Building Lasting Relationships.

Foreclosure Defense For Sarasota-Area Homeowners

The biggest mistake you can make when your lender threatens you with foreclosure or serves you with papers is to do nothing.

If you face foreclosure, we can help you by defending the action brought by your lender and by discussing the possible countersuits that may be pursued under the federal Truth in Lending Act (TILA), the federal Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), and under the federal and Florida Fair Debt Collection Practices laws. TILA and RESPA both contain provisions regarding the documentation of your mortgage loans, and violations of these laws on the part of your lender may entitle you to damages, whether or not you are currently in foreclosure.

We can review your loan documents from your original closing and any subsequent refinancing carefully, and we can also review the calculations on your mortgage accounts to determine if the payments you made were properly applied.

If the lender or servicer has misapplied your payments or cannot prove the chain of ownership of your note and mortgage, we can raise challenges to their foreclosure action.

Being proactive with help from qualified legal counsel can lead to a settlement with your lender or just allow you to stay in your home longer without making mortgage payments while you determine your best options.

Short Sale

A short sale is the sale of a home by the homeowner for less money than is owed on the mortgage or mortgages. The term short sale refers to the short payoff that the lender agrees to accept for the release of its lien on the property and for a full settlement of debt. The homeowner seller does not receive any funds from closing, and closing costs such as real estate commissions, document stamps, transfer taxes and title insurance premiums are netted from the purchase price. The lender must approve the purchase price as well as the net figure it is to receive upon closing.

The homeowner must submit the short sale offer as well as documentation of the homeowner’s hardship to the mortgage lender or bank. The homeowner must also submit financial information to begin the process to approve the short sale.

Once the homeowner has provided the entire short sale package, the lender must decide whether to take a loss or write-off the mortgage. If the bank approves the short payoff of the mortgage, the home can be sold for the lower price, the mortgage lien is released and the foreclosure process stops.

Most short sales are done on properties in with mortgages that are in default. Default usually occurs after three consecutive payments have not been fulfilled. In addition, the homeowner usually has negative equity or no equity in the home.

Homeowner Benefits Of A Short Sale

A short sale relieves the stress of foreclosure. A short sale also gives homeowners a mitigation tool by eliminating a large mortgage payment and giving them the financial opportunity to move on with their lives.

The common saying is true: Banks don’t want to own real estate; they simply want to lend money. Foreclosure is a long and expensive process. Banks would generally prefer to avoid it.

Will A Short Sale Save My Credit?

Yes and no. A short sale is often only available once the homeowner has defaulted on a mortgage payment. This default is reported to credit bureaus, which damages your credit. However, your situation will get much worse if you allow the foreclosure to continue and do not pursue a short sale of the property. If you can complete the short sale prior to the foreclosure, then you can prevent further damage to your credit. Note that while a short sale is pending, the lienholders are not prohibited in any way from continuing to pursue foreclosure on the property or judgments against you, and many will because of the potential that the short sale could fall through.

Contact Us To Discuss Foreclosures Or Short Sales

At the Riddell Law Group, we can help you through the foreclosure or short sale process. Contact us or call us at 941-366-1300. We have offices in Sarasota, Lakewood Ranch, and Venice, Florida.