In the current housing market climate competition for the purchase of houses is intense, and can often involve bidding wars. This is not only limited to the sale of homes in a conventional sense where realtors are negotiating on behalf of their clients, it happens in foreclosure cases, as well.
If you are unfortunate enough to be on the losing end of a mortgage foreclosure action and you are forced to forego continued possession of your real estate as the result of a clerk’s auction, often referred to as a judicial sale, you may still have the possibility of obtaining a payout from the sale of the property in the law suit as a result of a surplus bid. And it might just be the silver-lining to a mortgage foreclosure action.
For several years the surplus bid in a mortgage foreclosure action was like a unicorn. Sure, people said they had seen them, but no one could ever point to a verified sighting. They just didn’t really exist on any significant scale. Properties would proceed to the auction and the lenders would snap them back up at $100.00 apiece in most cases, and would then ultimately take possession of the property once the Certificate of Title issued. But gone are the days of the $100.00 bid by the lender in many cases. As home values in the area have increased, so too have the amounts that bidders are willing to expend to purchase a property worth purchasing at an auction.
If the amount of money bid at the judicial auction exceeds the judgment amount you may have a claim to a surplus, and thus entitled to the amounts in excess of the judgment. However, you must be careful in seeking that surplus, and file the request for the surplus in a timely and appropriate manner. Failing to do so may result in a loss of the claim or a diminished value to the claim. Having an attorney well versed in the law regarding surplus claims could well be the difference maker.
Our office handles surplus claims in mortgage foreclosure, homeowners’ association, and condominium association actions on a contingency basis and at no initial cost to the client. I would be our pleasure meet with you to discuss your potential claim and your options.
As a final note, Florida’s CFO has a Division of Unclaimed Property, which can be found at www.fltreasurehunt.org where you may be able to locate unclaimed funds or property that you weren’t even aware existed! Check out the site and see if you are entitled to any such funds or property – the service is a free one offered by the state.