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 Fort Lauderdale, Florida debtor has repeatedly failed to make their payments. Foreclosure typically results in the property being sold in an auction. Banks typically want to get rid of the property as soon as possible, even if it means taking a financial hit, and an auction is the easiest way to do this.
In all states in the U.S., including Florida, 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 many 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 borrower 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 Fort Lauderdale, Florida attorney to see if this state is one of them.
How Can I Avoid Foreclosure in Florida?
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 essential to remember that the bank does not really want your Fort Lauderdale house - they expected to make a profit through the interest on your loan, and that's what they'd prefer to do. Accordingly, they will probably make reasonable accommodations to your financial situation if it means that you will be able to make some form of payment to them.
If you can't work anything out with your lender, or have become completely unable to make any mortgage payments, a "short sale" might be a good option. This allows you to sell your house for whatever price it can get, and hand the proceeds over to the lender. If the sale price is less than the balance of the loan, the rest of the debt might be forgiven. You might 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 Fort Lauderdale, Florida Attorney Help?
If you think foreclosure is imminent, a good Fort Lauderdale, Florida attorney might be your best hope for staving it off. Even if keeping the house proves impossible, a good lawyer can minimize the financial effects.