Foreclosure is the legal process by which the lender in a mortgage arrangement takes possession of the property (typically a house) that secured the loan. This is done when the Napa 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 make as much money as possible, and move on.
In all states in the U.S., including California, foreclosure by judicial sale is allowed. Under this system, the sale is overseen by a court of law, to ensure that the bank makes a reasonable effort to get a decent price at the auction, and that any proceeds above the balance of the mortgage go back to the borrower. In many states, original mortgages are considered non-recourse loans, meaning that if the house is foreclosed and sold for less than the debtor owes, the bank cannot go after the debtor for the remainder. You should consult with an attorney in Napa County, California to see if this is the case. However, this typically doesn't apply if the mortgage has been refinanced.
How Can I Avoid Foreclosure in California?
First, you should never ignore the matter. As unpleasant as it seems, it is essential to stay on top of the issue. Ignoring the problem will never make it go away. It is necessary to remember that banks don't really want to own homes in Napa County. In issuing a mortgage, they expect to make a profit through interest on the loan, and they'd prefer to continue collecting from you. Therefore, they're likely to make reasonable accommodations to your financial situation if it will enable you to keep paying them in the long run.
If no deal can be worked out, or the mortgage payments have become prohibitive, you might 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 usually 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 might be forgiven. You might also try a "short refinance" which allows a piece of the debt to be forgiven, and the rest refinanced. This allows the bank to wash its hands of the matter, while taking a relatively small loss, and allows the homeowner to keep their home.
How Can A Napa County, California Attorney Help?
If you are facing foreclosure, a good Napa County, California real estate attorney can help. While keeping your home might not always be possible, a lawyer can increase your odds of success, and help you minimize the negative impact if you do end up losing your home.