In our market these time frames are longer. Many homeowners might try to sell the house before it finally 'goes back to the bank' in general this is a short sale. Usually the statement that a house is in pre foreclosure means that it is a short sale.
In simple terms, it means its in the process of foreclosure. It has not been foreclosed upon yet and the owner still may be able to retain title by paying off the debt but pre-foreclosure means just that it's not foreclosed upon yet :)
A "pre-foreclosure" is:
1) A period prior to an actual foreclosure where a homeowner has a certain amount of time to either pay the default or sell the property.
2) A term used to define the status of a property ("Short Sale" may also be used) where the defaulting borrower is attempting to sell the property which allows a defaulting borrower to satisfy the loan commitment (typically, at less than is owed) to avoid an actual foreclosure.
Typically, the non-judicial (i.e. Trustee) foreclosure process takes about 3 months, 3 weeks and 3 days (starting with the Notice of Default and ending with the Trustee sale/auction on the County Courthouse steps). However, currently, lenders are taking more time than this to complete a foreclosure due to the volume they are facing.
If nobody buys the home during the Trustee sale/auction (including the lender themselves) the home becomes the lenderâ€™s property. Lenders who end up with properties contract with local Realtors to list the property on the MLS (a small percentage also forward the property to an auction company for liquidation). Until a home is actually foreclosed it is considered a pre-foreclosure. This is due to the fact the owner may cure the default, secure a loan modification, or close on a Short Sale.
Just because they are showing as pre forclosure does not mean that they for sure will be foreclosed upon.
Hope this helps.