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Be prepared – new books describe foreclosures

By Paul Birkhead
Rowan Public Library
Foreclosures in America are happening in record numbers. The volume of foreclosures in 2007 increased 75 percent over those in 2006 and the most current figures project the totals for 2008 to be even higher.
The greed of banks, the collapse of key real estate markets, a weakening dollar and a shrinking job market have all been blamed for millions of Americans losing their homes. No matter where the fault lies, it doesn’t take long for troubles on Wall Street to become tragedies on Main Street.
If you’re at risk for losing your home to foreclosure, Rowan Public Library has resources to help you. Three books in particular have just arrived that can help you learn about the foreclosure process and give you tips on working with lenders and avoiding common scams.
“Stop Foreclosure Now” is a book written by Lloyd Segal who has experience both as an attorney and as a mortgage banker. His book is billed as “The complete guide to saving your home and your credit.” Inside you will find advice on how to develop a plan to delay or stop the foreclosure process as well as tips on how to negotiate with your lender. Because foreclosure laws are determined on a state-by-state basis, Segal includes a summary of foreclosure laws for all 50 states.
Nolo, a publisher that specializes in do-it-yourself legal books and software, has just released “The Foreclosure Survival Guide: Keep Your House or Walk Away with Money in Your Pocket.” The author, Stephen Elias, is a successful bankruptcy attorney who has helped hundreds of people save their homes. Because of his expertise in the bankruptcy field, Elias is able to give some unique advice on using bankruptcy as a means to keep your house. He also walks you through the methods of determining if your home is worth saving or if it might make more sense to sell it and potentially keep some money in your pocket. Thankfully, the author has a straightforward writing style that can cut through some of the legalese that you will encounter.
“American Foreclosure: Everything U Need to Know about Preventing and Buying” is another guide that does a good job of explaining foreclosure. While some folks may be losing their homes to foreclosure, there are others who are looking to buy foreclosure properties. This book has been written to give advice to those who find themselves in either situation. Included in the guide is a bonus CD-ROM that features ready-to-print real estate forms.
Tough economic times coupled with skyrocketing foreclosure rates have many interested in the foreclosure process. Whether you’re a homeowner struggling to pay your mortgage or an investor looking for some deals on real estate, Rowan Public Library has resources that can help.
Holiday closing: All locations will close at 6 p.m. Dec. 23 and remain closed through Dec. 26. East branch will be closed through Dec. 29.
Computer classes: Headquarters ó Monday, 7 p.m., Introduction to Internet Searching; Thursday, 2:30 p.m., Introduction to Internet Searching. Classes are free. Sessions are about 90 minutes long.
Tuesday Night at the Movies: All movies are at 6:30 p.m., exceptions listed below. Tuesday, “The Way We Were,” directed by Sydney Pollack; Dec. 23, “Blackbeard’s Ghost,” with Suzanne Pleshette, at 3:30 p.m.; Dec. 30, “Silk Stockings,” with Cyd Charisse.
Children’s program: Headquarters ó Dec. 17, 10:30 a.m., Christmas Sugar Plum Storytime.
Displays: Headquarters ó Kwanzaa by Eleanor Qadirah and jewelry by Paul Thompson; South ó Christmas by Tammie Foster; East ó Jr. Poppy Education by AL Unit 112.Literacy: Call the Rowan County Literacy Council at 704-216-8266 for more information on teaching or receiving literacy tutoring for English speakers or for those for whom English is a second language.
Web site: For a listing of all library programs at all library locations, www.rowanpubliclibrary.org.

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