You may be facing foreclosure in Georgia and are wondering what the foreclosure process in Georgia looks like, how to stop foreclosure, or can you sell a house in foreclosure.
This article will dig deeper into what Georgia’s foreclosure process looks like.
Just know that there is hope – keep reading to find out how to stop foreclosure on your home.
Missing Payments: How To Avoid Foreclosure
For the most part, banks will auto draft all mortgage payments out of your account.
If you don’t have this setup, you should set this up immediately to avoid late payments moving forward.
If you are late on your payments to your lender, you typically have a grace period of about 10-15 days before you receive your foreclosure notice from the lender.
The late fees for missing payments on your mortgage are typically 5% of the monthly payment.
If your payment is $1,000, you’ll be charged an additional 5%, or $50.
You’ll now owe the bank $1,050. To find out the late charge amount and grace period for your loan, look at the promissory note that you signed.
This information can also be found on your monthly mortgage statement.
If you miss a few payments in a row, then your loan provider will be in contact with you via letters and phone calls.
Don’t avoid contact from the bank.
This is a great opportunity to figure out a loan modification with your mortgage lender.
Remember, banks are in the business to have loans on assets.
They don’t make money when they are managing vacant properties.
Banks really want to stop the foreclosure on your property as much as you do.
If you’re trying to avoid foreclosure, or you just need foreclosure help, always start with discussing your options with your lender.
Foreclosure In Georgia: Preforeclosure
Under the Federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau servicing rules that went into effect January 10, 2014, the mortgage servicer must wait until you are 120 days delinquent on payments before making the first official notice or filing for any judicial or nonjudicial foreclosure.
This is to give you sufficient time to explore loss mitigation opportunities.
As soon as you think you are facing foreclosure in Georgia, start to explore how you can avoid foreclosure.
It’s easier to make up being behind on one mortgage payment vs being behind on 4 of them.
This will give you a greater opportunity to save your home from foreclosure in Georgia.
If a servicer’s sole purpose of providing notice is to inform you that you are late on your payments and/or explain what your loss mitigation options are, the servicer can deliver the notice within this pre-foreclosure period.
How Long Before Foreclosure?
Most residential foreclosures in Georgia are nonjudicial, which means the lender can start the foreclosure process without going to court so long as the Security Deed contains a power of sale clause.
A “power of sale clause” is a paragraph in the Security Deed that authorizes the nonjudicial foreclosure sale.
Judicial foreclosure just means that the foreclosure happens within the foreclosure court systems, while nonjudicial foreclosure means that the foreclosure on your property happens outside of the courts.
With Georgia not being a judicial foreclosure state, this allows the banks to start the foreclosure proceedings without foreclosure attorneys and going to court, making the foreclosure process much harder for the homeowner to stop.
30 Day Notice Of Intent Of Foreclosure
If you are going through a foreclosure eviction you may be wondering “How long before foreclosure happens on my house?”
Like we mentioned before, the bank has to wait a minimum of 120 days to perform foreclosure in Georgia, but then they will start the process.
The foreclosure eviction notice will be sent via registered mail, certified mail, or overnight delivery, return receipt requested, to the property address or to any other address the borrower has designated by written notice to the lender.
The foreclosure eviction notice will include:
- a copy of the notice of sale, which includes the date and location of the sale, that will be published in the official county newspaper
- the name, address, and telephone number of the individual or entity that has full authority to negotiate, amend, and modify all terms of the mortgage (which is generally the loan servicer).
Selling Your House In Foreclosure
Foreclosure sales are held at the county courthouse on the first Tuesday of the month (unless that day is New Year’s Day or the 4th of July, in which case foreclosures are held on the Wednesday of that week) between 10:00 A.M. and 4:00 P.M.
The property will be:
- sold to the highest third-party bidder, or
- revert to the foreclosing lender and become REO.
- The lender will typically bid in the amount of the debt plus costs. However, if the lender intends to pursue a deficiency judgment, then the property must be appraised before the sale to ensure that the lender bids the fair market value of the property.
Consequences Of Foreclosure: Foreclosure Effects
Unfortunately, the effects of foreclosure hurt your credit score, which means that it will be harder and sometimes impossible to get credit cards and loans in the coming years after the foreclosure and that you can expect to pay higher interest rates when you have a foreclosure in Georgia.
