Posted on Friday, November 12, 2010
Of course, you know the ax is going to fall sooner or later. You have fallen behind in your mortgage payments for whatever reason. You have been getting a lot of calls from your lender. Probably, you donâ€™t even bother answering those calls anymore.
You have nothing new to tell them that you havenâ€™t told them before. You got laid off at work, your company closed shop and moved to China or Mexico, you were sick, whatever your hardship story happens to be, nothing has changed. You are still laid off, looking for work, recovering from your illness, applying for social security disability, whatever.
In your mind you are facing the dark unknown, the uncertain future. You feel the unsettling fear in your gut building week by week. You start obsessing with thoughts that wonâ€™t stop cycling through your mind, even when you try to sleep. You are worried sick, literally. Your immune system is compromised, you always feel tired, you catch colds easily; maybe you have aches and pains where you did not before.
If you have a spouse, he or she can be an additional source of stress and anxiety because you are playing the â€œblame gameâ€ blaming the other person for â€œbuying more house than we could affordâ€ or for losing a job or for oneâ€™s inability, due to health reasons, for not working a second full time job. Going through foreclosure in a marriage or partner relationship can be worse than going it alone.
Your kids are embarrassed at school not wanting their friends to know their parents are about to lose their home.
And last but not least, there are your pets; your beloved dog(s) or cat(s) that you are finding it harder to afford to feed and care for. Of course you know you canâ€™t take into that apartment you may have to move into, or worse if you are forced to go to a homeless shelter, you know they donâ€™t allow pets. You also know if you have to abandon your pets to a pet shelter, they may be euthanized if they are not adopted.
In sum, your life is coming apart at the seams. Dealing with the huge emotional and physical stress of foreclosure requires you to seek spiritual and psychological strength from as many sources as possible.
There is an old saying that my father, who went through WWII, used to say, â€œThere are no atheists in foxholes!â€
My father never explained the meaning of his little saying. He left it up to me to interpret.
Now that I am in foreclosure, I know what he meant. Foreclosure is right up there with the most stressful events that can happen in your life, along with war, terminal illness, death, etc. However, foreclosure in itself is not as serious as the other aforementioned tragedies.
Foreclosure is not fatal! You can make it through foreclosure, even defend against and prevent foreclosure if you have the proper mindset and knowledge combined with action!
Here is what is going to happen in foreclosure:
1. The lender, using their collection attorney, sends you a â€œNotice of Default,â€ warning that you are behind in your payments.-this will come from a lawyerâ€™s office in the form of a collection notice letter. It is a notice of default demanding payment.
This is the very first step in the foreclosure process. You have not been sued yet. This is the forbearance phase. You can probably arrange with your lender to make up your missed payments, perhaps spreading them out over a 6 month period in addition to making your regular scheduled payments. For a complete list of Foreclosure Terminology you can go to http://www.hopeconnection.info/opn
Of course, if you have no income or insufficient income at the moment, that will be hard if not impossible to due. It all depends upon your circumstance.
2. If you do not cure the default, your lenderâ€™s collection lawyer will file foreclosure law-suit in a superior or district court. You should receive a â€œsummonsâ€ in the mail or delivered personally to your residence.
The summons is noticing you of you lenderâ€™s intent to foreclose on your note and mortgage. This is the first step in the legal process of getting a summary judgment, then proceeding to sell your property at a Sheriffâ€™s sale or court-auction to recover the amount owed to the lender. If you do nothing, but stand in the middle of the road in the dark like a deer in the headlights of an on rushing car, the end game will be:
You will be evicted and your home auctioned, making you and
I want to refer back to the above referenced â€œsummonsâ€ in the above paragraph. This is where a lot of lawyers ply their â€œdirty tricksâ€ denying you your legal rights. You never get a summons; you are never given legal notice that you are in foreclosure, that there is a pending law suit, etc. This happens quite frequently because people donâ€™t know their rights. Now, if you know your rights, you would know that you, the borrower and homeowner are supposed to get a copy of the â€œsummonsâ€ either by certified mail or by personal service by a process server, usually a deputy sheriff.
In a great many cases, people never get the notice and never even know they are being sued until itâ€™s too late. Do you suppose your lenderâ€™s collection attorney did that on purpose to â€œfast trackâ€ your foreclosure through the court system?
3. Your summons will tell you how many days you have after the court filing date of the law suit, not the date you received it, to answer the summons. Usually its 30 days, but check your particular stateâ€™s rules to make sure it is not 20 days. This rule determines how many days you as the defendant have to file your response or answer, indicating you will contest the foreclosure.
If you can afford to hire a competent lawyer this is where you want to do so if you do not want to fight your foreclosure yourself. A word to the wise, you must assert or reserve your rights, asserting every possible defense there is at this time. If you donâ€™t raise the defense NOW (in your response or answer to summons) you will forever lose your right to use that defense later on in court.
You can do this yourself if you cannot afford a lawyer!
BEWARE: You need to answer the summons or complaint against you, even if you are still trying to settle with the lender on a loan modification. Collection lawyers are notorious for continuing the legal foreclosure process while you are either negotiating a private loan mod or in the federal HAMP program. The feds made a hard and fast rule that the foreclosure process must stop while you are in the HAMP program.
