For many homeowners, foreclosure is their worst nightmare. It can be traumatic both to your finances and your family to lose your home out of an inability to make payments. Sometimes though, homeowners, in realizing foreclosure are imminent, will seek to file a foreclosure and cut their losses where they can. You will have to prove your situation is irreconcilable, if you want your foreclosure filing to be accepted. Meet with your financial adviser to confirm that filing for foreclosure is the best option. Much like bankruptcy, foreclosure will cause serious damage to your credit rating, but it may be your only option. Do not file for foreclosure unless all avenues for help have been closed to you. Contact your city or county’s public trustee and ask what is needed to file for a foreclosure. You will have to provide proof of home ownership and evidence of your trust. Your public trustee may have other requirements, such as a letter from an attorney confirming your situation and need. Put together all the required documents, or copies of the documents, and deliver them to your public trustee. You will likely have to pay a foreclosure fee with your submission. Fees vary widely but could be as low as a few hundred dollars. Wait to hear back from your public trustee regarding your foreclosure. Depending on backlog, most foreclosures can be processed within two weeks.
How Do I Redeem Property After Foreclosure?
About half of the states have statutory redemption laws, which mean that when your house goes to foreclosure and sells at an auction, you still have a limited amount of time, anywhere from two months to a year, to pay the foreclosure sale price and redeem your property. The reason some states have redemption a law is so that foreclosures do not sell for unreasonably low prices. If they do, the original owner will be more likely to be able to purchase the home, which is an incentive for the bidders on foreclosed properties to keep their bids up. During the redemption period, the homeowner can stay on the property. File a form with the courthouse indicating that you intend to redeem your property. Provide evidence of ownership, such as your deed. If you lost your deed, you can get a copy from the courthouse. Be prepared to pay not only the amount of the foreclosure sale, but also a rate of interest to the buyer. Wait to be contacted regarding the intent form you submitted. Provide cash or certified funds where instructed, usually to the courthouse or public trustee, on or before the final day of the redemption period. After you pay, the foreclosed sale is annulled and you own the property. You are still subject to any liens and encumbrances on record.
How Can I Find Out How Much Is Owed on a House?
Whether you’re a real estate investor looking for a bargain or curious about how much a current owner paid for a home when they bought it, the process to find the outstanding balance on a home can be accomplished in several ways–from simply asking to examining real estate records.
Ask the Homeowner
The easiest way to determine how much is still owed on a house is to ask the homeowner. Request to see their most current mortgage statement for all mortgages. Be sure to inquire if there is more than one mortgage on the property.
A homeowner may sometimes be hesitant to share financial documents with you. In such case, ask the current homeowner for permission to contact the lender on all mortgages. You can call the lender in advance and ask how permission may be granted and then tell the homeowner what you need to accomplish this.
Review Default Notices
While it varies by county, some county clerk offices have a “default” section on their website. You can easily see if this exists by simply calling the county clerk’s office or by visiting their website. Those that have a page like this will list the property information, date of default and the balances owed on each of the mortgages on the property.
Check the Recorded Deed
Although looking at a recorded deed won’t tell you how much is owed on a house, you may be able to do some basic math and at least figure a ballpark range for the remaining balance. The office of deed recordation, which is often at the courthouse, keeps all recorded deeds. You may also find supporting paperwork for the home’s original sales price. By using an online amortization calculator, you can plug in additional values, even though they are estimates, for the term of the loan and interest rate. This may at least give you a ballpark estimate if your other searches are unproductive.
A Note About Second Mortgages
It is important to know how many mortgages exist on the property if you’re going to go to the trouble of researching the balances due. It’s not uncommon these days for homes to have two mortgages. Be sure to ask for information on all the mortgages, not just the first.
Other Balances Owed
Keep in mind that there may be judgments, liens and other encumbrances on a property. Always review both the tax records (available through the county clerk or treasurer office of the county in question) and information from the lender(s).
Keep the Most Important Papers
Actual contract papers detailing your home purchase and original loan should be kept for the life of the loan. Other loan paperwork, such as refinancing agreements, should be kept for at least three years; some recommend keeping these as long as ten years. This type of paperwork could come in handy if monthly mortgage statements seem inaccurate or if there’s a sudden unexpected change in your monthly interest rate, for instance. Other paperwork, such as paid monthly mortgage loan fees, should only be kept as long as you feel necessary, such as several months, to ensure the payments were credited to your account.
Home loans usually have tax implications and the IRS provides explicit guidelines on what to keep. Individuals are required to produce records proving any income, deductions or credit claimed for at least three years from the date of a return. If you failed to file a tax return in any given year, there is no statue of limitations. In that case the IRS recommends you keep documents related to those records indefinitely. Keep records of any home improvements made as well, as these could come in handy for tax purposes and if you ever decide to sell the property.
The U.S. government recommends that you hang onto any deeds as long as you own the property, but if you’ve paid off your mortgage and the deed to your property has been recorded in land records, the documents can be tossed. That’s because most municipalities have copies of these documents available online. Before discarding these papers, make sure you have a document labeled “release” or “certificate of satisfaction.” You can verify this with the title company that handled your closing.
