Foreclosure is a legal process allowing mortgage lenders to take ownership and/or possession of the debtor's real estate (which was used to secure the loan) in the event of nonpayment in Niagara County, New York. 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 easy way to do this.

In every state, including New York, there is an option to go through foreclosure by a judicial sale, which is a procedure in which a court supervises the sale of the property, and makes sure that the proceeds first go the to the holder of the mortgage, then to anyone else who may have a lien on the property, and finally to the debtor if anything is left. In many 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 borrower for the balance, if the sale nets less than the amount due. You should consult a lawyer in Niagara County, New York to learn the details of the law here. You should also know that this rarely applies to loans which have been refinanced.

How Can I Avoid Foreclosure in New York?

First and foremost, you should not ignore the possibility of foreclosure. Failing to respond to collection calls from your lender will not make the problem go away. As unpleasant as this might 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 Niagara 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 keep 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 generally 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. You could also consider a "short refinance" which allows a chunk of the debt to be forgiven, and lets you refinance the rest.

How Can A Niagara County, New York Attorney Help?

If you are faced with the possibility of foreclosure in Niagara County, New York, an attorney might be able to help. At the very least, he or she can advise you of your legal options.