South Florida’s Zombie Foreclosures Have Plunged

Zombie Foreclosures, Abandoned Properties, Abandoned Homes, Broward County Foreclosure Defense Attorney, Broward County Foreclosure Defense Lawyer, Loan Modification Attorney, Loan Modification Lawyer,

Zombie foreclosures, or abandoned properties facing foreclosure, have decreased tremendously within the last year and both lenders and borrowers are reaping the benefits.

Zombie foreclosure, or abandoned properties that are going through the foreclosure process, have had a dramatic decline in South Florida in the past year. According the RealtyTrac’s Zombie Foreclosure Alert, there has been a 46 percent decline in Zombie Foreclosure during the second quarter of litigation, which translates to about 7,021 properties. An attorney from Royal Palm Beach attributes this to higher knowledge of the law. Residents are aware that they are not required to leave the property until it is sold. This is a great benefit to both parties.

The average value of a property that remains occupied during the foreclosure process is $251,236. Once a property turns into a Zombie Foreclosure it loses about 22 percent of its value, knocking it down to $195,856. It is in the banks best interest for a property to remain occupied during the foreclosure process as zombie properties tend to have overgrown yards and incur fees for municipal code violations. Abandoned homes also tend to have mold issues which could become costly for the bank to amend. Empty homes tend to bring down the value of all homes around it, which eventually turn in to ghost neighborhoods, where every other property is deserted.

However; lenders are more inclined to offer loan modifications to keep borrowers in their homes and rehabilitate former nonperforming loans as the economy improves. An attorney from Miami who represents lenders stated that they are getting increasingly more wary and tired of the litigation process. They prefer to extend the option of loan modifications to borrowers to avoid the year to two year wait for the foreclosure process to be complete.

If you have questions about Foreclosure, Loan Modification, Bankruptcy, Short Sale, or other alternatives, please feel free to call my office at 888-886-0020, send an e-mail to emil@fleysherlaw.com, or complete the contact form below.

Posted in Debt, Foreclosure, Mortgage Loan Modification | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Supreme Court Declares 2nd Liens Can’t be Stripped in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, Second lien, Second mortgage, Strip off second lien, strip off second mortgage, Bank of America

The Supreme Court ruled in favor of Bank of America to stop second lien stripping in Chapter 7 bankruptcies.

Banks win out after the Supreme Court ruled on Monday that homeowners cannot rid themselves of a second mortgage by filing for bankruptcy protection.  All nine Supreme Court justices unanimously agreed that filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy will not void a junior mortgage lien when the amount owed by the senior lien surpasses the current amount of the collateral if the homeowner’s claim is both allowed under the bankruptcy code and is secured by a lien. This ruling allows the junior lienholders to collect on loans in the event a debtor files bankruptcy and treat the subordinate loan as secured in bankruptcy proceedings.

The ruling, which will mainly benefit commercial lenders, states that the bankruptcy courts are forbidden from “stripping off” junior liens on property if the value on said property is used as collateral is below the amount the homeowner owes to the principal lienholder. Bank of America v. Caulkett, where the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Bank of America and the new bankruptcy ruling originated, asserted that junior liens should not be considered as unsecured loans, because the bankruptcy code only “strips off” claims from property that are disallowed and because the Supreme Court’s ruling in Dewsnup v. Timm, disallowing “stripping down” of primary liens to the value of the underlying property, should extend to this case.

If you have questions about Foreclosure, Loan Modification, Bankruptcy, Short Sale, or other alternatives, please feel free to call my office at 888-886-0020, send an e-mail to emil@fleysherlaw.com, or complete the contact form below.

Posted in Bankruptcy, Foreclosure, Mortgage Loan Modification | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

South Florida Had An Increase Of Foreclosure Activity In March

Foreclosure, Home Repossesion, Broward County Foreclosure Defence Attorney, Broward County Foreclosure Defence Lawyer,

March broke the 17-month high everyone was riding on with an increase in foreclosed homes.

According to a study by RelatyTrac March had an increase of foreclosure activity, reversing months of declines.  February had 4,577 filings in the tri-county area but during March the foreclosure filings went up to 6,329 for the tri-county area. The filing counts as a repossession, a judgment, or a new foreclosure lawsuit.  Broward County was at the top of the tri-county area with 3,169 foreclosure filings during March.  This is a 58 percent increase from February and a 68 percent increase from March of 2014.  Miami-Dade County followed with 1,872 foreclosure filings in March, which is a 29 percent increase from February but a 49 percent decrease for March of last year.

