If you stop making payments on your home, the bank will eventually start what is called a foreclosure procedure. A foreclosure procedure is quite complicated and can take several months if not years to complete. A foreclosure takes away your rights to your home because you cannot or have not made the payments that you owe. However, missing payments is only the first step to the foreclosure. You have between three and six months to catch up on your payments before your lender lets the County know that you have defaulted on your mortgage. This notice of default informs you that you are in danger of forfeiting ownership on your property and that you are in jeopardy of going into foreclosure unless you start to make your payments. After the notice of default has been given by the lender, you have between 30-120 days, depending on where you live, to either make any payments that you owe or continue the foreclosure process. This step is also when a borrower can decide that they want to short sale their home. Finally, if no payments have been made by this time, the house will go into foreclosure and an auction will be held to sell the house that way. At foreclosure auctions, houses are paid for in cash by the highest bidder. If no one buys it at the auction, the lender takes over and it is now owned by the bank.
The reality of it is if you find yourself in foreclosure you have the ability to save your home through either working with a lender through a modification, working out a plan through a bankruptcy Chapter 13, or if you can no longer keep your home, you have the ability to do what is called a short sale. Automatic stay bars anyone from collecting debt from you after you have filed for bankruptcy, which is why in some cases, filing for bankruptcy might be the best way to keep your house.
Juan C. Velasco, Esq. is a trusted attorney who has been serving the New Jersey area for over 25 years. If you are in need of experienced legal counsel, please contact Velasco Law Office and we will be happy to assist you.