It might seem to many people in and around Chicago that fewer homes are going into foreclosure these days. As the economy has improved, many people have been able to keep current on their payments and thus stay out of foreclosure. And while that is good news, it might not tell the whole story.

While the most obvious way to avoid foreclosure is to abide by the terms of one’s mortgage, this is easier said than done. Overwhelmingly, people want to stay current their mortgage payments; it’s just that due to circumstances that are often beyond their control, they can’t. Credit card debt, medical bills or other financial woes might make a house payment — which could also include insurance and association dues, too much to bear.

When people find themselves struggling to keep their heads above water money-wise, it might be time to think about filing for bankruptcy. Debt relief can be a huge weight off of people’s shoulders. However, some people might worry that whatever they have to give up in bankruptcy might not make it worth it to them.

Everyone’s situation is different, of course, but for many people, filing for bankruptcy will allow them to stay in their homes. Once a home falls into foreclosure, the consequences for homeowners can be dire; it’s better to prevent that possibility from becoming reality than to try to battle with a bank that has already taken over a home and is preparing it for sale.

Bankruptcy might be a viable option for many people, and they don’t need to worry about going through it on their own. Experienced bankruptcy attorneys can contribute an experienced point of view to people who are considering this option.

Source: Chicago Tribune, “Chicago foreclosures down 35% from a year ago,” Mary Ellen Podmolik, Feb. 13, 2014