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The Basics of Foreclosure: What Boston Rental Property Investors Need to Know

Foreclosed Boston Home for SaleYou, as an investor, may ask if foreclosed properties are as inexpensive as they appear. Moreover, you can obtain these homes for a small portion of their market value, and several Boston property managers have made considerable profits by renting out or flipping these properties. It is important to learn the key principles of foreclosure before entering the field. This will benefit you in making intelligent judgments when selecting future investment homes and managing your present rentals. Let’s look at what you need to know about foreclosure thoroughly in the paragraphs that follow, from what transpires during the procedure to how it may affect your rental property business.

What is Foreclosure?

If a borrower is behind on their mortgage payments and the lender starts legal action to reclaim the property, foreclosure happens. The majority of the time, borrowers are unable to make their monthly mortgage payments due to monetary issues, a loss of employment, a divorce, a critical sickness, etc. Foreclosures can be caused by a variety of reasons, but they always have the same effect. Following the owner’s failure to make payments, the bank or lender will often take proceedings to foreclose on the loan and reclaim the property as their own.

The Foreclosure Process

It’s crucial to comprehend how the foreclosure procedure functions as a Boston rental property owner or investor so you can make wise choices. Among the most important things to remember are the following:

After a borrower skips many months of payments, the foreclosure procedure usually starts. This notifies the lender of a problem, at which point they may file legal action to reclaim the property.

Phase 1: Pre-Foreclosure

Before beginning the foreclosure process, the lender should go through several actions. For instance, the lender will send a demand letter if the borrower skips two payments. Certain lenders will not engage with the borrower in assisting them to catch up on missed payments, even though the majority will. These offers may be incorporated into the demand letter.

The lender typically delivers a notice of default after 90 days of missed payments. The loan is now routinely forwarded to the lender’s foreclosure division. Some lenders will grant the borrower an additional 30 days to make up for any late payments and have the loan reinstated. If no settlement is done, the lender will commence foreclosure.

Phase 2: Foreclosure

As is customary, state law governs the foreclosure procedure. To finish the foreclosure process, various states have their own set of procedures. All states, for one, have restrictions dictating the notices a lender needs to post, the borrower’s choices for avoiding foreclosure, and the timing and procedure for taking control and selling the property.

Within 22 states, which would include Florida and New York, lenders are ordered to follow a judicial foreclosure practice in which they must file a petition with the courts. If the judge authorizes the lender’s petition to sell the property, the lender may do so. Often the property will be sold at a public auction done by the local sheriff to the highest bidder. For other circumstances, the bank will sell the property by more standard protocols.

The rest of the 28 states, including California, Texas, and Arizona, utilize a kind of nonjudicial foreclosure known as a power of sale. A power of sale is cheaper and quicker than a court foreclosure, but certain legal procedures must be followed. Only when the borrower sues the lender does it usually end up in court.

Phase 3: Sale of Property

The property must then be sold after the lender has taken possession of it to complete the foreclosure procedure. Most banks and lenders don’t want to be property owners. They’d instead seek to recuperate their losses by selling the home for money.

Every lender functions differently. Certain lenders will attempt to quickly sell the property at a sheriff’s auction. On the other hand, the lender can take ownership of the property and add it to an expanding portfolio of foreclosed properties known as real estate owned (REO) if the property doesn’t sell or if the lender decides not to put it up for auction.

On the website of the bank or lender, lists of REO properties are frequently accessible. This can be convenient for investors trying to purchase a house at a discount. In some instances, the lender is determined to sell and can negotiate a price below market value for the property. This, however, is not always the case. As an investor, it is essential to properly investigate the property to decide whether it is indeed a bargain.

How Long Does Foreclosure Take?

The foreclosure timeline varies considerably, particularly among states that need judicial foreclosure and those that don’t. The average time to foreclosure in the U.S. is around 922 days or 2.5 years. Individual states will, of course, have various averages. For comparison, the average time to foreclose in Tennessee is 270 days, whereas the average time in New York is 1,822 days.

The process of foreclosure takes a long time, in part because lenders frequently try to engage with homeowners to prevent it and in part because they have to jump through so many legal hoops. Instances such as lawsuits, downturns in the housing market, and other occurrences can make the procedure more complicated.

In general, it’s crucial to comprehend the basics of foreclosure so you can choose wisely when purchasing and overseeing rental homes. It’s important to understand how the process works and what potential problems may occur whether you’re wanting to rent out foreclosed properties or flip them to make some additional money.

It’s also crucial to have access to a local market expert, such as Real Property Management Boston, who can offer insightful information about any potential properties. Contact us to learn more about the quality services we offer rental property investors like you.

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