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Short Sale & Foreclosure Terms

If you think many of the terms used in discussions on Short Sales and Foreclosures sound foreign, you aren't alone. Let us take the mystery out.

Advertising (or Publishing)
A copy of the notice of Trustee Sale must be published once a week for three weeks

Bankruptcy Chapter 7
Often called a straight bankruptcy-involves the liquidation of all non-exempt by the bankruptcy trustee, who in turn distributes the proceeds to qualified creditors. All dischargeable debts are discharged and the person(s) filing receive a ‘fresh start’

Bankruptcy Chapter 13
Often called a debt reorganization. A Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is generally appropriate for those individuals who have non-exempt property they wish to retain and who have enough income to reasonably pay the reorganized debt after covering reasonable living expenses.

The beneficiary in a foreclosure context is generally the mortgage lender. Frequently referred to as the ‘Benny’

Credit Counseling
Under the new bankruptcy law which took effect in October of 2005, those wishing to file bankruptcy must complete an approved credit counseling course within the six (6) months prior to filing.

Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure
The voluntary surrender of property by an owner/borrower to a lien holder that eliminates the need to continue foreclosure action by the lien holder. The lien holder can refuse to accept the Deed in Lieu and file a notice of Non Acceptance with the county recorder.

Discounted Payoff
The payoff of a mortgage loan where the lender accepts an amount less than the actual amount owed to payoff the loan.

Equity Deficient
A property is Equity Deficient when, if sold, sales proceeds would not fully pay off existing mortgage debt.

Judicial Foreclosure
A foreclosure action conducted through the courts instead of through a foreclosure trustee. Judicial Foreclosures are very uncommon in California, particularly on residential properties. Should a lender elect to pursue a deficiency judgment, it would be through a Judicial Foreclosure.

Junior Liens
A lien, usually a mortgage loan, that is subordinate to a senior lien, usually a first mortgage. Lien priority is generally established by order of recordation . NOTE: if you refinance a 1st mortgage on a property with a 2nd mortgage already in place the new 1st mortgage holder will require a subordination agreement from Junior Lien holders to legally establish the new mortgage holder 1st or senior position.

Loss Mitigation
Home mortgage lenders look to limit losses on delinquent mortgages by working out solutions with borrowers through their Loss Mitigation Departments.

A copy of the notice of trustee’s sale must be mailed (certified and first class) at least 20 days before the foreclosure sale to the borrower and to anyone who was entitled to receive a copy of the notice of default and Secretary of State and IRS, if applicable.

Short for Notice Of Default

Notice of Default
An official notice filed and recorded by a designated trustee at the request of a lender indicating lender has commenced foreclosure action.

Notice of Trustee Sale
An official notice that is posted, mailed, published/advertised and recorded by trustee at the direction of lender indicating lender’s intention to sell property at public auction. The notice includes a specific date, time and location.

A copy of the notice of sale must be posted in a conspicuous place on the property to be sold at least 20 days before the sale. Also, a copy of the notice must be posted at one public place in the city where the property is to be sold at least 20 days before the sale.

Trustee Sales may be postponed at the time and location specified for the intended sale.

Qualifying Funds
In order to bid at a Trustee Sale bidder must have qualifying funds available at the sale. Qualifying funds are cash or a cashiers check(s) drawn by a state or national bank, a check(s) drawn by a state or federal credit union or check drawn by a state federal savings and loan association, savings association or savings bank specified in section 5102 or the Financial Code and authorized to do business in the state of California.

Short for Real Estate Owned. When a mortgage lender acquires a property, typically through foreclosure, it becomes real estate owned – or REO.

To bring the loan current. Borrower may reinstate up to five (5) business days before foreclosure sale.

Short Sale
The sale of a home which is completed through negotiation with the existing lender(s) in which the lender(s) agrees to accept less than the full amount owed to satisfy the debt allowing the debt to be ‘paid off’, short.

Trustee Deed
The deed given to the highest bidder at auction or the foreclosing lender upon completion of the foreclosure.

Trustee Sale
Conducted by the trustee. The property is sold at auction to the highest bidder, or taken back by a foreclosing lender.