Foreclosure Help in Florida
Sunny Florida is a judicial foreclosure state. This means that banks and other parties wishing to foreclose on a home must take the case to court and receive judicial approval before doing so. This is a new law passed in 2013, and means that foreclosure cases will involve legal aspects. Before diving further into the legal side of things, let’s take a look at the broader homeownership landscape in Florida.
Home-ownership in Florida fell by nearly ten percent from the recession until today, to record lows. This stands alongside a generally optimistic outlook on the part of consumers towards buying, with around fifty percent of consumers indicating that now is a good time to buy a house, and less than 20% describing it is a poor time to do so. Respondents to this survey listed favorable mortgage rates as a primary reason for their optimistic view of the situation. This may change in the near future if the Fed decides to adjust interest rates, but for now it indicates a seller’s market in Florida.
Income and housing costs
Another fact worth noting is that Florida ranks 49th in the United States for income inequality, with the top 1% of Florida earners bringing in more than $1.5 million yearly, and the other 99 just over $50,000. This plays out in stark regional differences, with a few key counties and metro areas indicating a high concentration of top earners, and others serving as clusters of lower incomes. Although Florida’s average rental prices are only slightly above the national average, this income skew is significant for homeowners to consider, as it means they should take special account of where their property is located and how it stacks up in Florida’s uneven landscape of wealth.
If you are facing foreclosure in Florida or hope to inform yourself about available resources, here are a few:
- (888) 995-HOPE: a counseling phone service offering free foreclosure avoidance advice
- educate yourself here, with information from the Florida office of the attorney general about your rights, available resources, and the legal specificities of foreclosure
- or access the HUD’s website, which offers a list of regional organizations, legal information, and workshops to help avoid foreclosure
As Florida is a judicial foreclosure state, it is particularly important for homeowners to begin by taking time to carefully inform themselves of their rights, responsibilities, and the legal conditions of foreclosure, as all foreclosure cases will involve legal proceedings, and perhaps lawyers – the latter of which can become very costly.
Have a specific question about Avoiding Foreclosure in Florida? Check out our Foreclosure FAQ’s section.