Foreclosure in Bellingham, Washington 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 U.S., including Washington, 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 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 Bellingham, Washington 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 Washington?
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. One should remember that banks usually don't want to take your house in Bellingham. 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 forthright with them about your financial situation, they are likely to make reasonable accommodations to keep you from defaulting.
If you can't reach a solution with your lender, there are other options. You can, for example, try a "short sale," which allows you to sell your house for whatever amount you can get, and use the proceeds to pay your mortgage. If the house sells for less than you owe, the bank will receive the proceeds of the sale, and the rest of the debt will be forgiven. You may also try a "short refinance" which allows a piece of the debt to be forgiven, and the rest refinanced. This allows the bank to wash its hands of the matter, while taking a comparatively small loss, and allows the homeowner to keep their home.
How Can A Bellingham, Washington Attorney Help?
If you are faced with the possibility of foreclosure in Bellingham, Washington, an lawyer may be able to help. At the very least, he or she can advise you of your legal options.