Bank Says I Don’t Own the House - Posted by Elizabeth NJ
Posted by Elizabeth NJ on April 13, 2006 at 23:07:50:
You know, I usually have some great deals, and every once in a while, I find myself in a jam. Your advice is welcome.
I bought a nice 2 family sub2 from the out of area owner who had never lived in the bldg. Ran title, paid him for the deed which I promptly recorded, and my attorney sent letter to bank requesting payoff amount on mortgage.
Lo and behold the bank’s lawyers say they foreclosed on the property FOUR years ago. Remember, we ran title, there’s no reference anywhere to a foreclosure. The bank’s lawyers say they foreclosed & the bank bid their lien. The Sheriff’s office says they prepared the deed for the bank after the 10 day redemption period, but that the attys for the bank did not pay the outstanding fees due the Sheriff for another TWO years and didn’t pick up the deed until then and that deed has never been recorded.
It’s an FHA loan, so I called HUD. The rep pulled up the property and said well I see it was foreclosed on, but I don’t understand why HUD has never received the deed. He said the normal course would be for the bank’s attys to record the deed and then file a claim with HUD for their work. No claim has been filed and the HUD rep says it’s unlikely the bank’s attys will be able to justify the expenses they’ll probably claim now, more than FOUR years later.
My attorney says NJ is a “notice race jurisdiction” which she explained means whoever gets to the court with the deed first wins. We’re prepared to litigate if necessary.
I clearly own the property and all I want to do now is pay off the mortgage but the bank’s attorneys refuse to give a payoff figure, and the bank itself won’t help because their attorneys have instructed them to not communicate with us.
I am absolutely convinced that the bank’s attys completely forgot about this property, maybe lost or misplaced the file, until I stirred everything up asking for a payoff figure.
Anybody have any suggstions, ideas on how to force the bank to produce the requested info without litigation? The bank’s attys won’t even get on the phone with my atty, they have a secretary at the firm speak with her.
Thanks for your advice.