A Greenwood Township couple scheduled to have their home sold at sheriff sale today has been given a two-month reprieve.

The home of Rhonda and Ed Schell was to have been sold after Option One, a financial firm, filed for foreclosure after the couple couldn’t make their mortgage payments. Those payments were increased last year when variable interest rates on their account were increased.

However, Option One has contacted the couple’s attorney, John Nagurney, after reading of the their plight in a Tribune news story published Sunday. Nagurney said Option One has a clipping service that collects stories from numerous publications to show to clients. The clipping was sent to the company.

Upon receiving the story, Nagurney said, Option One officials notified him and asked for copies of all letters sent to their company’s attorney. Nagurney said company officials told him they had no copies of any correspondence with the law firm.

After further review, the company delayed the sale for 60 days, meaning the Schell family’s home won’t be back on the sheriff sale list for at least two more months.

The Schells had signed mortgage papers for monthly payments of $519 with a variable interest rate. However, the couple was told that if they made their payments on time for two years, the variable interest rate would be converted to a fixed interest rate.

Although their payments were made on time, the couple reported in Sunday’s story, the company didn’t change the account to a fixed rate.

Instead, the payments went to up, to $848. Despite being assured by company officials that they were working to resolve the issue, six months later the payments went up again, to $1,121 — an amount the couple couldn’t pay. The family includes five children, two of whom are in college.

In March, the couple declared bankruptcy and kept trying to resolve the issue with Option One. When it still couldn’t be settled, Option One filed foreclosure papers that could result in the couple losing their home.

One issue that Nagurney has raised about the property is that the septic system is connected to a neighbor’s leach bed with an unrecorded lease. He said the lease isn’t transferable to a new owner and, should Option One take the property, it wouldn’t be able to be sold with no septic system.

Nagurney said he has faxed copies of all correspondence to Option One.

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