Most states in the US have their own legal processes when it comes to how a sheriffs sale can work. If you are facing foreclosure or sheriffs sale, it is a good idea to contact your lender or local attorney to be clear on how the process works in the state of your property. This article will provide some basic material to understand the process, but any specific questions should be directed to a local authority to determine intricacies of sale process.

©Michael Surtees - flickr

©Michael Surtees – flickr

Typically it takes 3-6 missed payments before and mortgage company can initiate foreclosure proceedings. Foreclosure notification usually comes with your borrower statement each monthly, with your mortgage bill. Often times banks will leave a notice on the front door of the property to provide notification. These methods will vary from state to state and from lender to lender. If the missed payments are not brought up to date, or the loan is not paid in full, then the lender will initiate foreclosure proceedings. If you are a homeowner that cannot seem to get caught up, and your lender is not offering any kind of loan modification that makes sense to you, then you may face losing your home and really hurting your credit score for the near future. Given the amount of easy credit available up until recently, there are many homeowners that frankly are not qualified or capable of having a mortgage, and thus might have been better off renting.

Many people, once faced with the reality that they cannot afford to keep their home, will put their property up for sale. But because of all the people out there who are in similar situations, there is a surplus of supply and homes for sale in most regions across the country. This make it that much harder to sell your property with sellers competing to sell property – prices must continue to drop with a surplus of supply and an ever-shrinking market of qualified buyers.

If the property is not able to sell on the open market, often times the home goes through the foreclosure process and is eventually sold at sheriffs sale or auction. Most states require that the property be listed in local newspapers as a foreclosure, which can be quite embarrassing especially in a small town where everyone knows everyone else. Banks do not want to own property, and would prefer to see monthly payments paid to them with interest on the borrowed loan. However, when a bank has taken back a foreclosure property, their last option available is to sell it at sheriffs sale or auction to the highest bidder. If this is the case with your property, then you most likely have already had this affect your credit.

It is becoming harder and harder to get a straight answer from a mortgage company these days. Often times when you call in to request information, you get transferred to different departments and are never dealing with an actual decision maker. This can be very frustrating to deal with, especially when dealing with late payments, household bills and needs of family and children on top of everything else. If you are facing sheriffs sale of your home, chances are good that the loan has been transferred to a local attorneys office. Or you may have to contact the lenders “loss-mitigation department” to find out the status of the loan.

You should be able to find out exactly how much time you can expect to stay in the home before the sheriff comes knocking. Ideally it is best to try and work out a loan modification or sell the property if you cannot afford it, before this happens, but sometimes it is hard to get caught up. Contact your lender today to find out what you can do to stay in your home!

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