However, in my own case, my lenderâ€™s lawyers ignored the law and tried to get a summary judgment against me. Knowing the law and knowing my rights, I was able to prevent that from happening. You can too!
You donâ€™t need to pay thousands of dollars for a lawyer or someone else to do your loan modificationâ€¦you can do it yourself! If you do not have the money to hire a competent attorney, you have no other choice than to fight the battle yourself. You can do it!
4. A â€œsummary judgment hearingâ€ can be set by the court where you are expected to show up. There is not always a hearing date set, its up to the court. Quite often the court, if it doesnâ€™t get a response from you, the defendant within the specified time limits, grants the lenderâ€™s collection attorney a summary judgment.
You can fight a summary judgment and reverse it.
Again, I did it and I have all my paperwork to share with you.
I you got a summary judgment against you, you may not know it until you get a postcard or letter from the Sheriffâ€™s department noticing you of the public sale or auction of your home on such-and-such a date. But, all hope is not lost! As I said before, I reversed my own summary judgment foreclosure and pending Sheriff sale-auction of my home!
To summarize so far: Unless steps are taken by you to STOP AND STALL THE LEGAL PROCESS, the foreclosure sale OF YOUR HOME will likely be scheduled within 30 days or less (depending upon which state you live in-whether itâ€™s a judicial or non-judicial state).
In other words, if you refuse to do anything at all, out of fear or ignorance, if you do not have the will or intelligence or the mindset to FIGHT FOR YOUR HOMEâ€¦you are a â€œsheepleâ€ willing to be lead to your own slaughter, and I have no sympathy for you whatsoever!â€¦better start packing!
I know that sounds harsh and cruel, but itâ€™s the truth. It doesnâ€™t take very much knowledge or effort to throw a monkey-wrench in the gears of the legal system!
On the other hand, I have great respect for anyone who has faith, is willing to arm his or her self with knowledge and is willing to FIGHT! Real Americans are supposed to have a fighting spirit! Reach deep down inside yourself and find your fighting spirit! I believe God pours favor and grace on those who fight evil. Make no mistake, I believe this is an evil thing that is happening to homeowners!
When I began my battle to save my home almost three years ago, my attitude and mindset was, â€œI may not win, and the devil may take my home, but by God, not without a fight! I am not giving up my home without a fight, never!
With God on my side, I am never giving up!
5. If the court decides in favor of the plaintiff, and your home is up for public sale or auction, and your lender is the successful bidder at the foreclosure sale, the lender takes certificate of title ownership of the property, usually with the intent to resell it. In a non-judicial state, the court may just deed your home to your lender at the time of the courtâ€™s decision in favor of the plaintiff.
It is possible before there is even a judgment that you may give your property back if you have made the decision to leave and move on. The lender can take ownership either through an agreement with you called a deed in lieu of
If you have made the decision to leave your property a â€œdeed in lieu of foreclosureâ€ is a better alternative than going through the foreclosure process. You will most likely need to hire an attorney to make sure everything is done properly. When you do a deed in lieu you may not have to move out immediately because of the sheer volume of repossessed homes being processed.
I know one woman who lived in her foreclosed home for a year after a summary judgment against her! The bank lost her paperwork and didnâ€™t even know her home had been successfully foreclosed!
If you are foreclosed upon, you donâ€™t necessarily have to move out like I said above. You lender may have a â€œkeys for cashâ€ where they give you a little money for handing over the keys to your â€œintact and undamaged propertyâ€.
In other words, they donâ€™t want to get a home that has been stripped of windows, doors, cabinets, fixtures and cement poured down the toilets!
Foreclosed â€œhouse strippingâ€ has become a huge problem for lenders. Disgruntled former homeowners have a â€œmoving out saleâ€ to small contractors. Often they are able to make several thousand dollars selling off everything and anything that can be taken down and taken away. Even if the former homeowner leaves the house intact, neighborhood â€œhouse strippersâ€ watch for newly abandoned houses, going in at night to take everything they can to resell cheaply on the black market.
To sum up the final step in the foreclosure process after a judgment has been given to the plaintiff (your bank), the deeding of your property to your bank, either by the foreclosure judge or by the clerkâ€™s or sheriffâ€™s sale of your property is pretty much a done deal. Unless you have the money to hire an attorney after a deed or sale to your bank, you will lose your ownership rights to your property. Sometimes it is possible to sue to regain your property, but
this you canâ€™t do yourself, you must hire a competent attorney and it will be expensive!
BOTTOM LINE ISâ€¦donâ€™t wait, arm yourself now with knowledge and be able and willing to take action by fighting. Develop the proper fighting attitude and mentality. You must never give up your home without a fight! Have hope, faith and courage, seeing yourself as a modern day David who can slay Goliath!
You can win! go to The HopeConnection at http://www.hopeconnection.info/open where you will find a free membership to The Foreclosure Forum, which is where you will find the hope to sustain you and the education onto how to save your home from foreclosure.
Jack Straw is the author of two books, concerning his saving his home from foreclosure, and the founder of the HopeConnection and The Foreclosure Forum which can be found at [url]http://www.hopeconnection.info/open
where you will find free foreclosure help and the tools that will enable you to stop the banks and their lawyers "dead in their tracks".
This article is free for republishing
Printed From: By: JackStraw | Posted: 28th April 2010
The Anatomy and Psychology of The Foreclosure Process