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Grayslake Foreclosure Defense LawyerOriginally published: July 19, 2019 -- Updated: November 8, 2021

UPDATE: A consent foreclosure, as described below, may be a beneficial way for a person to relinquish ownership of their home and avoid a deficiency judgment. However, homeowners who are considering a consent foreclosure should be sure to understand how this will affect their credit. The completion of a foreclosure will be included in a person’s credit report, which could affect their ability to secure a mortgage in the future. If this will be a concern, a homeowner may need to determine whether completing a short sale or using a deed in lieu of foreclosure will be a more beneficial option.

Homeowners should also understand how junior liens such as a second mortgage or home equity line of credit may affect their ability to complete a consent foreclosure. A consent foreclosure will remove all liens from the title of the home, and a mortgage lender will waive their right to pursue a deficiency judgment to collect any additional amounts owed on a mortgage. All lenders who have an interest in the property must consent to this type of foreclosure. Because junior mortgage lenders may not be able to recover what is owed, they may object to a consent foreclosure. If objections prevent a homeowner from completing a consent foreclosure, they may need to consider other options. In some cases, a judicial foreclosure may be completed, and a person may need to file for bankruptcy to address deficiency judgments by one or more mortgage lenders.

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Gurnee Real Estate AttorneyDuring a residential real estate transaction or another situation where ownership of a home is transferred from one party to another, the parties will use a deed to complete the transfer. A deed is a legal document in which a grantor who owns or has a claim to the property will transfer their ownership interests to a grantee. There are multiple types of deeds that may be used, and in some cases, a grantor may be looking for a simple release of their ownership claim. In these situations, a quit claim deed may be used, but when doing so, the parties should be sure to understand how this type of deed will affect their rights and obligations.

Situations Where a Quit Claim Deed May Be Used

Typically, ownership of real estate is transferred using a warranty deed, which will provide the grantee with protections and ensure that they are not liable for liens on the property or other encumbrances. A quit claim deed will not provide a grantee with these types of protections. Instead, it simply releases the grantor’s claim on the property. It will not affect the mortgage on the property, and a grantor may still be liable for paying off the amount due on the home loan. 

Since quit claim deeds allow for the simple transfer of property without any warranties, they are usually only used in a few specific situations, including:

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Grayslake Real Estate AttorneyThe process of buying or selling a home can be complicated at the best of times, but since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, people involved in these types of transactions have encountered additional challenges. In some cases, people may be concerned about safety issues related to the possible spread of infections. At the same time, many people have become used to working from home or holding virtual meetings, and they may find it easier to handle business using online tools rather than meeting in person. Homebuyers and sellers will want to understand the options that may be available to them during a home closing, including whether these matters can be completed virtually or whether documents can be signed electronically.

Options for eClosings

Traditionally, a home closing has involved a lengthy meeting in which the parties sign multiple documents that transfer ownership of the property and establish a homeowner’s financial obligations to their mortgage lender. Due to concerns about COVID-19, many realtors, attorneys, lenders, and other involved parties have taken steps to limit contact during closings, sign documents electronically, and handle these meetings virtually when possible. While concerns about infections may be reduced for those who have been vaccinated, some of the options for virtual closings may still be preferable, since they may allow a closing to be completed more quickly, easily, and efficiently.

A virtual closing or eClosing may involve any methods of signing or filing documents electronically, and these closings may consist of:

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Round Lake Bankruptcy AttorneyHomeowners may experience financial difficulties that affect their ability to make mortgage payments. The COVID-19 pandemic has led to hardship for many homeowners, and government programs have been implemented to provide homeowners with relief. In some cases, a homeowner may qualify for forbearance, which will allow them to temporarily pause or reduce mortgage payments. Homeowners who have received forbearances will need to understand how this will affect their ability to sell their home

Addressing Forbearances During a Real Estate Transaction

A homeowner can request a forbearance if they experience financial hardship, and a mortgage lender may agree to defer a certain number of mortgage payments, or a person’s monthly payments may be reduced temporarily. However, it is important to understand that these amounts will need to be paid at a later date. Depending on the details of a forbearance agreement, a balloon payment may be added to the end of a loan, or a payment plan may be created in which the amount that is due will be paid off in addition to ongoing mortgage payments. A homeowner may also be able to negotiate loan modifications that will allow them to make affordable payments as they pay off their mortgage and any additional amounts that are due.

If a person chooses to sell their home after receiving a forbearance, they will need to be sure to fully understand the amount that will be due on their mortgage. If a balloon payment was added to the end of the loan, this amount will need to be paid in addition to the loan’s principal. To ensure that the sale price of the home will fully cover the amount due on the mortgage, a homeowner can request a payoff statement from their lender. This will provide them with a full understanding of the amount that will need to be paid to release the mortgage lien. 

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libertyville real estate lawyerMany families have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, and those who have experienced financial difficulties may have struggled to pay ongoing expenses, including rent. To help protect families from losing their homes and being put at risk of infections, the federal government placed a moratorium on evictions, and multiple state governments did the same. A recent Supreme Court decision ended the federal eviction moratorium, but Illinois’ moratorium is still in effect, and Governor J.B. Pritzker has stated that it will be extended through October 3, 2021. Landlords with tenants who have been unable to pay rent will need to understand their options, including determining whether they may be able to perform evictions or use lease modifications.

Availability of Emergency Rental Assistance

Tenants who have struggled to pay rent and landlords facing financial difficulties due to the inability to collect rent payments may qualify for emergency rental assistance (ERA) provided by state and local programs, including the Illinois Rental Payment Program. The Biden administration and the Treasury Department have implemented new rules meant to ensure that people who qualify for ERA can receive relief quickly. These include:

  • A household can use self-attestation to document eligibility for ERA, including providing information about the income earned by family members, the reasons a family has experienced financial hardship, and whether they face the risk of homelessness or housing instability.

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