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How to stay in my home after foreclosure in Fort Myers

A recent study estimates that 47% of foreclosed properties are still occupied.

When you first see that stat you may be surprised… but we’re not.

What most people don’t realize is that banks aren’t in the business to own homes.

Banks are in the business of lending money, but in cases of foreclosure, they end up owning the home until it can be sold to recover most, if not all, of their investment.

But, what they had found is that when a Fort Myers foreclosed house goes vacant… there is a much greater chance that the house will fall into disrepair.  Often times the bank would rather have you in the property even after you stop paying your payments and the foreclosure is started because it wards of vandals and keeps the house 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?


Banks don’t intentionally overlook collecting payments. The only scenario where payment obligations might be disregarded is when significant mistakes have occurred.

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 Florida, banks may ask you to leave while wanting you to stay.

There are a few perfectly legal ways to remain in your home, even after foreclosure.

How To Stay In My Home After Foreclosure In Fort Myers

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. Facing foreclosure is undeniably stressful, but it’s crucial not to make hasty decisions. While it might be tempting to flee at the first sign of trouble, such as receiving a notice of default, it’s important to remember that the foreclosure process is a lengthy one, often spanning months or even years. Panicking and abandoning your home at the first notice can exacerbate the situation. On the flip side, it’s equally unwise to wait until the last minute to prepare for the inevitable. Procrastinating until the sheriff arrives to evict you can leave you in a chaotic situation, scrambling to pack and find a new place to live. Therefore, it’s essential to stay informed about the process, explore all available options, and seek assistance from professionals to make the best decisions for your situation.

2) Go to court. In rare instances, judges are providing stays and postponing evictions. This avenue is typically viable when you, along with your legal counsel, can substantiate that the bank has failed to meet a legal obligation in the foreclosure procedure. Recent years have revealed numerous instances of fraudulent practices within banks, potentially leading to a rising inclination to resort to legal interventions to halt foreclosures. However, challenging banks through legal means is an arduous, costly, and protracted process, even with a strong case (a scenario in which most individuals are unlikely to prevail).

3) Propose a move-out bonus. Buyers of occupied foreclosure properties often find themselves facing substantial costs associated with eviction proceedings, including legal fees and other expenses. However, there is an alternative that can save everyone time and money: “cash for keys.” While this concept may initially seem self-serving, offering a financial incentive to the occupants to vacate the property voluntarily can streamline the process for all parties involved. By taking this approach, you not only avoid the expenses and delays of formal eviction proceedings but also help prevent the property from falling into the hands of squatters. This method can benefit both the bank, which wants to reclaim the property efficiently, and the buyers, who seek a smooth transition into their new home.

4) Rent it back. In some cases, banks are open to the idea of former homeowners renting their previously owned properties. This arrangement is often temporary, with the understanding that the tenant will vacate once the bank finds a buyer. However, there are situations where there might be an opportunity for the tenant to purchase the property back from the bank and continue living there as a renter. This option can provide a sense of continuity for the tenant while also helping the bank manage the property until a permanent solution is found.

It’s really good that you’re reading this page and exploring your options. We help homeowners like you to find creative solutions.

We can’t help everyone, but we might be able to help you.

We buy local Fort Myers Florida houses like yours from people who need to sell fast.s

Give us a call anytime at (239) 360-3176 or
fill out the form on this website today! >>

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