Short Sales & Deeds in Lieu of Foreclosure
The foreclosure defense attorneys at Ferikes & Bleynat are focused on defending you and the ownership of your home. We specialize in the area of foreclosure defense, from loan modifications to short sales and predatory lending litigation matters. Our attorneys provide a full spectrum of services relating to all foreclosure issues.
The term “underwater mortgage” describes the situation where a homeowner owes more money than the property is worth on the current real estate market. In such instances, selling the home would not resolve the financial burden. The homeowner would still owe money to the lender to pay off the balance of the mortgage after the sale of the home. If you find yourself in this situation, you are not alone as many people have experienced similar situations. Fortunately for most homeowners, there is a solution to an “underwater mortgage.” It is known as a short sale.
In a short sale, the homeowner’s foreclosure defense attorney negotiates with the bank for permission to sell the home at the highest market price and, in turn, the bank agrees to waive the remaining deficiency. Sometimes this can be accomplished without legal representation. However, success in carrying out a short sale depends on taking action as early as possible, since the process can be arduous, and banks can be unresponsive, causing delay to their advantage. For this reason, we recommend that you seek experienced legal counsel immediately.
A short sale will have a negative impact on your credit score, but it is considered to be less of an impact than a foreclosure. Many lenders will recognize that you took responsibility for the situation and attempted to find a solution rather than letting the home go into foreclosure. It is always in your best interest, if possible, to avoid the serious consequences of a foreclosure. If a short sale does not help with your situation, there are other options to consider.
Deeds in Lieu of Foreclosure
A deed in lieu of foreclosure is the process of when a homeowner transfers the deed of their home to the lender, without the legal process of a foreclosure. Eventually, the Lender will sell the home, usually at a loss, and you will be responsible for the remaining balance unless there was a previous agreement with the Lender (in writing) to “forgive” the remaining debt. In this way, a deed in lieu of foreclosure is similar to a short sale.
If the Lender agreed to forgive the balance of the debt, you need to be aware that there are tax ramifications for such a transaction. The bank is required to report the forgiven debt to the IRS, and if the debt totals more than $600.00, it is included in your gross income and taxed accordingly. If you are considering agreeing with your lender regarding debt forgiveness, we firmly recommend that you consult legal counsel to discuss the strategy of the transaction. The attorneys at Ferikes & Bleynat are well versed in Foreclosure law and will provide you with the information necessary to make a sound, educated decision.
Since the fall of the economy in 2008, many homeowners found themselves in financial distress. Across the nation, homes purchased from the turn of the century to the summer 2008 economic crisis, on average lost 30% of their value, almost overnight. Other homeowners that were in the process of paying off their homes lost equity and families relying upon that equity for retirement lost lifelong investments.
By working outside the box, Ferikes & Bleynat help their clients abate foreclosure and better manage their finances by assisting in the process of evaluating and applying for any number of federal programs that may apply to you. We are an Asheville foreclosure defense and loss mitigation firm that assists home and property owners throughout Western North Carolina to maintain their home, find alternate resolutions to foreclosure, and help mitigate the loss when confronted with expensive litigation. If you are a Western North Carolina property owner in crisis, call Ferikes & Bleynat to learn about your options.