We buy houses in Columbia South Carolina. Did you know that a recent study estimates that 47% of foreclosed properties are still occupied?
When you first see that stat, you may be surprised. As seasoned homebuyers in SC, we’re not.
What most people don’t realize is that banks aren’t in the business to own homes. They are in the business to loan people money. But when they have to foreclose on a house, the bank is forced to own the home until they’re able to sell it to get all or most of their money back.
But what they had found is that when a Columbia SC foreclosed house goes vacant, there is a much greater chance that it will fall into disrepair. Oftentimes, the bank would rather have you in the property even after you stop paying your payments and the foreclosure is started because it wards off vandals and keeps the home in good working order.
There’s been a lot of talk in the media about people living for free after foreclosure – and even many stories about banks “abandoning” properties. In those stories, people are avoiding house payments for months, even years.
Man, that sounds great! Let’s all live for free. (wink)
Wait… it can’t be that simple, right?
Right. No bank would purposely neglect to collect payments. The only way that you get to live without making any payments is when some major mistakes were made. But you might get lucky! It’s possible, and it’s happened before. However, it’s not exactly legal to avoid payments that you owe, and it can get you in serious trouble.
So, why are so many foreclosed homes occupied? It’s important to remember that no one wants the house to be vacant. Vacant homes are targets for vandalism and crime.
Staying in the property can help the bank maintain the value of their investment, so it’s actually in their best interests to keep it occupied. Partly because of the ways that the foreclosure laws are structured in South Carolina, banks may ask you to leave while wanting you to remain in your home.
There are a few perfectly legal ways to remain in your home, even after foreclosure.
How To Stay In My Home After Foreclosure In Columbia SC
Not all these options are available (depending on your situation and your lenders), and you’ll need some expert advice along the way to help you get through.
1) Wait It Out In Columbia
Honestly, this is a pretty bad option, but it seems to be increasingly common. You definitely shouldn’t run away and abandon your house when the first notice of default shows up. Remember that the proceedings and the process takes months and sometimes, years. It’s not over until it’s over, so don’t give up too early. On the other hand, don’t wait until the sheriff shows up to evict you to start packing up your stuff.
2) Go To Court In South Carolina
In very rare cases, judges are granting stays and delaying evictions. This is really only a valid option if you (and your attorneys) can prove that the bank has neglected a legal requirement during the foreclosure process. During the past few years, a lot of fraudulent behavior at banks has been uncovered, so we may see an increasing trend of using the courts to stop foreclosure. Fighting banks with lawyers are very difficult, expensive, and time-consuming, even if you’ve got a perfect case (most people don’t stand a chance).
3) Propose A Move-Out Bonus In Columbia SC
Often buyers of occupied foreclosure properties spend thousands of dollars on lawyers and other costs of eviction, so why not save everyone the time and expense by taking some of that money yourself? It’s known as “cash for keys.” It sounds a little greedy, but greasing the wheels does help everything to run smoothly. Plus, you can help out the bank and the buyers by not abandoning the house to squatters before they’re ready to take possession.
4) Rent It Back In Columbia
It may sound crazy, but some banks are willing to take on previous homeowners as tenants in their property. That’s only a short-term fix as they’ll want your agreement to vacate the premises as soon as they find someone to purchase the property. In some cases, we can even purchase the property and rent it back to you.
Sell My House In Columbia SC
It’s really good that you’re reading this page and exploring your options. As professional South Carolina home buyers, we help homeowners like you to find creative solutions.
If you’re planning to sell your house in South Carolina as a way to avoid foreclosure, feel free to get in touch with us at Pearl Properties. We offer cash for houses in Columbia SC from people like you who need to sell fast. We can’t help everyone, but we might be able to help you.