A recent study estimates that 47% of foreclosed properties are still occupied.
This stat may be surprising to you, but if you really think about it then it starts to make sense.
Banks are in business to lend money. Banks are NOT in business to own homes.
Their business model revolves around loaning people money, mostly in the form of mortgages. But when they have to foreclose on a house… the bank is forced to own the home until they’re able to sell it to get all or most of their money back.
But, what they had found is that when a Myrtle Beach foreclosed house becomes vacant… the house will typically begin to fall into disrepair. Often times the bank would rather have you in the property even after you stop making your payments and the foreclosure process is started because it wards off vandals and keeps the house in good working order.
There’s been a lot of talk in the media about people living for free after foreclosure – and even many stories about banks “abandoning” properties.
In those stories, people stop making house payments for months, sometimes years.
Sounds too good to be true? You’re right.
We all know that banks want their money, and no bank would intentionally give up on collecting their mortgage payments. The only way that you get to live without making any payments is when some major mistakes were made.
Do not count on luck being on your side in this instance. Sure, it’s possible, and it’s happened before. However, it’s not exactly legal to avoid making payments that you owe, and it can get you in serious trouble.
So why are so many foreclosed homes occupied? It’s important to remember that no one wants the house to be vacant. Vacant homes are targets for vandalism, squatters, drug users, prostitution, and other crimes. The banks and especially the neighbors want to avoid this from happening.
Staying in the property can help the bank maintain the value of their investment, so it’s actually in their best interests to keep it occupied. Partly because of the ways that the foreclosure laws are structured in SC, banks may ask you to leave even though they actually want you to stay.
There are a few perfectly legal ways to remain in your home, even after foreclosure.
How To Stay In My Home After Foreclosure In Myrtle Beach
Not all these options are available (depending on your situation and your lenders), and you’ll need some expert advice along the way to help you get through.
1) Wait it out. Even though this is the worst option, it is becoming increasingly common. You certainly shouldn’t run away and abandon your house when the first notice of default shows up, but you should try to take some course of action and be proactive. Remember that the proceedings and the process takes months and sometimes years. It’s not over until it’s over, so don’t give up too early. On the other hand, don’t wait until the sheriff shows up to evict you to start packing up your stuff. This will eventually happen.
2) Go to court. In very rare cases, judges are granting stays and delaying evictions. You may want to try this option if you (and your attorneys) can prove that the bank has neglected a legal requirement during the foreclosure process. During the past few years, a lot of fraudulent behavior at banks has been uncovered – so we may see an increasing trend of using the courts to stop foreclosure. Fighting banks with lawyers is very difficult, expensive and time-consuming, even if you’ve got a perfect case (most people don’t stand a chance). The banks don’t like to lose and will fight the case as hard as possible just to dissuade others from trying to do the same thing.
3) Cash for keys. There are many times when buyers of occupied foreclosure properties spend thousands of dollars on lawyers and other eviction costs, not to mention the additional time it takes to go through the process. A viable option may be to negotiate “cash for keys”. Basically, the buyers pay you to leave. You work out a price and a time frame, and you get some cash to move while leaving the house in good working condition. It’s a bit unconventional and doesn’t sit well with some people, but in certain situations this can be a real win-win for everyone involved. It may sound a little greedy, but this could work out to be the cheapest and easiest solution for everybody. Plus, you can help out the bank and the buyers by not abandoning the house to squatters or vandals before they’re ready to take possession.
4) Rent it back. It may come as a surprise, but some banks are willing to take on previous homeowners as tenants in their property. It won’t last forever, since they’ll want you to agree to vacate the premises as soon as they find someone to purchase the property. In some cases, we can even purchase the property and rent it back to you.
We hope you learned enough about how to stay in your home after foreclosure to set you on the right path. It’s great that you’re being proactive and reading this page and exploring your options. We help homeowners like you to find creative solutions.
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