If you have questions about Foreclosure, Loan Modification, Bankruptcy, Short Sale, or other alternatives, please feel free to call my office at 888-886-0020, send an e-mail to emil@fleysherlaw.com, or complete the contact form below.

Posted in Foreclosure, Short Sale | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Personal Bankruptcy Petitions Drop in March

bankruptcy, tri county bankruptcy, South Florida Bankruptcy, Lower Bankruptcy,

The tri county area has had significant decrease in bankruptcy petitions during March 2015.

Personal bankruptcy filings have dropped 16 percent between February and March throughout South Florida.  This is according to the Sun Sentinel with data that was released in Miami by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court.  There were 2,389 new bankruptcy petitions filed by South Florida residents in February but only 2,008 files in March. Personal bankruptcies have lowered by 32 percent, dropping from the 2,969 filed in March 2010.  This drop shows that consumers are handling their finances better than they did a year ago.

The tri-counties in South Florida show a decrease in bankruptcy filings.  In lead with the most petitions is Miami-Dade County with 979, followed by Broward County with 680, and finally Palm Beach County with one 349 petitions.  The Associated Press reports that the drop in bankruptcy petitions may be the result of home foreclosure cases that have been stalled in South Florida courts.  According to the news source, foreclosure courts were established across the state last year to prevent those hearings from overwhelming the regular circuit court system.

If you have questions about Foreclosure, Loan Modification, Bankruptcy, Short Sale, or other alternatives, please feel free to call my office at 888-886-0020, send an e-mail to emil@fleysherlaw.com, or complete the contact form below.

Posted in Bankruptcy | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

February Shows Mayor Improvements for Foreclosures

new foreclosures, decline in foreclosure, stopping foreclosure, filing foreclosure,

South Florida has shown massive decline in new foreclosure filings during February.

A 35 percent decrease in new foreclosure filings can be seen in Broward and Palm Beach counties, showing how the improving economy and higher home prices are benefiting homeowners. In February 2014 Palm Beach County had 342 new filings, February 2015 only 223. Last year Broward County had 690 new filings in February but in 2015 there have only been 448 new filings. However, Florida still has the third highest foreclosure rate across the country with one in every 570 properties facing some kind of foreclosure process.  RealtyTrac reports that although Palm Beach and Broward counties are still seeing some adversity, the overall foreclosure numbers, which include bank repossessions and scheduled auctions, are expected to drop below pre-crisis levels.

New foreclosure filings have decline substantially during this past year. This is mostly due to the improving economy, job advancement, and the increase in home prices. The majority of the foreclosures in the court system right now are leftover from the height of the housing collapse.  South Florida attorneys agree that judges are working tirelessly through the backlog, and are aggressively setting dates for trials and auctions.  A Boca Raton attorney stated that homeowners could respond to a foreclosure lawsuit and put a series of delays that would leave the case sitting for two or three years but that is no longer happening as judges are pushing those cases forward. Data provided by RealtyTrac also shows that February’s figures were the lowest since the housing collapse in July 2006.

If you have questions about Foreclosure, Loan Modification, Bankruptcy, Short Sale, or other alternatives, please feel free to call my office at 888-886-0020, send an e-mail to emil@fleysherlaw.com, or complete the contact form below.

Posted in Foreclosure | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Reset of Loans Causes Increase in Home-Equity Payments

HELOC, HELOC payments, reset loans, default, underwater properties, inscrease of mortgage payments,

As Heloc payments are being reset, the risk of defaults has increase immensely.

As interest-only periods expire on loans begun during the housing bubble era, 3.3 million homeowners will be facing higher payments during the next four years on home-equity lines of credit, according to RealtyTrac.   The Heloc loans that totaled at $158 billion are requiring principal paydowns beginning this 2015 through 2018.  There is rising threat over the amount of new defaults due to the new monthly bills increasing an average of $146. This is especially concerning to those homeowners who already have properties underwater.

According to S&P/Case-Shiller index of property values, home prices have gone up 4.5 percent in the last year in 20 major cities. The threat is magnified because slowing price appreciation gives homeowners less hope of gaining equity.  Home prices are 16 percent below their July 2006 high, after recovering 29 percent from the post-bubble low in March 2012, the index shows.

