Imagine if you had a tragedy happen, like an illness, job loss, or other sudden expense. You fell behind on your mortgage payments. Foreclosure papers were being sent from the mortgage company. To get a fresh start you filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy or a Chapter 13 bankruptcy and surrendered the house. The Chapter 7 bankruptcy or Chapter 13 bankruptcy goes through, and you move into a home that you can afford.
Paying back property taxes and municipal fines for a house your surrendered is scary prospect. Chapter 7 bankruptcy or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy should protect you. Unfortunately, this has happened to far too many people in Milwaukee, and throughout Southeastern Wisconsin. Until recently, your options have been limited. Luckily, the Wisconsin Supreme Court is now allowing for former property owners to force mortgage companies to follow through and foreclose. See our blog post entitled, Good News for Individuals Looking to Surrender a House in Bankruptcy.
The City of Milwaukee is also trying to help the situation. Yesterday, the Milwaukee Common Council passed a new ordinance that requires mortgage companies to notify the City of Milwaukee of any potential foreclosures, so that the City of Milwaukee can make sure that the houses can be maintained after abandonment by their owners. This should help eliminate blight, and protect former owners from municipal fines for houses that have not been maintained. For more information on the program, see the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's article on the new ordinance.
This will not fully eliminate the problem of mortgage companies refusing to do their duty under the law and maintain and auction foreclosed properties. The attorneys at Croke & Croke, S.C. have experience dealing with zombie houses, protecting you from unpaid property taxes and municipal fines. Contact us to discuss your options. Or call at (414) 539-6184.
Also, if you want to keep your house, but have fallen behind on your payments, contact us, or call (414) 539-6184, about how we can help you stay in your home, either through mortgage modification, the HAMP or HARP programs, Mortgage Modification Mediation, or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy.