BC-glink 01/05 TMS Original

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

REAL ESTATE MATTERS For release 01/05/14

(NOTICE: For retransmission or other content delivery inquiries, please contact TCA Customer Service, 1-800-346-8798,

Redress after 'erroneous' foreclosure

Tribune Content Agency

By Ilyce Glink and Samuel J. Tamkin

Q: I was a victim of an erroneous mortgage foreclosure by a lender. They foreclosed on my condominium and there were many errors in the process. The independent review board agreed and sent me a check for $6,000. The money was great, but my credit is shot! I appealed to the Consumer Protection Agency and the told me to contact the lender directly. I did contact them but they responded that they just report the facts. What can be done?

A: Upon reading your question, we were puzzled by your statement that you were a victim of an erroneous mortgage foreclosure. Did you mean that the lender had no right to foreclose on your home or that they had the right but failed to proceed with the foreclosure properly.

(To answer your question, we'll have to make a bunch of assumptions -- with the acknowledgment that we might not be right about everything. But there are millions of homeowners who have walked the same mile that inform these assumptions.)

We'll start with the assumption that your lender foreclosed on you as a result of the Great Recession and your failure to make payments to your lender under your mortgage. We will then assume that your lender failed to take the proper steps to foreclose on your home.

The lender either failed to file the property paperwork, had errors in the paperwork, failed to notify you properly, delivered faulty documents to the court or proceeded with the foreclosure rushing it through the system. For these errors -- deliberate or otherwise -- you were given a payment of $6,000.

Given this situation, you lost your home in foreclosure and the lender reported the foreclosure to the credit reporting bureaus. Whether the foreclosure had errors or not, the relevant fact is that your lender foreclosed on the home. That foreclosure was then reported to the credit reporting bureaus. While we appreciate that lenders should have proceeded through with foreclosures properly and using care without errors, they still have the right to report those foreclosures to the bureaus.

Now, if your lender should not have foreclosed on your home and did so in error, you should have received more than $6,000 for this issue. If you paid your loan on time and the lender had no right to foreclose, you lost your home, you lost any equity you had in your home, you were forced to pack and move and probably had many other expenses and costs relating to their actions against you. In this situation, we would sympathize with your situation and it would seem to us that the lender should not have reported your foreclosure to the credit reporting bureaus.

We think you might want to consult with an attorney that concentrates his or her practice in consumer advocacy issues. If the lender should not have ever foreclosed on your home, you may have other rights and claims against the lender, and may have other rights and claims against the lender for the reporting as well.

This would be the time to find out.

As for your credit, time is a great healer. Many lenders are now loaning money to former homeowners who have had bankruptcies as recently as two years ago. Keep paying all of your bills on time while you pursue these other avenues, and you should be able to get more credit in a relatively short period of time.

Good luck.

(Ilyce Glink is the creator of an 18-part webinar and ebook series called "The Intentional Investor: How to be wildly successful in real estate," as well as the author of many books on real estate. She also hosts the "Real Estate Minute," on her channel. If you have questions, you can call her radio show toll-free (800-972-8255) any Sunday, from 11a-1p EST. Contact Ilyce and Sam through her website,