201510.07
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NJ Borrowers Leave 96% of Foreclosures Uncontested

NJ Borrowers Leave 96% of Foreclosures Uncontested

99 homes poster

“99 Homes” dramatizes what happens in the eviction and foreclosure process in Florida. Overall one in every 539 housing units in New Jersey had a foreclosure filing in August, the third highest rate in the country.

With over 95% of foreclosure cases going uncontested many homeowners may feel New Jersey’s housing recovery is still in crisis mode despite CFPB’s Richard Cordray’s optimistic testimony to the House Committee on Financial Services on September 29, 2015.

  • N.J. foreclosure rate again ranks among top in U.S. as repossessions spike to 295% in August
  • Nearly 1,800 properties in New Jersey were repossessed by lenders in August.
  • Homeowners who are unaware of their rights, and overwhelmed by the process don’t contest a foreclosure complaint.
  • New Jersey borrowers are contesting only 4 percent of foreclosure cases, according to the state Administrative Office of the Courts.

Homeowners may also be unaware that foreclosures completed in New Jersey during the second quarter of 2015 took an average of 1,206 days to be resolved, according to RealtyTrac, an Irvine, CA, real-estate analytics firm. Time is on the side of the homeowner, but only if they take action. There are numerous situations where a homeowner has rights that a lender, bank or loan servicing company must follow.

These are some of the situations that homeowners may find themselves in where their rights have been violated and an attorney’s understanding of  NJ state law as well as Federal laws would be needed.

      • Payments not being accepted by a loan servicing company
      • Payments not being recorded correctly by a servicing company or lender
      • Being told to go into default in order to get a refinance.
      • Denial of  a loan modification without proper explanation.

Just as every family and every home is different, so are the circumstances that have led to the financial hardship leading up to default and foreclosure. This is why it is important for a homeowner to get a consultation with an attorney to learn what they don’t know. Many intelligent and educated people make the mistake of finding blogs, articles on the web and in trying to make sense of them, operate out of a false sense of fear or hope.

It is important to get the facts about your specific case, so that you can make the best decision and be able to get past a difficulty from which may people don’t recover. Below are three articles to read at length with relevant details excerpted.

Written Testimony of CFPB Director Richard Cordray Before the House Committee on Financial Services

CFPB Director, Richard Cordray

CFPB Director, Richard Cordray

“Congress created the Bureau in response to the financial crisis with the purpose and sole focus of protecting consumers in the financial marketplace. We understand our responsibility to stand on the side of consumers and ensure they are treated fairly.

As we continue our work, consumer financial markets are showing increasing signs of health. For example, the latest Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) data, released by federal agencies last week, shows increasing numbers of consumers are taking out mortgages. In 2014, the first year of our new mortgage rules, mortgage originations for owner-occupied home purchases increased between four and five percent. The upward trend appears to have accelerated over the first half of this year.”

N.J. foreclosure rate again ranks among top in U.S. as repossessions spike – By Erin O’Neill | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com 

nj boa foreclosure“While the number of homes entering the foreclosure process in New Jersey fell in August from a year ago, data released on Thursday shows that overall foreclosure activity still rose in the state because of a big spike in bank repossessions.

The state’s foreclosure rate again ranked near the top in the country last month, according to report from the Irvine, Calif.-based housing firm RealtyTrac. Only Nevada and Maryland posted higher rates in August.

More than 2,760 properties in New Jersey started the foreclosure process in August, a 38 percent decrease from a year ago. But, meanwhile, nearly 1,800 properties in New Jersey were repossessed by lenders last month. That’s an increase of 295 percent from a year ago, according to the RealtyTrac data.

Overall one in every 539 housing units in New Jersey had a foreclosure filing in August, the third highest rate in the country. New Jersey, which has a judicial foreclosure process, has consistently ranked near or at the top in the country for its foreclosure rate in recent reports.”

Foreclosures Continue to Ensnare NJ Families – – Along with at least One Law Firm By  | NJspotlight.com  SEPTEMBER 17, 2015

“Foreclosures completed in New Jersey during the second quarter of 2015 took an average of 1,206 days to be resolved, according to RealtyTrac, an Irvine, CA, real-estate analytics firm. That was almost twice the national average, which itself was the longest since the company began keeping the statistic eight years ago.

The process can be wearing on families, especially those who feel they have been defrauded. Those with financial resources remaining can fight in the state courts, which must approve foreclosures. The action is not complete until a foreclosing lender conveys the property at a sale administered by the county sheriff.

But borrowers are not the only ones who can be ground down if a case crawls.

 Zucker, Goldberg & Ackerman

In August, Zucker, Goldberg & Ackerman of Mountainside followed through on a previous warning and filed for bankruptcy.

One of New Jersey’s pre-eminent foreclosure law firms had been handling the current cases against Evans on behalf of JP Morgan Chase, and against Turner on behalf of Wells Fargo. But in August, Zucker, Goldberg & Ackerman of Mountainside followed through on a previous warning and filed for bankruptcy.

The attorney representing the firm in bankruptcy, Daniel Stolz of Wasserman, Jurista & Stolz of Basking Ridge, blamed complications in foreclosure cases, including although not limited to “the extent of the robo-signing.”

The complexities of documenting cases “caused additional delays and expenses that substantially harmed Zucker, Goldberg,” Stolz said.

Since home ownership peaked in the United States in 2014, foreclosures have taken more than 7.8 million houses, according to RealtyTrac. That has meant big business for law firms representing lenders and investors. Last year, Zucker, Goldberg generated $30 million in gross revenue.

But the flip side is that the firm normally took those cases for a flat fee. When they moved promptly, that was a safe play. So far this year, New Jersey borrowers are contesting only 4 percent of foreclosure cases, according to the state Administrative Office of the Courts.”

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DenbeauxMedia
Formed in 1989, Denbeaux & Denbeaux is a law firm dedicated to providing top level legal representation to its clients. The partners, Marcia Denbeaux and Joshua Denbeaux, as well as senior and associate attorneys, represent individuals and businesses in New Jersey State and Federal Courts.