Buying A Short Sale or Foreclosure? Why You Should Hire a Lawyer for Help

Owning your own home is a dream that most people share, but making that dream a reality can be difficult. Real estate prices continue to rise, while incomes don’t necessarily keep up, and that makes things challenging. It is natural for those searching for a home to look for a bargain, and there are a lot of them out there with the large number of people who have suffered as a result of the economic downturn. Though short sales and foreclosures can represent tremendous savings for those who don’t have the money to purchase a home at full price, they also carry a significant amount of risk. At Wallace Law, we have extensive experience in assisting potential home buyers considering buying a short sale or foreclosure. There are a lot of important ways that a lawyer can help.

A short sale is the term used when a homeowner sells their house for less than the amount that they owe to the bank and the bank has agreed to take a reduced amount in payment. By contrast, when a home is being sold as part of a foreclosure, the homeowner was unable to meet their mortgage obligations and make their principal and interest payments to the bank holding their loan. The lender seizes the property, evicts the homeowner, and sells the home. There are a few pitfalls that can take place with buying a home being sold on short sale or foreclosure. These include:

  • Hidden problems with the property – In many cases these are a result of the homeowner being unhappy with being forced to leave. They either take out their frustration on the home and purposely damage it or fail to maintain or repair the property as a result of not being able to afford to do so, or no longer caring.
  • Problems with insurance, title or land rights – When homes are owned and sold by banks, the sales are often as is, and done without full disclosure. This can leave potential buyers at risk of purchasing a house for which renovations are disallowed, a home that is uninsurable as a result of being in a flood plain, or that presents other significant ownership problems.
  • Foreclosures and short sales are notorious for having unpredictable timelines. Much of this is a result of the need to get approval from the bank. It can also be difficult to get approved for a loan on a home going through foreclosure or short sale.

Buying a short sale or foreclosure can offer many benefits, but it is important to have an advocate on your side who can protect your interests and help you through the process. The attorneys at Wallace Law have extensive knowledge of the legal issues that short sales and foreclosures represent, as well as experience in dealing with them. We can conduct title searches, provide you with advice regarding negotiating a fair price, review all of your legal documents and provide invaluable advice to protect your interests throughout the transaction. Call us today to learn more about how we can help.