Short Sale Tip 1-7-10

Posted on 07. Jan, 2010 by ctlms in Short Sale, foreclosure

Do you know the foreclosure process in CT?

I ran into a Real Estate Broker today that has been in the business since the 1970's and he had no idea how the foreclosure process works in CT or how to look up information about a possible foreclosure on the property he was working on.

So that got me thinking, how many others are in the dark?

Here are a few questions that I figure we should all have the answers to in today's market.

1. How do I know if a property is in pre-foreclosure?

A. The first document filed in the public record when a foreclosure is being initiated is called a Lis Pendens.  The Lis Pendens is served to the homeowner and recorded in the land records at the town hall of the town the property is located in.  This document is a notice to all that may review the chain of title on the property that there is pending litigation involving this property.  As a side note...Lis Pendens are also recorded on the land record when a property is part of a divorce.  So if you see one where the Grantor and the Grantee are both individuals, you can bet it is a divorce and not a foreclosure.

2. How can I find out where in the foreclosure process a property is?

A. The state of CT Judical Court Website.  About 10 days after the Lis Pendens is filed at teh town hall, the fill should be posted to the court website.  The website gives only general case information but is a good place to start and see where the property lies in the timeline.

3. What is the difference between Strict Foreclosure and Foreclosure by Sale?

A. Foreclosure by sale is what most people are familiar with.  If the court determines that there may be equity in a property above the debt owed to the foreclosing lender, a judgement will be rendered for Foreclosure by Sale and a Sale Date will be set.

If the court determines that there is no equity in a property, then a judgement will be rendered for Strict Foreclosure and a Law Date will be set.

Either date will be listed on the website.

4. How much time do I have to sell a property before it is foreclosed?

A. That depends.  Currently the courts are running at about 5 months or so from the start of the process.  But the sellers participation in mediation among other things can drag that out longer as does Bankruptcy.  A good rule of thumb is that we need an offer in hand at least 4 weeks before any pending Sale or Law dates.  So here in CT there is usually ample time to help a homeowner sell and avoid foreclosure.

5. Are the names of people facing foreclosure easy to find?

A.  If you are considering marketing to homeowners that may need to sell to avoid foreclosure, you will need to know who they are.  The best way to get this information is at the town hall.  However it is very labor intensive to gather.  Often times not all the information that you need to market to someone is on the Lis Pendens and needs to be cross referenced with other sources.  We visit 10 of the local town halls in North Central CT to gather this information on a weekly basis and it is time consuming to gather.  We do make this information available to agents that work with us to help homeowners.

Have any other questions on foreclosure or short sales?  Think you and your fellow agents could benefit from an office visit from us?  Give us a call or emai us for more information about or office visits.  They're free and always informative.

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