Plus, some Atlanta employers look at your credit score, which means that it may make it more difficult to land a job if you have gone through foreclosure with your Georgia house.
Credit experts estimate that the effects of foreclosure will lead to a dip in your credit score of about 200 or 300 points after a foreclosure.
So let’s say you had a near-perfect 800 credit score pre-foreclosure; after the foreclosure process, you might have a credit score that was more in the 600 or lower range, which is considered bad (credit scores range from 300 to 850).
The good news is that foreclosures will be wiped off of your credit report after seven years and that if it was an isolated incident — you didn’t also default on a bunch of other payments — it won’t have as large of an impact on your credit score and your future abilities to make larger purchases of a home, a car, or renting a house.
Going forward after foreclosure, try to pay all of your bills on time and minimize the amount of money you owe, as these can help boost your credit score more quickly
Losing your home to foreclosure due to economic hardships, medical reasons, etc. versus just walking away from a house that’s underwater will affect your credit score after foreclosure differently.
If you truly hit hard times, then that’s noted in your files and you may be able to make a home purchase within 3-4 years.
Compare that to just walking away from the underwater property, in which you’ll have to wait the full 7 years to make another home purchase.
This is why I reiterate that it’s very important to talk to the bank throughout the entire process of going through foreclosure even if they are really tough conversations.
Being open with them, trying to fix the problem, and putting your best foot forward could have short term and long term benefits.
If they are willing to work with you then they may increase how long you have until foreclosure on your property.
This will allow you to figure out if you can sell your house before foreclosure and get out from underneath the burden of foreclosure.
At Breyer Home Buyers, we specialize in helping homeowners get out of foreclosure before they ruin their lives.
We have brought dozens of homes from people facing foreclosure, allowing them to pay off the bank note, and move on with their lives.
We don’t work with everyone we come into contact with, but if you’d like to see if we could help you, fill out the form below and one of our team members will call you today.
Georgia Foreclosure Attorneys Near Me
If you’re a struggling homeowner facing foreclosure in Georgia, you’ll need to decide not only if it is worth your time to fight the foreclosure on your home, but also if it is worth paying for a foreclosure attorney to help you save your home from foreclosure in Atlanta and the surrounding areas.
In some cases (say you have a valid defense to the reason you’re facing foreclosure, like medical reasons, and want to keep your home), you’ll need a foreclosure attorney to assist you with how to stop a home foreclosure.
In other instances, such as if your goal is to stay in the home through the foreclosure process, or just to gain some additional time before the bank completes the foreclosure, it often makes sense to go at it alone.
How Foreclosure Lawyers Can Help Me Stop Foreclosure
If you want to stop foreclosure, hiring a foreclosure attorney to go at bat with you to try to stop foreclosure in Georgia will benefit you in some of the following situations:
The Loan Servicer Didn’t Follow Georgia Foreclosure Laws
Loan servicers must follow strict Georgia foreclosure laws when they are serving you foreclosure notices on your house.
If you believe that the loan servicer didn’t follow the foreclosure laws for Georgia, then consult a local Georgia foreclosure attorney to see if the loan servicer made a procedural mistake significant enough to stop foreclosure on your house.
The Bank Can’t Prove They Own Your Loan
Sounds crazy, right? Just know that when you get a loan on a house, the bank, no matter what size, bundles all of the loans they got that month and they sell them to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in bulk.
Your local banks usually don’t hold mortgage notes.
If you think that it may be difficult to for the bank holding your promissory note to prove that they own your loan, then it may be worth hiring a foreclosure lawyer to figure out if you have a defense based on the fact that the foreclosing party can’t prove that it owns your loan.
Your Loan Servicer Made A Massive Mistake
Banks make mistakes and this time it’s to your advantage.
We’re not talking about when they forget to deposit your money (that’s a bad mistake).
Sometimes banks misapply funds to your account, fail to credit payments to the account, or charge unreasonable and non-allowable fees.
A foreclosure attorney who is familiar with reviewing servicer payment histories during cases trying to stop foreclosure (which can be difficult to interpret) can help you figure out if the servicer made a serious error with your account that amounts to a foreclosure defense can help you stop the foreclosure.
