Q: On September 6, my husband I closed on a villa here in Florida. We love our home, but we have a serious problem.

Just days after the closing, my husband’s company stopped paying for any overtime and put everyone on 40 hours. Now, my husband’s take-home pay is less than half of what it was.

I went for a job interview today but I won’t know until the end of October if I’ll get the job, which would start on November 13th.

Do you think our mortgage company would allow us to defer our first payment until December? It’s due November 1st.

I think it’s worth asking the question, but my husband doubts they’ll help us. We’re scared to death about what might happen.

A: I’m sorry that your financial situation has changed so dramatically since you closed on your property. In order to avoid a catastrophe, you’ve got to get moving. I don’t know your financial situation, but you may want to make that first payment and defer or cancel other expenses to avoid killing your credit score.

Being late on your first payment just means you’ll limit your options going forward (in terms of refinancing the loan) and depress your credit score for up to 7 years.

So, do place a call today to your lender about restructuring your payments.

It never hurts to ask the loan mitigation department for help and see what they will do for you. But make sure that it won’t affect your credit. If it will, make sure you make that first payment.

If the house is unaffordable for you, you have two choices: Bring in more cash or put it on the market and sell it.

If your husband’s overtime doesn’t come back and you can’t figure out a way to replace the income you’ve lost, you will have to sell this home and hope to find another one someday.

However, instead of waiting to find out if you get the job you’ve applied for, you should take any job you can temporarily to make sure you have enough cash coming in to make this first payment. If you get the full-time job, you can move over.

This is a tough time and I’m afraid there are no easy answers.