There has been excellent advice posted here already, so I would reiterate that more information on your specific situation would be needed in order to give better info, but I will add a few general points. Sometimes if the second lien is small (under $5,000) then the first mortgage holder may elect to simply pay it off at closing rather then going to the time and expense of re-foreclosing on the property to remove the lien. Or if you are getting a good enough deal on the property you may decide to settle with the second lien holder yourself to get the deal closed. Depending on who holds the lien they may take a reduced payoff if they realize that they will get nothing if the first mortgage holder re-forecloses the property. It all comes down to time and money. I had a similar situation last week and a $2,000 second lien was discovered. The seller (the bank that foreclosed on the property) decided it was in their interest to just go ahead and pay the lien to get the deal done, maybe your deal will work out as easy as that too. Good luck!