Nearly $88 billion of the Heloc debt that began during the last house bubble is backed by homeowner’s who owe more the 125 percent of the resale value of the property and therefore have less incentive to keep up the with payments. Although the reset that took place in 2014 didn’t increase the default, the expectancy for defaults is high due to the increase of payments whose loans are already underwater. RealtyTrac estimates the peak will be 62 percent in 2016.

There are several states that have a high amount of properties that are seriously underwater and that will have borrowers facing a payment increase.   RealtyTrac reports that Nevada is at 84 percent, Arizona at 74 percent, and Illinois and Florida matching at 71 percent. However, the state of California has the largest amount of loans that will be scheduled for reset- 645,872 to be exact.  Out of those properties, two-thirds of them are seriously underwater with an average Heloc payment increase of $215.

If you have questions about Foreclosure, Loan Modification, Bankruptcy, Short Sale, or other alternatives, please feel free to call my office at 888-886-0020, send an e-mail to emil@fleysherlaw.com, or complete the contact form below.

Posted in Bankruptcy, Foreclosure, Mortgage Loan Modification, Short Sale | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

‘70s Pop Star Files Bankruptcy

David Cssidy, Filing bankuptcy, 70s teen idol, attorney fees, accountant fees

As accountant and attorney fees have accumulated, 1970s pop star and teen idol Dave Cassidy has filed for bankruptcy.

The 64-year-old former teen idol pop star David Cassidy has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Fort Lauderdale where he owns a waterfront property.  Mr. Cassidy reported debts included credit cards bills of almost $40,000, a mortgage of nearly $300,000, and a substantial amount in accountant and attorney fees. Judge Raymond Ray is assigned to the case. Cassidy’s assets and debts are estimated to be between $1 million and 10 million.

Although the petition was deemed incomplete due to 16 documents not being presented, the filing did state that Mr. Cassidy owes money to several attorneys and accountants.  One attorney who assisted Mr. Cassidy in a settlement over a race horse he owned with his former partner is owed more than $17,000, an accounting firm in Boca Raton is owed close to $15,000, another Fort Lauderdale attorney is owed more than $11,000 and a Fort Lauderdale accountant is owed at least $10,000.  This is not including his American Express credit card of well over $20,000 and maintenance fees on the Villa at Polo Towers in Las Vegas where he frequently performed who is owed $1,420.

The attorneys who are owed money are not too worried because they believe the law is on their side and Mr. Cassidy does have a multimillion dollar home on the water front. David Cassidy is known for his 1970s television show “The Partridge Family”, and hit songs like “I Woke Up In Love This Morning” and “I Think I Love You”.  In Broward County alone, Mr. Cassidy has been a defendant and in 12 cases.  Sue Shifrin, his wife, has filed for divorced after his third DUI arrest last year.

If you have questions about Foreclosure, Loan Modification, Bankruptcy, Short Sale, or other alternatives, please feel free to call my office at 888-886-0020, send an e-mail to emil@fleysherlaw.com, or complete the contact form below.

Posted in Bankruptcy | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

No Foreclosure If No Default Notice Received

Broward County Foreclosure, Broward County Foreclosure Lawyer, Miami Dade County Foreclosure Attorney, Miami Dade County Foreclosure Lawyer, Palm Beach County Foreclosure Attorney, Palm Beach County Foreclosure Lawyer

The banks mailing error, was enough for a jury to side with the homeowner and stop a foreclosure.

The Fourth District Court of Appeal ruled in favor of the homeowner over Deutsche Bank in a foreclosure case over the notice of default.  The property that the bank was trying to recover is in Port St. Lucie, one of the cities hit the hardest by the housing bubble; however, the hay the broke the camel’s back came from the mailing address which the notice of default was sent to. The homeowner’s attorney argued that the bank did not send the notice of default to the property address as stated on the terms of the mortgage, thus violating it but instead sent the notice of default to a PO Box.

Although the property was unoccupied at the time, the appeals court agreed that there was a violation of contract and has asked the case to be moved to the trial court for dismissal for prejudice for noncompliance with the mortgage’s acceleration. Fourth District Judges Carole Taylor, Robert Gross, and Spencer Levine all sided with the homeowner in an unsigned opinion. The homeowner’s other defense, the argument that the bank presented a backdated mortgage assignment and did not prove standing to foreclose, was not addressed.

