Help extending the preforeclosure period - Posted by Ben (FL)

Posted by B.L.Renfrow on March 27, 2001 at 20:58:21:

By the time the lis pendens is filed, there’s an attorney involved, so at a minimum you’ll have their hourly rate or flat fee, plus a title search, plus a drive-by inspection. As the case progresses, the lawyer’s fee will increase proportionally based upon how much time the attorney has invested. When it gets to the publication stage, then the costs really skyrocket, since those legal notices aren’t cheap.

What I meant about finding them early is BEFORE the lis pendens is filed, like when the borrower knows he’s ABOUT to fall behind, or he’s missed only one or two payments. At that point, there are no legal fees, and all you have to do is bring the thing current.

Brian (NY)

Help extending the preforeclosure period - Posted by Ben (FL)

Posted by Ben (FL) on March 16, 2001 at 06:52:10:

Just finished Bronchik’s “Nut and Bolts” course a couple of weeks ago, and decided to use a strategy he suggested in my next mass mailing to people who had just been notified that they were in foreclosure. He had suggested that the time before the final sale at auction may be extended by 60 or 90 days, if the Hearing for the Motion for Summary Judgement could be delayed - and one way to do that was to claim that the home owner had not been properly notified. That might necessitate another hearing that would have to take place before the Summary Judgement hearing.

My problem now is that I’ve gotten 3 responses on my mailing from people in foreclosure who want my help, and I can’t find that place on the tapes to go back to and remind myself what Bronchik was saying, exactly. The idea is not covered in the written text.

Is it enough to just have the homeowner in foreclosure just write a letter to the Clerk of Courts that states “Hey, I just found out I was being foreclosed on. I don’t think I was properly notified.” ?

Re: Help extending the preforeclosure period - Posted by TJ

Posted by TJ on March 17, 2001 at 24:30:22:

Jeeez… Not to sound ridiculously ethical or anything, but don’t you think it might be wrong, and perhaps perjury, for an owner to claim he wasn’t propery served when he was?? Bronchick wouldn’t actually suggest this would he? I don’t have any special soft spot for banks but if a borrower can’t pay, the bank ought to be able to foreclose without worrying that an investor might induce a deadbeat owner to lie to the court and disrupt the legal process to keep his house longer.

Just one guy’s opinion.

TJ (Esq.)

Re: Help extending the preforeclosure period - Posted by B.L.Renfrow

Posted by B.L.Renfrow on March 16, 2001 at 08:52:54:

I haven’t seen Bronchick’s course to which you refer, but I would think it would not be routine for the court to grant such a request, providing the lender could demonstrate that the borrower had been properly served. An affadavit from the process server would likely accomplish that.

Keep in mind also that as the action progresses, the costs will only increase. When I deal with preforeclosures, my goal is to get in as early as possible – preferrably before they’re even behind. Once the back payments, attorney’s fees and miscellaneous lender junk fees start to add up, it can dramatically increase the cost to bring the things current.

Brian (NY)

Re: Help extending the preforeclosure period - Posted by Ben (FL)

Posted by Ben (FL) on March 18, 2001 at 10:54:02:

Perjury is lying under oath, so no it’s not illegal. Also, there is a very precise process that must be followed for a bank to foreclose. First there’s service of a Lis Pendens, then there’s a hearing where the judge says "OK, the bank is entitled to “X”, and the attorney is entitled to “Y” and the house will be auctioned on this date. Introduction of a question as to whether a defendant has had the opportunity to respond might put off the date of the hearing.

People, lawyers I should say, file documents with the court all the time to delay processes. Is it right? Morally? I don’t know. Is it illegal? Absolutely not.

Plus, I’m not trying to help someone deadbeat keep their house longer. I require that the contract I sign with them stipulates that they are moved out of the house within 30 days after signing. Either they move out voluntarily with me, or the Sheriff kicks them out at the request of the bank, later. My only purpose for trying to put off the sale is that I need extra the time to market and sell the house. I’ve gotten involved with many houses in preforeclosure, and sometimes 30 or 45 days is just not enough time to sell the house. I’ve spent significant amounts of time and money marketing a couple of houses that I had not sold by the auction date. So I’m out and the owner’s upset that I couldn’t help them (despite all the disclaimers and disclosures that I may not be able to help).

Why don’t I just buy the house? Sometimes I do if the conditions are right. I could do the “subject to” thing, but that would require me to lay out $5k to $10k to reinstate the loan. Even if I had a pile of cash or a partner with the cash, putting the cash at risk severely limits the number of houses I can go after.

Re: Help extending the preforeclosure period - Posted by Richie

Posted by Richie on March 27, 2001 at 10:28:50:

Do all of the legal fees get attached at the time of lis pendens, or can they be avoided by finding them within the first week or so?

Re: Help extending the preforeclosure period - Posted by TJ

Posted by TJ on March 18, 2001 at 22:04:57:

Ben, I guess I’m just sensitive about this because of all the times I’ve been a landlord in unlawful detainer court and had to listen to tenants make any kind of false statement just to stop or delay the eviction. They are actually coached and educated in such tactics by “legal aid” attorneys who are paid by you and me through our taxes. They have the same view of delay tactics. They are just innocently “buying time.” Actually, it’s not “buying”, it’s stealing time. I’m loosing rent and paying court fees while they obstruct the process.

Since I’m an attorney I’m woefully familiar with the delay tactics used by attorneys. Although often unscrupulous they are not usually illegal. But if you are talking about a party to an action flat out claiming he was not served with process or notice when he was, that is illegal. It may be hard to enforce but that’s another matter. Nothing personal. I’m trying out pre-foreclosures too and I know how tricky it gets. Good luck.