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 Winterset, Iowa debtor has repeatedly failed to make their payments. When a house is foreclosed, it is normally sold at auction shortly thereafter. This is because banks normally want to get rid of the property as soon as possible, even if it means losing some money, and an auction is an simple way to do this.

In all states in the United States, including Iowa, foreclosure by judicial sale is an option. This allows the sale to be done 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 "non-recourse loans," meaning that the lender may only recover ownership of the house in the event of default. If the house is now worth less than the balance of the mortgage, the lender has to take the loss. You should speak with a Winterset, Iowa attorney to see if this state is one of them. However, it is almost always the case that this protection does not apply to loans that have been refinanced.

How Can I Avoid Foreclosure in Iowa?

First and foremost, you should not dismiss the possibility of foreclosure. Failing to respond to collection calls from your lender will not make the problem go away. As unpleasant as this may seem, you should stay in contact with your creditor, and be straightforward with them. It is critical to remember that the bank does not really want your Winterset 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 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 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 may 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 Winterset, Iowa Attorney Help?

If you are facing foreclosure, a good Winterset, Iowa real estate lawyer can help. While keeping your home might not always be possible, an attorney can increase your odds of success, and help you minimize the negative impact if you do end up losing your home.