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Ann-Marie Ba…,  in Atlanta, GA

Bought house on courthouse steps

Asked by Ann-Marie Bailey, Atlanta, GA Wed May 30, 2012

Bought house on courthouse steps. Now 3 months later not received deed from Nationstar bank. Cash buyer contract waiting, had to give a $5K price reduction to extend contract to 6/1/12. Still no idea from attorney/bank when deed is forthcocming.
Can the bank be legally made to pay for my loss, especially if buyer terminates after June 1st? Can't find any laws addressing time limit for seller to produce deed after sale.

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Welcome to the University of hard knocks. As someone earlier mentioned it is always risky when buying on the courthouse steps. This risk is why you may have bought at a significant discount allowing you to potentially profit. The greater the prospective gain the higher the real risk. While in most instances a deed is delivered within a month it can take 2-6 months, ultimately the property may have title issues not discovered by the foreclosing attorney that take time to resolve or may not be able to resolved. You should have done a full title search prior to bidding, hopefully you did. Buying on the steps should be the domain of very sophisticated and experienced investors, they are aware of the risks associated with title, and are able to whether the risks and uncertainties of this type of transaction. Ultimately successful investing is not about getting the great returns it is correctly managing risk. Over my career, I have run across many people burned by purchasing in the courthouse steps. It is a difficult way to go.

Bruce Ailion,
RE/MAX Greater Atlanta
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1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed May 30, 2012
Noone should EVER EVER buy at auction without advice (at least o9n their first one) from a attorny versed in that subject. Its fraught with poetntial problems. In Calif, I wouldnteven buy a $1,000,000 for a nickle without a COMPLETE understanding of the process and various laws, especially consumer protection. You may buy it but you can lose it too. You should have known the process before bidding.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed May 30, 2012
The attorney who conducted the foreclosure should have filed the Deed Under Power in the county where the foreclosure was done. I would contact the foreclosing attorney and see what has happened. Also check the county deed room to see if for some reason the Deed Under Power was filed and you just didn't get a copy of it. Normally these are done within 30 days of the foreclosure sale.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed May 30, 2012
I'm glad to hear you performed due diligence for your courthouse steps purchase. It's unfortunate you had to give your buyer $ to extend the closing but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. : ) Hopefully your buyer will still keep hanging in there as we all know lenders work on their own time frame. That being said, perhaps your own attorney or title co can put pressure on the foreclosing attorney's firm to speed things up for you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jun 3, 2012
Thanks everyone for your generous responses. I did my due diligence before buying and know title is clean. The delay appears to be due to volume of foreclosures on the bank's end, made worse by the fact that an emergency on my part does not constitute one on theirs.

My question posted mainly to find out whether anyone else had found a way to force the banks to move more quickly. There appears to be no time limit, per se, for seller to produce deed, except for the new requirement for banks to record foreclosure deeds in a timely manner (I believe 3 months), for accountability with property upkeep.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 31, 2012
You are unfortunately, at the mercy of the Sellers. This appears to be a common issue when banks hold foreclosure sales.

By the way, one possible solution is to have the attorneys who handled the foreclosure sale solve the problem. Contact me for details..
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 30, 2012
Ann, I've noticed that when it's a busy season in the real estate business, it takes the county a bit longer to record the deeds. The typical timeframe (in my experience) is 1 to 2 months, but I've noticed that it can be 3 or 4 months with foreclosure properties.

I would take Margaret's advice below and contact the foreclosure closing attorney to get an update and also contact the county deed recording office.

Best of luck to you!
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 30, 2012
Sounded good, be a contract vendee? Not so easy I guess...
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 30, 2012
Ann, it's normal that the time frame on a foreclosure at times takes a while to get a recorded deed in the name of the bank that has foreclosed. That is more likely your hold up. They can not deed to you until their deed is recorded. Once the deed gets recorded then they will be able to deed it to you. As far as your buyer maybe you can get them to agree to an extension if you find that this is the reason. At least the buyer knows your not trying to scam them out of their money. Just as you found that buyer your sure to find another one if he/she walks. I know you would like to get this over with, but it could be a several months to rectify.

As for receiving monetary solution from the seller/bank, I am unable to comment on that and you would need to direct that question to a real estate attorney.

Thank you in Advance

REO's, & Short Sale Specialist
Atlantic & Pacific Real Estate (US), LLC
2078 Teron Trace. Ste 250
Dacula, GA 30019
O 678-804-6104
D 678-697-5119
O-Fax 678-804-6068
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 30, 2012
Reach out to Richard Miller from Morris Hardwick Schneider at rmiller at (just in case of spammers!). He is dealing with the same deed issue right now for a fellow agent and is an awesome closing attorney!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 30, 2012
Always risky buying at the court house!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 30, 2012

You absolutely need to contact an attorney who specializes in real estate and who is familiar with homes purchased at auction.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 30, 2012
Ann, you really need to speak to an attorney about this. Any Realtor who gives you legal advice is leading you down the wrong path. Talk to a Real Estate attorney asap
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 30, 2012
This is a question outside of the scope of real estate agents. You need to speak with a real estate attorney regarding this.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 30, 2012
Thanks Terry. Tried that route first but attorneys I called didn't have a definite answer...they had never had to address the issue, or something like that. Was hoping an agent has come across this before and how they handled it.
Flag Wed May 30, 2012
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