If you have questions about Foreclosure, Loan Modification, Bankruptcy, Short Sale, or other alternatives, please feel free to call my office at 888-886-0020, send an e-mail to emil@fleysherlaw.com, or complete the contact form below.

Posted in Foreclosure | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

When Mortgage Transfers Go Array

Broward County Foreclosure Attorney, Broward County Foreclosure Lawyer, Palm-Beach County Foreclosure Attorney, Palm-Beach County Foreclosure Lawyer, Miami-Dade County Foreclosure Lawyer, Miami-Dade County Foreclosure Attorney

When the bank fails to connect the dots in a mortgage note transfer, the homeowners win out.

The Fourth District Court of Appeal ruled against HSBC Bank USA in a foreclosure case for lack of standing.  The defendants, Donna and Marc Murray, appealed a final foreclosure judgment against the bank with the argument that they failed to validate that the mortgage originator transferred its rights.  Judge Melanie May wrote on behalf of the unanimous panel “In this foreclosure puzzle, one of the pieces is missing”.

The Murrays had their original mortgage note with Option One Mortgage Corp., who did business as Sand Canyon Corp.  HSBC filed for foreclosure in February 2009 when the homeowner became delinquent on their loan claiming they own and hold the mortgage. However, the mortgage from Option One was not assigned to HSBC Bank USA until April of the following year, and even after that, the note itself was still payable to the servicer.

When Sand Canyon completed the mortgage assignment the following year, they backdated it to 2007, providing HSBC all the back-up they needed to claim its entitlement to enforce the mortgage terms as a “non-holder in possession with the rights of a holder”.  Palm Beach Circuit Senior Judge Howard Harrison presided over the bench trial.  “They got the mortgage. They got the records. They got the servicing. They got the whole thing. They just don’t have the endorsement, and is that fatal?” Harrison asked. “In other words do you have to go and get, and then start over again? That’s the question. I don’t know the answer.”

Ultimately Judge Howard Harrison ruled in favor of HSBC.  The homeowners argued that HSBC did not connect the dots as Option Once changed names, ownership and branding in the in-between years with several other companies servicing as depositor and servicers. What they court could not ignore is the fact that the mortgage note still remained payable to Option One without a legal transfer to the bank. The court went one step above and created a one-page diagram as an appendix listing all the corporate hands on the mortgage and leaving a dotted line representing “the missing piece in the chain of transfers.”

If you have questions about Foreclosure, Loan Modification, Bankruptcy, Short Sale, or other alternatives, please feel free to call my office at 888-886-0020, send an e-mail to emil@fleysherlaw.com, or complete the contact form below.

Posted in Foreclosure, Mortgage Loan Modification, Short Sale | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Landlords Gain As Demand For Rental Properties Increase

Rental Properties, renting a house, renting an apartment, homeownership rate, should I purchase or rent,

Landlords enjoying this time, as homeownership falls drastically and demand for rental properties increase.

In a report provided by the U.S. Census Bureau in Washington, D.C. the amount of properties that are inhabited by renters grew by 2 million last year.  The number of available properties to rent has fallen 7 percent in the fourth quarter; the lowest is has been since 1993.  Since the job market has picked up more young people are about to leave their parent’s home and start their lives.  But the parents aren’t the only ones benefitting from their kids leaving the nest, single-family home and apartment landlords are now able to increase rents as demand rises and supply is a slow to meet it.

According to the Census date the rate of homeownership has dropped to the lowest point since 1994. Owner-occupied households have dropped by 354,000 from a year earlier.  The rate of ownership by people 35 and under is at the lowest it has been since 1982.  The rate has fallen 35.3 percent, 1.5 percent just in the last year.  The number of total households – 1.66 million – is the largest since 2005, according to Jed Kolko, the chief economist for Trulia Inc.

The vacancy rate for owner-occupied properties declined 0.2 percentage points to 1.9 percent.  There was a $20.6 billion increase in 2014 as U.S. renters paid over $441 billion for houses and apartments as less and less Americans owned their homes and landlords with limited inventory increased their prices, states the data provided by Zillow Inc.

If you have questions about Foreclosure, Loan Modification, Bankruptcy, Short Sale, or other alternatives, please feel free to call my office at 888-886-0020, send an e-mail to emil@fleysherlaw.com, or complete the contact form below.

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Bankruptcy, Foreclosure, Short Sale | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off