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3507 W Stetson Ave., Ste 141
Hemet, CA 92545
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Real estate for sale in southern California communities. Cheryl Gollnick, Real Estate Broker

zombie forclosure


(AKA, Zombie Houses / Zombie Titles)

Do you own a zombie?

A zombie house is a property that was in foreclosure but the lender or bank dismissed or cancelled the foreclosure process and in most all instances, the owner did not know or does not know that the lender or bank did this.This leaves the owner with a zombie title to the property and substantial liability.

Why would a lender or bank dismiss or cancel a foreclosure?

A lender may decide to dismiss the foreclosure for a variety of reasons, including a surplus of inventory, the costs associated with a foreclosure cannot justify its costs or if the lender does not want to take possession of the home for some reason, such as when they find out that the property will need substantial repair.

Why doesn’t the lender or bank notify the owner that they dismissed or cancelled the foreclosure?

Lenders and banks are under no obligation to foreclose and take legal title to a property, even if the borrower has defaulted on the loan. A lender may choose to walk away, charging off the debt rather than taking title to the property.

Lenders are also not required to let a homeowner know if they have decided to dismiss the foreclosure. A homeowner may have moved out while unknowingly still holding title to the property. The owner doesn’t know that they are still liable for all the associated costs and responsibilities of homeownership since ownership does not change until someone else's name is on the title.

How does this happen?

The owner in foreclosure, after receiving a notice that the lender or bank is going to foreclose (which means they plan on selling their property at public auction for enough to pay off the loan or they will take title to the property if it doesn’t sell), moves out of the home thinking the bank will take it. They do not know that the bank dismissed or cancelled the process that would have taken the property from them.

If the owner is unaware of the foreclosure dismissal or cancellation, they will be left holding the zombie property with a zombie title.

How does this affect the owner?

Zombie titles can lead to catastrophic financial troubles for homeowners who thought they had moved out and moved on. An unoccupied home, for example, can easily fall into additional disrepair if someone breaks in or moves into the property. Not only does the homeowner remain liable for property taxes, but they can also be held liable by the local government for maintenance and repairs on the property.

If left unpaid, the homeowner could incur penalties and fees, and even face legal action. In addition, holders of zombie titles may have their wages and tax refunds garnished, and their credit destroyed, resulting in more financial trouble in the future.

What is the best thing a homeowner in foreclosure can do?

Homeowners can protect themselves against their property becoming a zombie property and with left holding a zombie title by making sure the foreclosure process completes its course. The way to do this is to sell the property so that the title legally transfers to someone else!

How can we help you?

We can make you an offer to buy your property. We will buy it even if it has no equity. This is called a short sale. View the tab 'short sales" on the left panel for all the details.

If you have equity in the property, we can give you part of your equity.

zombie housesCall me so we can help you

                                   Cheryl Gollnick (951) 318-6420

CA BRE Lic. #01117664