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Home Damaged by Flood? What Happens to Mortgage Payments when House is Unlivable?

Question:  My house was damaged in a flood and I’m unable to live in it.  Do I have to make my mortgage payments?Answer:  Yes.  Most home loan documents require the homeowner to make mortgage payments even after a disaster – even if your house is destroyed and you cannot live in it. However, your lender may allow you to delay mortgage payments for several months after a disaster (although interest may continue to accrue).Some lenders will make loan modifications to allow the missed payments to be added to the loan, thereby lengthening the term of the mortgage.  You need to tell your lender about the disaster and your temporary inability to pay.  If your mortgage is FHA-financed or FHA-insured and you begin to fall behind in your payments because of circumstances beyond your control, you have special rights.  For more information about Illinois law, visit www.illinoislawyerfinder.com.  If you have a legal question, send it to illinoislawcolumn@isba.org.Illinois Law Now is a series of newspaper and internet posts prepared by the Illinois State Bar Association that address legal issues of interest to the public. For additional information about the law, visit http://www.illinoislawyerfinder.com/legal-faqs

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