Foreclosure/Mortgage Default

What is a foreclosure?

It is the legal process through which a lender puts a house up for sale.  This is usually because of the homeowner has failed to make timely payments on their loan. Once the house is sold on the foreclosure date, it belongs to the person who bought it at the sale.

If I get a letter from the lender telling me I am in default or am late on my payments, what should I do?

DO NOT IGNORE ANY LETTERS FROM YOUR LENDER

You should immediately call a HUD certified counseling agency that offers FREE counseling, such as West Tennessee Legal Services (WTLS). WTLS can be contacted at 731-423-0616.  Such an agency can contact the lender and determine whether your home can be saved from eventual foreclosure.

If my lender has initiated foreclosure proceedings, what do I do?

You should immediately call a HUD certified counseling agency that offers FREE Counseling, such as West Tennessee Legal Services (WTLS). WTLS can be contacted at 731-423-0616.    Such an agency can contact the lender and determine whether your home can be saved from eventual foreclosure.

If I am having difficulty making a mortgage payment, what should I do?

You should immediately call a HUD certified counseling agency that offers FREE Counseling, such as West Tennessee Legal Services (WTLS). WTLS can be contacted at 731-423-0616.  Such an agency can contact the lender and determine whether your home can be saved from eventual foreclosure.

BEWARE OF FORECLOSURE SCAMS

Should I have to pay money to get someone to talk to my lender or to try to save my home?

NO.  Beware of offers to “fix” or “stop” your foreclosure for a fee.
Beware of offers to have the title to or ownership of your home transferred to someone else.
Beware of offers to lease your property back to you until your finances improve.

DISCLAIMER: The above information available through www.jacksonmadisonbar.org is basic legal information and is neither intended as legal advice, nor a substitute for legal advice.  No attorney-client relationship is created herein.  The content on www.jacksonmadisonbar.org is provided by the Jackson-Madison County Bar Association as a public service and for general information only. You should consult your attorney if you have questions concerning any specific situation. If you do not have an attorney, may we suggest that you visit our Real Estate Foreclosures section or find a lawyer in the phone book.  The topics covered through www.jacksonmadisonbar.org will provide basic information and should make it easier for someone with a problem to decide whether they need professional help from a lawyer or if another agency could provide them with assistance.

A special thanks to the Memphis Bar Association for its contributions and assistance to the Jackson-Madison County Bar Association in making available this legal information.  Portions of the foregoing content have been reprinted with the permission of the Memphis Bar Association.  www.memphisbar.org.