Foreclosure is the legal process 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 Palm Harbor, Florida debtor has repeatedly failed to make their payments. Foreclosure normally results in the property being sold in an auction. Banks normally 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 United States, including Florida, foreclosure by judicial sale is an option. This allows the sale to be conducted under the supervision of a court, to ensure that the bank makes a good faith effort to get a fair price, and that the proceeds above and beyond the balance of the mortgage (if there are any) go back to the debtor. In some states, original mortgages are treated as "non-recourse" loans, meaning that, at most, the lender can take ownership of the house in the event of foreclosure, even if it is worth less than the amount due. The bank cannot go after the debtor for the remaining balance once it sells the house. You should consult a lawyer in Palm Harbor, Florida to find out if this is the case here. This normally does not apply if the mortgage has been refinanced.
How Can I Avoid Foreclosure in Florida?
First of all, you shouldn't ignore the problem. You should stay in contact with your bank, and be straightforward with them. Ignoring the issue will not make it go away. One should remember that banks typically don't want to take your house in Palm Harbor. 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 straightforward with them about your financial situation, they are likely to make reasonable accommodations to prevent you from defaulting.
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 typically 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. There is also the option of a "short refinance," which forgives a considerable portion of your mortgage debt, and refinances the rest.
How Can A Palm Harbor, Florida Attorney Help?
If you are worried about foreclosure, a good Palm Harbor, Florida 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.