Foreclosure is the procedure through which the lender in a mortgage takes ownership and/or possession of the property that secured the original loan. This happens when a debtor in Clay County, Missouri has consistently failed to make their payments. When a house is foreclosed, it is usually sold at auction shortly thereafter. This is because banks usually 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 U.S., including Missouri, 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 numerous states, original mortgages (as opposed to refinanced loans) are "non-recourse" loans, meaning that the most the lender can collect is whatever the foreclosed property sells for. The bank cannot go after the debtor for the balance, if the sale nets less than the amount due. You should consult an attorney in Clay County, Missouri to learn the details of the law here. You should also know that this rarely applies to loans that have been refinanced.
How Can I Avoid Foreclosure in Missouri?
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 honest with them. You should keep in mind that banks usually don't want to take your Clay County 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 Clay County, Missouri Attorney Help?
If you are worried about foreclosure, a good Clay County, Missouri 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.