the worst-case serious consequences of debt from occurring, such as foreclosure or losing a business. Once the bankruptcy has been completed, debtors will receive a fresh start from which they can build a solid financial future. How Does Bankruptcy Resolve Serious Consequences of Debt? Foreclosure: Foreclosure is the worst-case scenario for homeowners behind on mortgage payments. Depending on the situation, filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy can save homes. Filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy will put an automatic stay into motion, which will halt all collection attempts, including foreclosure. For homeowners with multiple mortgages and undervalued homes, lien stripping is also a possibility. A lien strip allows some homeowners to eventually discharge second and…
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