Residents aren’t leaving after foreclosure

In Nevada, residents aren’t leaving their foreclosed homes as quickly as they should. Las Vegas real estate values have been on the rise since the recession, and therefore foreclosures are steadily decreasing. Just a few years ago, Nevada residents were packing up and leaving at the first sign of foreclosure. But recently, people have been sticking around long after they are foreclosed upon. However, Nevada still has one of the highest rates of homeowners fleeing their homes when the bank takes over.

A new report by RealtyTrac revealed that 32 percent of homeowners whose homes are in the foreclosure process vacate well before the bank actually takes over, which is known as a zombie foreclosure. Even though the number has decreased, Nevada ranks 6th in zombie foreclosures in the US. Oregon came in at number one with 40 percent, with the average rate in the US being 21 percent.

RealtyTracalso reported that of all the homes being foreclosed in 2013, only 1,900 of these were zombie foreclosures. This is an extraordinary drop from 48 percent for the previous year.

Laws were implemented in Nevada that led to an increase in zombie foreclosures, stretching out the foreclosure process by preventing banks from seizing homes as quickly as they used to. Many Nevada residents have been left in a sort of “legal limbo,” and homeowners that are significantly behind on payments should lawfully have their house taken. However, the bank is so behind in paperwork that people are remaining in their homes much longer than they should.

The foreclosure rate soared to an all-time high when the housing market crashed in Nevada. In 2011, banks were seizing up to 2,500 homes a month. State lawmakers wanted to slow this down, and thus the robo-signing law took effect in Fall 2011. This law made it illegal for banks to pursue foreclosures without showing they were the true holder of the loan documents.

Since then, two more laws have been passed regarding foreclosure. Senate Bill 321 was passed to help homeowners avoid foreclosure by preventing banks from seizing someone’s home whiletrying to pursue a short sale. This offered homeowners more options to prevent a foreclosure. Assembly Bill 300 changed a provision of the robo-signing law, making it slightly easier for banks to take homes. These two bills are essentially working against each other, confusing both homeowners and banks in the process.

The robo-signing law mandated bank employees to sign an affidavit, reporting that they had personal knowledge of the property’s financial document history before foreclosing. Assembly Bill 300 allows the bank’s affidavit to be based upon a review of internal lending records.

If your house is being foreclosed upon, you may want to speak with a real estate attorney. An attorney at Simon Law can help with foreclosure proceedings, and a real estate lawyer will be able to assist you in court procedures and in negotiating with lenders for short sales of properties. With over 30 years of experience, the attorneys at Simon Law will provide quality service for you. For more information about residential real estate law, contact 702.451.7077 or