The most common mistake homeowners do is ignoring that they have a problem to deal with. We cannot stretch it enough how the importance of communication with your Lender is primordial!
Stopping foreclosure starts as soon as a borrower fails to make 1 or 2 monthly mortgage payment; The lender may consider a repayment plan at this delinquency step if the borrower financial hardship was temporary. The borrower can also check to refinance the loan at a better rate and terms.
After 90 days or more without payment, the loan default. At this point the lender will not accept any partial payment and will call the loan off by filling a notice of default (NOD). Depending of the State where the property is, it can take more or less between 30 to 60 days to foreclose.
Even after receiving a NOD, a borrower can still negotiate with the lender to have a Loan Modification, a Short Sale, a Forbearance, to surrender voluntarily the title of the property (Deed In Lieu of Foreclosure), get someone to assume the loan or filling Bankruptcy after consulting with an Attorney.
Foreclosure Law differ from State to State. In a non Judicial State, the Lender will schedule a Trustee Sale if no agreement has been reached with the homeowner who defaulted on a loan.