Foreclosure is the legal procedure by which the lender in a mortgage arrangement takes possession of the property (normally a house) that secured the loan. This is done when the Westminster, 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 gather as much money as possible, and move forward.
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 good effort to get a reasonable price at the auction, and that any proceeds above the balance of the mortgage go back to the borrower. 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 Westminster, California lawyer to see if this state is one of them.
How Can I Avoid Foreclosure in California?
First, you should never dismiss the matter. As unpleasant as it seems, it is necessary to stay on top of the issue. Ignoring the problem will never make it go away. You should keep in mind that banks normally don't want to take your Westminster home. They aren't in the real estate business, and expect to make money through interest on the loan, not by selling your house. If you are up-front with them early on, they will probably make a reasonable effort to accommodate your financial system if it will prevent you from defaulting.
If you can't work things out with your lender, there are other avenues. You can try a "short sale," which is when you sell your house for whatever amount you can get for it, and use the proceeds to pay your mortgage. If the house sells for less than you owe, the bank still receives those proceeds, but the remainder of the loan will be forgiven. You may also consider a "short refinance" which allows a portion of the debt to be forgiven, while refinancing the rest, hopefully under better terms.
How Can A Westminster, California Attorney Help?
If you are worried about foreclosure, a good Westminster, California real estate attorney may be able to help. An attorney can increase your chances of keeping your home, and help minimize the financial impact if keeping it proves impossible.