Step One: Notice Of Default
The first step in the foreclosure process is the issuance of a Notice of Default by the lender, which typically occurs after the homeowner is 30-45 days past due on their mortgage. It will usually be sent to the homeowner by certified mail. The lender will set a period of time for the homeowner to pay the lender the required amount past due and return the loan to good standing.
Step Two: Legal Filing
If the homeowner does not pay off the amount past due by the stated deadline, the lender may elect to proceed with foreclosure. There are generally two types of foreclosures: judicial and non-judicial. In judicial foreclosures, the lender may file a lawsuit in order to obtain a court order to sell the property. This usually happens after 90 days of delinquency. In a non-judicial foreclosure, the process follows the procedures spelled out in the mortgage (or deed of trust) that allows a trustee—the bank or mortgage company—to foreclose on and sell the property.
Step Three: Notice Of Foreclosure Sale
After the required time has elapsed, typically after 120 days without making a payment, the homeowner will be sent a notice of foreclosure sale, which will provide notice of the date by which the premises must be vacated and may include the total amount in arrears as well.
Please Note: At any point during these proceedings, you may be able to keep your home if you pay off the loan and all foreclosure proceeding costs accrued.
The sale of a foreclosed home could involve a public sale held by an auction, where the highest bidder can buy the property. If there are no buyers, the lender may buy the property by submitting a credit bid based on the amount owed on the mortgage. If the lender takes the property, it could be sold in a private sale at a later date. If the homeowner has not vacated the property by the time of the foreclosure sale, an unlawful detainer lawsuit could be filed to evict the homeowner. You may ask for time to move out of the property; however the bank does not have to grant the request and may request that you evacuate the property immediately.
Buyer’s agent agreement
When you choose a real estate agent, you sign a buyer’s agent agreement—a contract between you and the brokerage, stating that the agent represents you in the purchase of your home. This agreement outlines the terms of the relationship with your agent—including who pays the agent’s commission (in most cases, the seller), the length of the agreement (90 to 120 days is standard in most markets), and the terms for terminating the agreement.
Why you should keep it: This contract spells out what services your agent agreed to provide you with—and it can come into play if you have an issue with your agent after the transaction closes.
Every home sale starts with a real estate purchase agreement—a legally binding contract signed by home buyers and sellers that confirms that they agree upon a certain purchase price, closing date, and other terms.
Why you should keep it: The provisions stated in this contract must be followed to the letter. If you or the seller fails to fulfill these duties, there could be legal ramifications.
Addenda, amendments, or riders
These types of documents alter or amend the terms of your purchase contract. For example, if a survey reveals that there’s an encroaching fence built by a neighbor, and you’d like the fence removed, the sales contract has to be formally amended.
Why you should keep them: Addenda, amendments, and riders are often related to home inspections or appraisals, and because they change the original terms of the signed contract, they’re worth holding onto.
For instance, if both parties signed a repair addendum, where the seller agreed to make certain repairs based on the home inspection, you’ll need this addendum if you find issues with the repairs down the road.
Sellers are required by law to disclose certain problems with the home, both present and past, that they’re aware of that could affect its value. While laws vary by state, these disclosures might include lead-based paint, pest infestations, and renovations done without a permit.
Why you should keep them: If major problems crop up with your home after you move in, these disclosures can be the basis for a future lawsuit against the seller. If you lose them, you might have trouble holding the seller accountable in a court of law.
Home inspection report
After your home inspection, your inspector should produce a report with detailed notes on the condition of the home and any potential problems.
Why you should keep it: This document is an extremely detailed list of everything that the home inspector finds, and it typically includes photos of problem areas. By keeping this report, you’ll have a record of any repairs that you may need to make to the property in the future.
Mortgage lenders must provide borrowers with a closing disclosure (also called a CD) at least three business days before settlement. This document spells out things such as your loan term (typically 15 or 30 years), loan type (a fixed-rate or adjustable-rate mortgage), the interest rate, and closing costs, among other financials.
Why you should keep it: Your CD is an itemized list of all the costs associated with closing and your mortgage, and it’s important to have for future reference. It’s also the document you’ll need when you go to file your taxes, since you can take deductions for things such as mortgage points.
Title insurance offers protection against any competing claims to a home. As part of the process, the insurer will run a title search of public records, seeking loose ends such as liens against the property or fraudulent signatures on ownership documents.
Why you should keep it: You’ll need this document in the event another party, such as a previous owner, tries to claim the property. Note that there is separate title insurance to cover lenders versus buyers, and you would do well to get a policy for yourself.
When you take title and become the sole owner of the property, you’ll receive a deed—a legal document that confirms or conveys the ownership rights to the home. “It must be a physical document signed by both the buyer and the seller.”
Typically, the property deed is mailed to you after the title transfer documents are recorded in your county’s public records office.
Why you should keep it: Presenting a property deed is the only way to show someone you legally own the home you’re residing in. Because the deed is sent to you directly, neither your mortgage lender nor title company is required to keep a copy of it.
Foreclosure Lawyer Morgan Utah
When you need a foreclosure lawyer in Morgan Utah, please call Ascent Law LLC for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States
Telephone: (801) 676-5506