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Can I sell my home to avoid repossession?

Property Saviour » Mortgages » Can I sell my home to avoid repossession?

Yes, you can certainly sell your house before repossession. 

If you’re behind on payments, you’re not alone. Taking action quickly is the best way to keep your home – or, at least, to sell it on your own terms and get a better financial situation than if your house were repossessed.

The goal is to prevent repossession, so before diving into how that process works, here are some tips to help you stop it from happening.

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How to stop repossession of your home?

Our tips to help stop repossession:

Seek independent advice.

Many housing charities provide free, unbiased advice to aid you in finding the best decision for you and the steps you will need to take.

Shelter is one such charity that deals with housing matters, but it may also be beneficial to contact your local Citizens Advice Bureau.

Contact your mortgage lender immediately 

If you’re going to fall into arrears, contact your mortgage lender as soon as possible. It may be scary, but facing the issue head-on is the best way to deal with it.

Mortgage lenders are often more helpful and understanding than you may think, and it is actually in their best interest for you to keep your home and keep making payments rather than repossessing it.

So get in touch as soon as you know you cannot make your next payment or if you are already in arrears. If you are only facing temporary financial trouble, you may be able to take a mortgage holiday or make your payment a few days later.

Just make sure to talk to them as soon as you can and explain your situation. Mortgage lenders have a legal obligation to help you, and they also want to avoid repossession.  They have to give you forbearance to buy you time to settle your affairs.

If it appears that you will be unable to recover from arrears and your financial situation will not improve, it is important to know how the repossession process works. But remember that you will still have options to avoid it.

How does the house repossession process work? 

The steps from arrears to repossession are quite simple.

  1. You’ll go into arrears with your lender.
  2. If you do not pay off the arrears, your lender will take legal action.
  3. The court will then schedule a hearing, where a judge will decide if your house should or should not be repossessed.
  4. If you are not present at the hearing, the judge is likely to make an immediate possession order. If you do attend, the court will consider your case and make a decision. This could be a possession order or a suspended order, where you agree to pay off the arrears.
  5. If you breach your suspended order, bailiffs can come to your house. If this happens, repossession will take place, and the lender will sell your home.
  6. You also have the option of voluntary repossession. This involves giving your keys back to the lender and moving out of your property so they can sell it and pay off the outstanding mortgage balance. You are still responsible for mortgage interest, building insurance and maintenance costs until it is sold.
Can I sell my home to avoid repossession
If you are only facing temporary financial trouble, you may be able to take a mortgage holiday or make your payment a few days later.

Can I Choose Voluntary Repossession?

If you can’t pay your mortgage, don’t just hand the keys back to your lender. This is called voluntary repossession and should be a last resort.

Waiting until you get evicted, and your lender takes you to court to repossess your home is not a good option either. Both of these should be avoided if possible.

What happens if my home is repossessed?

If your home is repossessed, your lenders will be looking to retrieve their money as soon as possible. They usually do this by selling your house at an auction, which typically means it is sold for less than its market value.

You will be responsible for paying your lender’s legal fees, arrears, penalties and any associated costs of selling your house. Often, this leaves people still owing money to their lenders, making it even harder to pay back.

If you have the time and capacity, selling your house can give you more control. You may choose to sell it for less than market value to facilitate a quicker sale, but at least you have control over how much less.

If my house is repossessed, will I get any money back?

Often, the answer is no. By the time the lender has sold your house (most of the time for less than its market value), and taken their legal fees, any fees for selling the house, arrears, and penalty payments, it is more likely that you will end up owing money.

Should I sell my house before repossession? 

It is advisable to seek legal advice before making any decisions, but selling your property before it is repossessed is more beneficial.

You can complete a quick house sale, which will help you avoid making any more payments, and you can sell your house quickly and avoid the repossession process.

What happens if you sell your house and still owe money UK
It is advisable to seek legal advice before making any decisions, but it is more beneficial to sell your property before it is repossessed.

Can I Sell My House Quickly?

If you’re looking to sell your home to avoid repossession, the Property Saviour website is the perfect place to be. We specialise in quick house sales and will work with you to make the process as stress-free as possible.

Don’t leave it to the last minute and become a distressed seller.

If you’re unsure what the best option for you is, our team of experienced property experts are available to provide you with the best advice for your situation.

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