Foreclosure is the legal procedure 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 Marin County, 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 forward.
In all states in the U.S., including California, there is an option to go through foreclosure via judicial sale, in which a court supervises the sale, and makes sure that the proceeds first go to the lender, and then to any other entities that may have a lien or other interest in the property (in order of priority), and, finally, to the borrower, if anything is left. In various states, mortgages which have not been refinanced are "non-recourse loans." This means that, in the event of default, the bank can take ownership of the house and sell it; but if the sale price happens to be less than the balance of the mortgage, the lender cannot go after the debtor for the remainder. Because of this, some people have found that their best option is to simply walk away from the home if the mortgage is more than the house is worth. You should talk with a Marin County, California lawyer to see if this state is one of them.
How Can I Avoid Foreclosure in California?
First of all, you shouldn't dismiss the problem. You should stay in contact with your bank, and be honest with them. Ignoring the issue will not make it go away. One should remember that banks generally don't want to take your house in Marin County. They issued your mortgage expecting to earn a profit on the interest. Taking possession of, and selling, your house is a last resort for them. Therefore, if you are honest with them about your financial situation, they are likely to make reasonable accommodations to keep you from defaulting.
If no deal can be worked out, or the mortgage payments have become prohibitive, you may consider a "short sale". While the lender has to consent to it, many will take a moderate loss if it means avoiding foreclosure (which lenders generally treat as a last resort). This allows you to sell the house for whatever price it can fetch on the current market, and hand the proceeds over to the bank. If the sale nets less than the balance, some or all of the deficiency may be forgiven. 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 Marin County, California Attorney Help?
If you are worried about foreclosure, a good Marin County, California real estate attorney may be able to help. A attorney can increase your chances of keeping your home, and help minimize the financial impact if keeping it proves impossible.