Posts tagged ‘foreclosure’

June 10, 2011

What are a Tenant’s Rights when his Home is in Foreclosure?

Many Anthem residential tenants have become victims of their landlord’s inability to pay their mortgages.  When a landlord fails to pay the amount due on a mortgage, banks have the option to foreclose on the property rented.  One result in this situation is that the new owner of the property may evict the tenant.

A tenant who is evicted from an Arizona residence because of a foreclosure may have a claim against their landlord for damages.  The general rule in Arizona is that if a tenant has is current on their rent but is evicted, in part, because the bank foreclosed on the landlord’s interest in the property, the landlord has breached the lease because of the premature termination of the tenant’s lease.  In other words, the tenant had the right to possession of the home and the original landlord is liable for the damages the tenant suffers because of the eviction.

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December 15, 2010

The Lights of Anthem

The Holiday Season is usually associated as being a time of peace, love, and goodwill. Unfortunately for too many people, the holidays can instead be a time of stress, too much commotion, loneliness, and financial instability. This may be especially true today with a poor economy resulting in the loss of jobs, foreclosures, and even bankruptcy for many. Perhaps instead, it is a good time to re-evaluate how we can better use our resources this holiday season.

Albert Schweitzer said, “Sometimes our light goes out but is blown into flame by another human being. Each of us owes deepest thanks to those who have rekindled this light.” If you look around the community of Anthem, you will see many lights shining. The summer of 2010 found 12 women joining with Habitat for Humanity to begin framing a new home, and the project is now nearing completion. Girl Scout Troop 242 sponsored the Holiday Extravaganza with Santa and Mrs. Claus which was free to families when they donated food items to the local food bank. Water 4 Kids International Baseball Classic is getting ready to sponsor their 2nd Anthem baseball tournament with proceeds going to Uganda, Africa, to build a well for the local villagers. Also local volunteers prepared 150 sack lunches, 150 toiletry bags, and provided and delivered 200 blankets for the homeless in downtown Phoenix. These are just a few examples of the incredible projects going on in our very own community!!

When our lives are not exactly as we had planned them to be, maybe the best thing that we can do for ourselves is to look around and see how we can become the light for someone else. We do not have to spend money we don’t have, but we all have been given various talents and time. That may be the best gift we can give. This holiday season find a worthy cause and become involved. For a town the size of Anthem’s, there is definitely something for everyone. We are so fortunate to live in a community whose light shines for all to see.

November 1, 2010

A House is Not a Home

This summer, “The Great Recession” achieved another sobering record when the number of initial home foreclosure notices pumped out by those bank “robo-signers” hit the one million mark, and that was for this summer alone! Millions have already lost their homes and in Arizona one out of 55 homes have received foreclosure notices, with the numbers still rising at an alarming rate. No one has been able to predict when the foreclosure crisis will end, and the gloomiest prognosticators see us sliding into another Depression. Washington politicians are stagnated by the polarization of the political process and they seem more content to have the economy fail so as to be able to blame the other party as opposed to working together to craft a solution.

In light of what is happening in the nation, and even more so in our Arizona communities, each of us knows someone that is losing there their house to foreclosure. If real estate values do not start to rise soon, it is only a question of time before many more of us may be forced to walk away from the place we have been living. I deal with families every day that are making the difficult decision to walk away from the place that they had intended to live out their remaining years. In Anthem, many of our residents purchased their “Dream House” and upgraded it with all the amenities so as to enjoy life to the fullest. Ultimately, rapidly declining real estate values and loss of income have turned the “Dream House” into a financial ball and chain that residents ultimately must flee to avoid total economic ruination. Arizona’s generous anti-deficiency laws effectively allow most residents to leave their houses and crippling mortgage payments behind and continue their lives, albeit at a greatly scaled down standard of living.

Having counseled hundreds of people through this process of home foreclosure, I can tell those of you faced with the prospect this: “You will survive a foreclosure, and in many cases your family will benefit by the process!!!!!!” How can that be? The answer lies in the resiliency of the family and the ability to understand and accept the fact that A HOUSE IS NOT A HOME!!!!!

Webster’s defines a house as “a building that serves as living quarters”, and there is no dispute that we all need to have a place to live. However, consider the definition of the word home, which is “the social unit formed by a family together.” If you are a “homeowner” in the true meaning of the word, no bank or mortgage company can ever take away your “home.” The bank may have a lien on your house, but only your heart has a lien on your home, and it is that realization that will get you through these difficult times! Do not let creditor calls or threatening legal notices cause you to forget what your truly greatest asset is, the caring love of that social unit we call a “family”. When the court proceedings end, and the movers finished packing up your worldly possessions, you may not own the house you thought would be the source of your joy in future years. Instead you realize that you true source of joy we be with you no matter where you reside. Many families that have gone through this unfortunate process are actually thankful that they were able to learn such a valuable lesson. Remember the prophetic words of no other than Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, “THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME!”