Pre-foreclosure, locks changed - Posted by Rob FL

Posted by AWWMi. on February 17, 2001 at 02:51:41:

You would have to check with the Experts here but I think an institution that has an interest in the property (ex: first, second mortgage) can by law secure a property that has been abandoned. I don’t know about the burden of proof. In this case, the lady gave them the keys to the house. A notice of abandonment is usually posted at the register of deeds. You could check there. Also I’m pretty sure the owner will have to get permission from the bank to reenter the house. Did they board up the windows?

Pre-foreclosure, locks changed - Posted by Rob FL

Posted by Rob FL on February 14, 2001 at 09:05:21:

This may go along with the thread below that Jim IL posted about bank’s securing/winterizing houses in foreclosure.

I ran across an abandonned house the other day. After a little research I was able to track down the owner. She told me the house is in pre-foreclosure however no lawsuit has been filed yet.

Apparently she told the bank that she is walking away from the house and she simply mailed them the house keys. Now the bank has gone in and changed the locks, so that nobody can get inside. I was able to sort of sneak in through a window (with the owner’s permission) and get a good look around the place. I am meeting with the owner today and once I have it under contract, I was planning on simply changing out the locks so that I can get in easily through the front door. I need to be able to show this property to some of my rehabber and contracter buddies.

Anybody see any problems in doing this without the bank’s permission? Any thoughts?

Re: Pre-foreclosure, locks changed - Posted by B.L.Renfrow

Posted by B.L.Renfrow on February 14, 2001 at 21:06:26:

I had one similar experience, where a house was vacant, but there were materials inside and signs all over the place. Showed up one day to find the locks all changed. I gained entry post-haste and found about $100 worth of my new materials missing! It took me a while to track down who was involved…multiple calls all over the country, etc. Turned out the lender assigned it to some huge east-coast property-management outfit, who assigned it to a local contractor…who wasn’t local, but was from 50 miles away. When I finally tracked down the contractor, he, of course, denied ever seeing my materials. I was so PO’d I was ready to call the police and make a stolen property report, but then I decided I didn’t want to spend half a day explaining to some mono-syllable cop (sorry, Jim, but I know the cops in this town) why I was breaking into a house I didn’t own.

In any event, whether it’s legal or not, the banks do indeed do this, if they think the house is empty.

Brian (NY)

Re: Pre-foreclosure, locks changed - Posted by Jim IL

Posted by Jim IL on February 14, 2001 at 13:09:23:

I would agree with Stacy.
And thinking along the same lines as it relates to my post below, If the lender changes the locks on my home I’ll be suprised.
Especially since there are 3 signs in the yard of my home (it is a corner lot), flyers in the windows, and a “Please take one” box on the front door.
I just don’t understand why a lender would even think about changing the locks on my home since it is OBVIOUS there is some sort of activity.
And I have been showing this home almost daily for the last week.

Oh well, we shall see.

Take care and best of luck to you,
Jim IL

Re: Pre-foreclosure, locks changed - Posted by Stacy (AZ)

Posted by Stacy (AZ) on February 14, 2001 at 10:54:31:

Rob, I can’t see how the bank would have any say in the matter, but to avoid confusion, why don’t you just change the back-door lock. That way, if a bank inspector/appraiser stops by, they probably won’t even notice the different lock.

The owner is still the owner and has possession until the foreclosure is complete. If she gives you permission to change locks, it seems obvious it’s within her rights.

Good question. I’ll read what others have to say.