Foreclosure is the legal process by which the lender in a mortgage arrangement takes possession of the property (usually a house) that secured the loan. This is done when the Downey, California debtor has repeatedly failed to make their payments. Foreclosure often requires the house to be sold at auction. Often, banks want to get rid of the property as soon as they can, in order to collect as much money as possible, and move on.
In all states in the U.S., including California, there is an option to go through foreclosure via judicial sale, in which a court oversees the sale, and makes sure that the proceeds first go to the lender, and then to any other entities that might have a lien or other interest in the property (in order of priority), and, finally, to the borrower, if anything is left. In some states, original mortgages are "non-recourse loans," meaning that the lender can only recover ownership of the house in the event of default. If the house is now worth less than the balance of the mortgage, the lender has to take the loss. You should speak with a Downey, California lawyer to see if this state is one of them. However, it is almost always the case that this protection does not apply to loans which have been refinanced.
How Can I Avoid Foreclosure in California?
First, and most importantly, you should not ignore the issue. Failing to respond to foreclosure calls from your lender will not make a problem go away. You should stay in touch, and be honest with, your creditor as much as possible. You should remember that banks in Downey don't want your house. While the foreclosure process can be devastating for the homeowner, it's no walk in the park for the bank, either. They expected to make a profit through interest on the loan paid over time, and foreclosure is a last resort, allowing them to cut their losses and move on. If you are honest with them, lenders will usually try to accommodate your changed financial situation, to avoid a default on your part, and the necessity of foreclosing on their part.
If you believe that foreclosure is imminent, there are some other options. For example, you might be able to engage in a "short sale," which sometimes allows you to sell your house for whatever amount you can get, give the proceeds to the lender, and walk away free of your mortgage debt, even if the sale netted less than the balance of the mortgage. There is also the option of a "short refinance," which forgives a significant portion of your mortgage debt, and refinances the rest.
How Can A Downey, California Attorney Help?
If you are worried about foreclosure, a good Downey, California real estate lawyer might be able to help. A lawyer can increase your chances of keeping your home, and help minimize the financial impact if keeping it proves impossible.