If you’re facing foreclosure and wondering if you need a lawyer, you’re not alone: Over 35% of Americans are likely to face eviction or foreclosure over the next few months, according to the Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey.
Foreclosure occurs when a homeowner gets behind on their mortgage payments, and the lender takes over the property. The borrower is forced to move out, and the mortgage company will try to sell or auction the home to regain some of the debt they’re owed.
You can sometimes handle a foreclosure on your own, but the process can be extremely challenging to navigate. A foreclosure attorney represents either a bank or a homeowner during the foreclosure process. For example, an attorney can contest each step in the foreclosure process to attempt to buy a homeowner more time.
Attorneys may also be able to help homeowners negotiate with lenders to facilitate a short sale, which is typically less detrimental to a borrower’s credit score than a foreclosure and less expensive for the bank.