How common are foreclosure deficiency judgments in the real world?
November 17, 2011 1:32 PM   Subscribe

YANAL filter: I am looking at either a short sale, a deed-in-lieu, or a foreclosure. How can I form an educated guess as to the likelihood that the lender will pursue a deficiency judgment? (Details inside!)

I'm getting divorced. We bought our house on the assumption that we'd be using two incomes to pay the mortgage (and upkeep, and utilities). Neither of us can afford the house on our own without causing ourselves major financial distress. We are also about $50,000 underwater on the mortgage.

On the advice of a real estate lawyer who said that the lender is unlikely to consider a short sale until we're behind on payments, we've each moved out and are renting separate places. We're going to try to do a short sale, but I don't have a lot of hope that it's going to work. I have a feeling it's going to turn into a deed in lieu of foreclosure, or a plain old foreclosure, in which case we'll still technically owe the difference between our loan amount and what the bank can sell the house for.

I have heard that it's generally not in lenders' interest to pursue deficiency judgments, but I want to be ready with a Plan B if they do. Any advice I can find online is anecdotal. If you have more trustworthy statistics to share, I would be forever grateful.
posted by missrachael to Work & Money (2 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
You need to tell us what state you live in.
posted by doctord at 1:43 PM on November 17, 2011

Response by poster: Sorry- Maryland.
posted by missrachael at 1:59 PM on November 17, 2011

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