Selling a home can be tough, especially over time when the market and economy changes. Leftover mortgage payments can cause house selling to be a tough task, for no one wants to have existing debts with the bank. For this reason, short sale becomes the best option. A short sale is an agreement with the bank and owner to sell property for less than what the owner’s debt is and omit any unpaid balance owed.

While this method can be a beneficial way to relieve heavy debts, it comes with restrictions. When finishing a short sale, the owner and the buyer sign an Arms Length Affidavit, signifying that that no buyer/seller agreements have been made and that the seller is bargaining in their own interests. Signing this document also states that the buyer is an unrelated third party. If relatives were permitted to buy short sale home, there would be a high potential for mortgage fraud, as it would very likely that the relative would buy the home simply to relieve another of high debt.

In simpler terms, it is illegal for an individual to make a short sale with a relative. Doing so can result in a fine and/or jail time. While this method can be successful if a relative is distant enough to not reveal any relations, it is a risky move and should be taken very seriously as the consequences can be severe.

New buyers are always looking to get a good house for an even better price; the benefits of selling to a relative aren’t worth the costs. But if you wait for the right time, the right people will come and buy your house to help with your debts.

Stephen K. Hachey, a Florida real estate attorney, can help your wade through this process and determine a positive solution. Contact him at 813-549-0096.

The opinions in this post are solely those of the author. The author takes full responsibility for the content. Like all blog posts, this is offered for general information purposes and does not constitute legal advice.

When it comes to renting out homes, every landlord wants to make sure that their potential renter has a clean background check; this can prove that the renter is trustworthy with money handling and treating the property and the landlord’s equipment well. However, some landlord-renter relationships can end badly, potentially leading to an eviction notice. If an individual happens to have an eviction on their record, many may turn their heads and not allow them to rent anywhere else. People often wonder, is there something you can do to set aside or hide these evictions?

Unfortunately for the renter, evictions remain on your record indefinitely. Landlords are responsible for filing evictions, stating whether it is “for cause” or “without cause”. No matter the reason, having the word “eviction” on a rental record can be a red flag for other property mangers. Because eviction cases are civil and not criminal, the best thing for someone with one or more evictions is to find a landlord that is accepting of your current record.

As a renter shows an improvement on their rental record, a past eviction can become less of an issue for future landlords. The biggest problem for a renter is finding a landlord who knows of recent evictions or other issues and chooses to rent to them despite what their record shows. There is probably a better chance of single unit landlords renting to evicted people than complexes owned by larger companies.

When renting out places owned by other individuals, make sure to follow the rules and take care and responsibility for the things you do; the last thing anyone wants is to wake up and find an eviction notice taped to their front door.

Stephen K. Hachey, a Florida real estate attorney, can help your wade through this process and determine a positive solution. Contact him at 813-549-0096.

The opinions in this post are solely those of the author. The author takes full responsibility for the content. Like all blog posts, this is offered for general information purposes and does not constitute legal advice.

If you’re in the unfortunate situation of facing a foreclosure, there’s a possibility you’ll receive mail from a mortgage loan modification company promising to help you save your home. Beware, as many of these offers are scams. Here’s what you need to know about mortgage modification scams and whether you should hire legal representation if you find yourself in a pending trial involving one.

What You Should Know About Mortgage Modification Scams

When you’re facing a foreclosure, you feel vulnerable and scammers know it. Although an offer might look and sound official, this is only because scammers use specific tricks to win your trust and get you to call them and sign up for their mortgage modification services. To do this, they might:

  • Name their companies so they sound like they’re affiliated with official federal agencies or programs
  • Assure you that they’ve helped many in your position
  • Claim that they’re backed by a reputable attorney
  • Offer a money-back guarantee and promise they’ll save your home

Yes, You Should Retain Legal Representation

In a best-case scenario, you’ll consult an attorney when you receive a mortgage modification offer you’d like to look into. But if you’ve fallen to a mortgage modification scam already, take immediate action and hire legal representation to help you through the trial. Your attorney will guide you through each step of the process.

If you’re a victim of a mortgage modification scam, report it to the right authorities right way – the Federal Trade Commission, your state Attorney General’s office or your local Better Business Bureau. Your attorney will be able to help with that, too.

Stephen K. Hachey, a Florida foreclosure attorney, can help your wade through this process and determine a positive solution. Contact him at 813-549-0096.

The opinions in this post are solely those of the author. The author takes full responsibility for the content. Like all blog posts, this is offered for general information purposes and does not constitute legal advice.

After a foreclosed property has sold and the title has transferred, one of the first decisions that new title-holders must make is when (if at all) to turn off the utilities to their new home. While every sale is unique and comes with its own set of determiners, laws governing this transaction explicitly detail the process for shutting off utilities, such as water and electricity.

The duty of covering continuing utility costs fall to the new title holder and includes the accruement of fees for services such as garbage pickup, street cleaning, and sewage in addition to electricity and water. While they are entitled to immediate ownership of foreclosed properties, new title-holders must follow the proper practice of obtaining a writ before attempting to shut off utilities. This law remains active to protect against the act of “self-help eviction,” or the intention of evicting a tenant from a property without proper authority.

In many situations, tenants who haven’t violated the contract agreed upon with the initial owner occupy the marketed foreclosed property. When a new lender, investor, or owner assumes possession of the property, they cannot shut off the property’s utilities until the present tenant has vacated. New agreements can be made with the current tenant to continue or cease residency, but they are protected from eviction by the new owner for a brief period of time.

Many utility companies provide options for services to be turned on or off for a specified amount of time without requiring a large deposit to be made. Just to be safe, though, new title-holders should check the local policies and laws governing foreclosed properties before attempting to purchase.

Stephen K. Hachey, a Florida real estate attorney, can help your wade through this process and determine a positive solution. Contact him at 813-549-0096.

The opinions in this post are solely those of the author. The author takes full responsibility for the content. Like all blog posts, this is offered for general information purposes and does not constitute legal advice.