The expiration of the foreclosure moratorium brings the real estate market into uncharted territory. Black Knight, an analytics firm, reported a 700% increase in foreclosures in January 2022 compared to the previous year.
With rising commodity prices and increasing interest rates, homeowners again face the possibility of defaulting on a mortgage. If “zombie titles” become a reality, Florida residents should be aware of the struggles the situation can bring and how to minimize them.
Confusion creates complications
A lending institution may begin foreclosure proceedings and fail to follow through. Some homeowners leave the house at the commencement of the eviction process, assuming they have no recourse. However, if the effort to make the dwelling profitable is too large of an investment for the lender, the company may stop the foreclosure action. The title then remains with the homeowner.
Challenges arise if the homeowner is not notified of the incomplete foreclosure. For example, the owner is still liable for taxes since the residence remains in their name. The empty home likely falls into disrepair, bringing other fines or penalties. Fraudsters may take advantage of the misunderstanding by pretending to be the new owner and trying to sell or secure another loan on the property.
Ways homeowners can minimize difficulties
Though foreclosure proceedings are stressful, residents do well to remain in the home until completing the process. The titleholder may avert fraud and penalties by maintaining and securing the property. Instead of giving up the residence at a notice of eviction, homeowners can pursue tactics to negotiate and possibly keep their homes.
Homeowners have options when facing foreclosure. Careful attention and guidance throughout the process can help lessen the challenges.