A Simple Guide To Understanding Foreclosure In Illinois

A Simple Guide To Understanding Foreclosure In Illinois

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Are You Facing Foreclosure In Illinois?



In today’s Illinois real estate market getting foreclosed on can be an unfortunate fact of life.


Due to a job loss, unexpected medical bills, or a difficult personal situation some people simply aren’t able to make their monthly mortgage payments.


If you fall behind in making the mortgage payments on your Illinois home the mortgage company has the right to begin a judicial foreclosure.


While the foreclosure process in Illinois can take some time, ultimately you will lose your home and could even be forced into personal bankruptcy.


Illinois Foreclosure Timeline


It can take several months – sometimes even one year or more – before a foreclosure in Illinois is finished.  During this time you still own your home and are allowed by law to stay in your home.


Foreclosure notice: After you have missed your mortgage payments for 120 days you will be served with a foreclosure summons – also called a complaint or a lis pendens – which is a notice that you are being sued.  You do have the right to appear in court and defend yourself against the foreclosure.


Reinstatement Period: You have 90 days after you receive the foreclosure notice to bring your mortgage current by paying all past due amounts, including any late fees and penalties.


Redemption Period: For at least 210 days (seven months) after you receive the foreclosure notice you have the right to sell your home, refinance it, or pay off the mortgage in full, including any penalties and late fees.


(During the redemption period the mortgage company may also allow you to reinstate your existing loan by bringing all payments and monies due current, but they are not required by law to do so.)


Auction or Sheriff’s Sale:  At the end of the redemption period the mortgage company will auction off your house to the highest bidder.  This is also called a sheriff’s sale, and after the court approves the sale you will have 30 days to move out.  Otherwise, the new owner of your house can have you forcibly evicted.


(Illinois State Law provides special protections against foreclosure for people in the military and for borrowers who have a ‘high risk home loan’.)


After The Foreclosure


Unfortunately your problems may not be over after you have been foreclosed on and forced to move out of your house.  That’s because the State of Illinois allows the mortgage company to obtain a deficiency judgment against you.


Let’s say your house sold at the foreclosure auction for $450,000.  But the total amount owed to the mortgage company – including the mortgage balance, late fees, penalties and legal costs – was $550,000.  That’s a $100,000 difference.


Even after going through a foreclosure and being forced to leave your house, you still owe the mortgage company $100,000.


To collect their money they will sue you and obtain a deficiency judgment against you.  Then the mortgage company will be able to garnish your wages and levy your bank accounts, tax refunds, or other assets.


Foreclosure Alternatives


The emotional distress of going through a foreclosure in Illinois and getting forcibly evicted can have a terrible impact on your job and your family.


Fortunately the foreclosure laws in Illinois are on your side.  During the the reinstatement and foreclosure redemption periods required by Illinois State Law you can:


  • Reinstate your existing mortgage
  • Refinance your mortgage
  • Sell your home


Trying to sell your home on the MLS can be difficult when you’re going through a foreclosure.  That’s because buyers will sometimes believe that if your home is getting foreclosed on then there must be something wrong with it.


Selling your home to a real estate investor can be much easier.  Professional investors know the Illinois real estate market and understand that bad things can happen to good people, through no fault of their own.

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