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Florida Loan Modification
The commercial and residential real estate markets are going through a period of transition and many property owners are looking to refinance their properties. This may be because interest rates have come down, because rental rates are not as stable as in the past or because the real estate market is saturated with too much investment property as a result of the boom years. For all of these reasons and others, many property owners are attempting to refinance. Some of these property owners may also be facing foreclosure and may need to refinance to keep their property.
There are many aspects to loan modifications or refinancing and there is a slight difference between a loan modification and refinancing. A loan modification seeks to modify or change the terms of your current loan. Refinancing can occur by changing lenders, and using the money from the new lender to pay off the old loan.
The aspects of refinancing or a loan modification can include: applying for the modification, deciding upon or negotiating the terms and costs of the modification, reviewing the loan modification documents to insure they comply with the financing terms you agreed upon, closing on the loan modification including issuing mortgagee title insurance to the lender, satisfying the prior mortgage and recording the new mortgage.
The commercial loan modification process can be more complex than a residential refinancing, since often tenants and leases are involved, or ownership interests may be more complex.
The DeWitt Law Firm can assist you with each of the various aspects of the refinancing process. Whether you are refinancing a commercial or residential property, our attorneys have the experience to help you with this often complex and confusing process.
Florida is a judicial foreclosure state, which means that all foreclosures must be processed through the court system.
Notice of Default – This is a written notice from the lender to the mortgage holder. It must contain specific information in order for the lender to proceed with the foreclosure lawsuit. If the lender fails to include the required default language, the foreclosure lawsuit, once it is filed, may be dismissed. If a borrower receives a Notice of Default and does not cure the default; the lender may accelerate the loan and file a lawsuit to foreclose on the mortgage.
Foreclosure Complaint – Once a borrower receives a Complaint, they only have 20 days to respond or a default may be entered against him or her. The Foreclosure Complaint must plead standing, jurisdiction, that the proper notice requirement have been met, and the amount owed. Additionally, the Foreclosure complaint must include a verification clause that is signed by an individual who has actual knowledge regarding your loan.
If you have received a foreclosure Complaint, it is imperative that you respond within 20 days. Failure to do so may result in a default judgment and the bank may be allowed to foreclose on the property.
How long is the average foreclosure process?
The timeframe for a foreclosure action varies dramatically and is difficult to estimate.
Am I required to have an attorney during a foreclosure?
You are not required to hire an attorney to defend a foreclosure action. However, it is advised that once you are served with a foreclosure complaint, you have an experienced foreclosure attorney review your paperwork within 20 days. An attorney’s role in the foreclosure process is a vital one. They will appear on your behalf and defend you throughout the Court proceedings. Additionally, an attorney may be able to work with your lender to determine if there are other options besides foreclosure.
What should I expect from an experienced foreclosure attorney?
From an experienced foreclosure attorney, you can expect:
An understanding of the available defenses available and experience in handling real estate litigation. Many attorneys treat foreclosure cases as if they are not litigation. This is improper. A foreclosure case is litigation and any attorney handling these types of cases should have extensive experience in handling real estate litigation.
A detailed examination of the terms and conditions in your purchase agreement, mortgage, and other documents from your lender.
An understanding of your side of the story: your financial situation, your objectives and your current and future interests in the property.
A detailed analysis of your failure to make the payments. This can include if you recently lost your job, substantial loss of income or serious illness or injury..
A list of viable options to foreclosure that might be in your best interests.
An experience negotiator that is on your side. There is a possibility that an alternative to foreclosure can be found and worked out. There are possible defenses and counterclaims that can be filed on your behalf as well.
What's the biggest mistake made in the foreclosure process?
Many clients come to our office days before their property is to be sold. This not only makes our job as your attorney more difficult, but it limits the defenses available to you. If the Court has already entered a default judgment against the borrower, we must show both a meritorious defense and excusable neglect to have the default set aside. Although this is possible in many instances, it is always better to consult an attorney as soon as possible to discuss your options. The longer you wait to get an experienced foreclosure attorney on your side, the fewer opportunities your attorney has to help you.