California has been hard hit in this "great" recession but Modesto, in Stanislaus County ranked at the bottom, the very bottom of the just-released Brookings Institution analysis of homes in danger of going into foreclosure. Since the recession hit over 69,000 homes have been lost to foreclosure. Most of the new defaults are B of A as they're playing catch up on lost paperwork.
I know many people in our area, like you and me, that in normal times pay their bills promptly and are mortified they can't do so now. This embarassment or shame about not being able to make their mortgage causes people to delay taking action. Job loss, lost income, huge credit card debt (debt is our responsibility) and being upside down on their loans, (53% of residential properties in Stanislaus and San Joaquin are) can lead to avoiding the whole issue, but that is dangerous for your long term financial health.
The question for those of you that are in default is what is the right choice - short sale or forelosure? Here are 3 things you need to pay attention to: 1) Don't stick your head in the financial sand and ignore the fact action will need to be taken on your mortgage. If you do you could be forced into foreclosure. 2) AShort Sale will harm your credit for approximately 24 months as opposed to 7 years for a foreclosure. California is a state that cannot go after you once the short sale is complete. 3) Make sure you hire a Short Sale expert with a track record of closes and I recommend Kim Kelly of K2Sells. Kim is in the Palm Desert area, but handles short sales throughout California. And, she doesn't just handle them, she CLOSES them and has been doing so for 3 years.