How To Stop Foreclosure On My Home
Some ways to stop foreclosure on your house are:
- Apply for mortgage modification
- File for bankruptcy to stop foreclosure
- File a lawsuit: Hire a foreclosure attorney
- Sell your house fast in foreclosure to an investor
If you’re wondering “Can I sell my house in foreclosure?” read on.
Can I Sell My House Before Foreclosure?
A common question that we get at Breyer Home Buyers is “Can you sell your house while in foreclosure?”
The answer is yes, you can sell your house in foreclosure, and you can even sell your house before foreclosure and save yourself all of the headaches and stress that your family would have for a decade to come from foreclosing on your house.
As described above, you have a 120-day window from missing a payment on your mortgage until the bank serves you with a foreclosure eviction notice per Georgia’s foreclosure laws telling you that your house is going to be sold at the courthouse steps unless you make your mortgage payments up to date.
Your house in foreclosure will be sold at the next courthouse foreclosure auction, which is the first Tuesday of every month.
If you’re not going to be able to make your payments up on your mortgage, your best option is to sell your house fast in foreclosure to a company like Breyer Home Buyers.
You will be able to sell the house as is and you can close when you choose.
This means that you don’t have to fix anything up, you can leave your junk in the property and take what you want, you don’t have to pay Realtor commissions, or wait a few months for your house to sell on the market.
You have peace of mind because Breyer Home Buyers can close on your house in as little as 14 days.
Call us today or fill out the form below to get a cash offer on your house and avoid foreclosure.
Stop My Foreclosure: Can You File Bankruptcy To Stop Foreclosure?
How To Delay Foreclosures In Georgia
Before your foreclosure goes into foreclosure auction, you can delay the foreclosure process in Georgia.
When you file for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy or Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the foreclosure court system in Atlanta will automatically issue a call of relief on your property.
This is also known as “Automatic Stay.”
The automatic stay requires, by Georgia foreclosure law, that your bank cease their foreclosure collection activities immediately.
If your lender had scheduled your home for a foreclosure sale, and you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the sale will be legally postponed while the bankruptcy is pending—typically three to four months.
However, the lender can ask the bankruptcy court for permission to proceed with the foreclosure sale by filing a “motion to lift the automatic stay.” If successful, you won’t get the full three to four months.
But, even so, it takes time for the motion to be filed and heard by the bankruptcy courts, so the bankruptcy will typically postpone the foreclosure sale in Georgia by at least two months, or even more if your lender in Atlanta is slow in pursuing the motion to lift the automatic stay.
Many people want to remain in their house instead of selling their house in foreclosure in Atlanta.
If that describes you and your family, but you’re behind on your mortgage payments with no feasible way to make your mortgage payments before your house goes to foreclosure auction in Atlanta, Georgia then the only way to remain in your house is to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
Using Chapter 13 bankruptcy to stop foreclosure lets you make up the payments that you’re behind on the mortgage during the duration (usually 5 years) of your Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
This will work for you assuming that you can easily afford the extra payments.
If your income is not significant enough to make up the difference then you’ll still lose your home to foreclosure.
If you’re able to make all of the payments, then you avoid foreclosure and get to keep your home.
Can You Sell A Home In Foreclosure In Atlanta?
You could work at trying to find a buyer through a Georgia Realtor to buy your house quickly.
However, a faster and easier option is to find an investment firm that buys houses as-is for cash, fast.
Instead of spending all of your time and energy trying to locate a buyer with a Realtor in Georgia, there are many companies that can do this for you.
Companies like Breyer Home Buyers will buy the house from you at a reduced price, and very quickly.
We understand that the possibility of losing your home due to foreclosure can be stressful.
You aren’t alone.
Citizens all over Atlanta are going through the same troubles.
Foreclosure can have a lasting effect on your financial life, and it’s important to move quickly and take advantage of any options available.
You could save both your credit rating and remain in your home.
We may be able to help you avoid foreclosure… connect with us today and let’s discuss your situation.
We don’t charge any fees… we’ll evaluate your situation… and present you your options so you can move forward and get this foreclosure behind you.