Property Rights & Foreclosures

When you have failed to make the mortgage payments on your house in a timely manner, the creditor may foreclose upon your property, putting it up for sale to the public in order to recoup their lost funds.  Since property titles are in trust until the full payment is made, the property is not considered to belong to you until it is completely paid off, which makes the foreclosure process relatively easy for lenders.

The Arizona Foreclosure Process

For a lender to foreclose in the state of Arizona, they do not have to take the matter to court. If the contract you signed for your mortgage has a “power of sale” provision, the lender may automatically sell the property without authorization of a judge. The lender does, however, have to notify you of its intent to sell by posting a notice of sale in county recorder’s office, and mailing you, and all parties on the deed, a certified copy of the notice. The notice must also appear in a county newspaper once a week for four weeks.

While you might think the lender must give you time to catch up on your mortgage, that is not the case. The trustee who holds the deed may offer you time to make up back payments, but this is not required by law. If you believe the lender has no right to foreclose, you do, however, have the right to contest the foreclosure, which will postpone the sale. Filing for bankruptcy is another option for halting the foreclosure process.

If there is no “power of sale” provision in your contract, the lender cannot foreclose without court order. In this case, they must seek a judicial foreclosure, and the court will decide whether or not you get the opportunity to make up back payments.

Deficiency Judgment

The lender cannot seek a judgment for the difference between the sale price and the mortgage amount on any property used as a single-family or two-family home, or any property with land less than 2.5 acres. If the property housed more families or property is larger than 2.5 acres, the lender may sue for the difference. In the case of single-family housing, the difference may be considered taxable income, however.

Oro Valley Foreclosure Attorney

If the foreclosure process has commenced, you cannot wait to respond. Scott Weible, Esq. represents those in Arizona, California, Virginia, and the District of Columbia who are facing the possibility of foreclosure.