You are here: Home Programs Harlem Stakeholders Harlem Homeowners

Harlem Homeowners

E-mail Print
Article Index
Harlem Homeowners
Foreclosure Timeline Information
Tax Exemption and Reduction Programs
All Pages

Equity Preservation: WHGA Harlem Homeowners Program

WHGA targets senior and low income 1-3 family homeowners facing foreclosure, or whose homes are at risk due to mortgage default, predatory loans, and tax arrearages.

Equity Preservation counseling will include mortgage and tax lien foreclosure intervention and prevention, estate planning, and insurance counseling; Physical Re- Stabilization counseling will consist of home repair with a focus on curing building code violations, poorly maintained rental units and major systems such as roof, plumbing, electrical and heating systems as well as energy and water conservation; and Tenant Management counseling will assess the owner’s relationship with the tenant, provide intervention and legal service as needed, and ensure that a valid lease and rent collection process is in place. In the event that a tenant is not in place, WHGA will assist the homeowner in seeking viable tenants. Online Foreclosure Prevention Resources from the New York State Attorney General Office.

Eligible property owners with low income tenants can receive assistance in applying for rehabilitation loans subsidies and tax abatement programs. These publicly funded programs typically assist building owners that offer affordable rents to low income households. Local landlords and homeowners can obtain more information at



Foreclosure Process Timeline

The foreclosure process in New York currently takes approximately 445 days (15 months) from the date of the first missed payment to the sale of the home.

Day 1-15:  A mortgage payment is missed.

Day 16-30:  A late charge is assessed on payment.  The loan servicer (the company that processes your mortgage payments) will send you a notice or otherwise attempt to contact you. 

Day 30-60+: If you reside in the home for which you have the mortgage, the lender or loan servicer must send you a pre-foreclosure notice at least 90 days before commencing foreclosure.  This 90-day window gives you the opportunity to try and work with your lender to find an alternative to foreclosure.  The notice must contain the amount you must pay to bring the loan current.  It also must contain the names and telephone numbers of at least five government approved not-for-profit counseling agencies serving the region where you reside.  These agencies provide free services to you, the homeowner, and you should contact them promptly. It is helpful to have proof of income such as your two most recent pay stubs and most recent tax return when you contact them.

Day 45-60:  The loan servicer will send a "demand" or "breach" letter which states that the mortgage terms have been violated.  You will be given 30 days to pay the delinquent amount and the late charge.

Day 90: The servicer will begin the process of bringing a legal action for foreclosure.  This may include referring the loan to its foreclosure department, hiring an attorney to initiate foreclosure proceedings, recording a formal notice of foreclosure or lis pendens with the court and serving you with notice of the action through a summons and complaint.  These proceedings can take 7-9 months.

 Day 90 – 445:  Foreclosure Proceedings: Once a summons and complaint has been served on you and the lender files proof of service with the court, the court is required to schedule a settlement conference within 60 days.  This is an opportunity to meet face to face with your lender or lender's representative to reach a resolution of the case.  It is in your interest to meet with a free housing counselor, or an attorney, prior to the conference.  You should bring proof of income, such as your two most recent pay stubs and most recent tax return to the conference. 

You will also have to respond to the summons and complaint.  If you do not respond, the court can rule against you and schedule a foreclosure sale.  If you do respond, the court will rule on whether a foreclosure can occur based on the evidence presented.  If the court rules against you (the borrower), a foreclosure sale is scheduled. 

The sale usually occurs at least 4 months after the court ruling.  A notice of sale is published in a general circulation newspaper once a week for at least 4 weeks prior to the sale.

The foreclosure process in New York currently takes approximately 445 days (15 months) from the date of the first missed payment to the sale of the home.

Foreclosure sales in New York are by public auction, usually at a county courthouse.  The home is sold to the highest bidder and anyone, including the lender, may bid.  Once payment is made and the sale is complete, the winning bidder takes ownership of the property.

Once the sale is complete, you have lost your home.


For assistance with foreclosure proceedings contact WHGA at 212-862-1399 for free one on one counseling with a HUD- approved counselor.

West Harlem Group Assistance, Inc.
1652 Amsterdam Avenue
New York, NY  10031

OR Contact

New York State  Attorney General
Consumer Helpline: 1-800-771-7755

 NYC Homeowner Tax Exemption Programs

Disabled/ Senior Citizens Homeowners' Exemption (SCHE/DHE)
DHE/ SCHE is granted to owners of 1-, 2-, and 3-family houses, condominiums, or cooperative apartments who meet age or disability status, income and residency requirements.

Clergy Exemption
A clergy exemption is available for one property owned by a clergy member.

Crime Victim and Good Samaritan Exemption
The Crime Victim and Good Samaritan Exemption provides property tax exemption benefits for people who suffer a disability as a result of a crime.

Veteran Exemption
The Veteran’s Exemption can be applied to  Class 1, Class 2 and Class 4 properties. A qualified veteran is one who served in the armed forces during a period of conflict.

 Military Request for Relief From Lien Sale and Other Issues
Active military personnel may request relief from the Lien Sale, Tax Warrants, Environmental Control Board judgments, and parking judgments.



Jan 2012