Foreclosure in Prince William County, Virginia is a judicial proceeding which allows a mortgage lender to acquire ownership of the home that was used to secure the mortgage, in the event that the creditor defaults. Foreclosure typically involves a forced sale of the house at auction. Banks typically want to rid themselves of ownership of the home as soon as possible, collect as much money as they can, and then move on.
In all states in the United States, including Virginia, 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 treated as "non-recourse" loans, meaning that, at most, the lender can take possession of the house in the event of foreclosure, even if it is worth less than the amount due. The bank cannot go after the borrower for the remaining balance once it sells the house. You should consult an attorney in Prince William County, Virginia to find out if this is the case here. This typically does not apply if the mortgage has been refinanced.
How Can I Avoid Foreclosure in Virginia?
First, and most importantly, you should not dismiss the issue. Failing to respond to foreclosure calls from your lender will not make an issue go away. You should stay in touch, and be forthright with, your creditor as much as possible. You should keep in mind that banks typically don't want to take your Prince William 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 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 usually 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 might also consider a "short refinance" which allows a part of the debt to be forgiven, and lets you refinance the rest.
How Can A Prince William County, Virginia Attorney Help?
If you are worried about foreclosure, a good Prince William County, Virginia 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.