What Is Foreclosure



Avoid Foreclosure - What happens if my home is foreclosed on?

Avoid Foreclosure

It’s important to know your options and understand all the potential solutions that may be available to help you avoid foreclosure. It’s also important to understand what can happen if you fail to take action and foreclosure becomes unavoidable. The process can be stressful, embarrassing, and it can have long-lasting consequences.

 

For example, foreclosure could result in you:

  • owing the mortgage company the deficiency balance of your mortgage (the deficiency balance is the remaining total mortgage balance after the sale price of the home)
  • lengthening the time you could receive a Fannie Mae mortgage to purchase your next home to at least 7 years

 

Keep in mind, your mortgage company doesn’t want to foreclose on your home. Just like there are consequences for you, the foreclosure process is time-consuming and expensive for them. They want to work with you to resolve the situation. However, some homeowners simply don’t take advantage of the help available and foreclosure becomes the only option.

What is a Foreclosure?

A foreclosure is the legal process where your mortgage company obtains ownership of your home (i.e., repossess the property). A foreclosure occurs when the homeowner has failed to make payments and has defaulted or violated the terms of their mortgage loan.

A foreclosure can usually be avoided—even if you already received a foreclosure notice. However, you must take action as soon as you can.


What are the consequences of a Foreclosure?

  • Eviction from your home—you’ll lose your home and any equity that you may have established
  • Stress and uncertainty of not knowing exactly when you will have to leave your home
  • Damage to your credit—impacting your ability to get new housing, credit, and maybe even potential employment, for many years
  • May owe a deficiency balance after the foreclosure sale
  • Lose any relocation assistance or leasing opportunities that may be available with other options
  • Forfeit ability to get a Fannie Mae mortgage to purchase another home for at least 7 years (Fannie Mae guidelines)

What is the process for a Foreclosure?

There are two main types of foreclosure:

  • Judicial—supervised by a court with formal legal proceedings (civil law suit)
  • Non-judicial—non-court supervised

In both types of foreclosure, the homeowner receives the legal notice of foreclosure, the legal notice is published in the local paper (in most cases), and the home is sold at public auction. (For judicial foreclosures, you’ll be served with legal notice of the pending action, and the court will approve or set the foreclosure date and sale.)

The process and timing of a foreclosure can vary by state laws, and many other factors. However, your mortgage company can begin preparing the default notice/foreclosure proceedings on your home as early as 30 days after you have missed your first payment. That’s why you should take action early to begin working with your mortgage company to resolve your payment problems immediately.

How Do You Avoid Foreclosure?
The most important thing—take action now. You have nothing to lose (and everything to gain) by working with your mortgage company to avoid foreclosure.

If foreclosure is imminent, other options may no longer be available. However, you may still be able to leave your home without having to go through foreclosure. This means you won’t have a foreclosure on your credit history and you may qualify for relocation assistance to ease your transition to new housing.


Source: KnowYourOptions.com by Fannie Mae


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