Scott's answer covered some good points. Other points that are specific to California and Riverside (and you are advised to check with an attorney, as I am not one):
1. State of California passed a law that gives Tenants in a property taken back by the bank through foreclosure a minimum 60 days notice to move. You must not be on title on the property in order to qualify as a Tenant.
2. Some banks and their real estate agents will try to pressure you into moving out sooner. Refer them to the law.
3. Definitely ask for cash for keys. This will help you with your moving expenses.
4. Here is a new BENEFIT for tenants I am hearing about. If you are renting a home (not a condo or townhome), and since you are in Riverside County where there is a high incidence of foreclosures, and assuming you can live with people walking through your home once it is listed, I am hearing of tenants negotiating to stay in the home until it sells. These people are negotiating to maintain the home, keep the yard green and trimmed, and allow property viewings during reasonable hours and in exchange they are allowed to stay in the home rent free or for very reduced rents until it sells. In California, the lender is responsible for maintaining the property, not letting it deteriorate and damage the image of the community. Negotiating to maintain the property in exchange for free or reduced rent could be a win-win for both you and the REO lender.
I am sorry to hear that your home is being sold out from underneath you. Remember, sometimes what starts out looking bad can end up turning into a good thing. Let me know if I can be of any assistance to you in your attempts at negotiating to stay in the property, or if I can help you find a property to call your own once you have to move. Dare to Dream.
Real Estate Consultant
RE/MAX Palos Verdes Realty