Babs De Lay
Rio Tinto, a British mining company with over 67,000 employees worldwide has just announced that it's going to be giving furloughs and early retirements to many of the 2100 people who work at their Bingham open pit copper mine. Many of those folks live in Magna and towns south of there at the base of the Oquirrh's (Goshute for 'wooded mountains') and They will be affected greatly if the mine stays closed for a long time, as will surrounding businesses.
Magna was settled in the 1850's and 60's by Mormon pioneers who called their town Pleasant Green. One of the first folks there was a guy named Abraham Coon who homesteaded a cattle ranch he called 'Coonville' at the mouth of a canyon about 5400 South at the base of the mountains there. Locals today know it as Coon Canyon, which has Coon Creek running out of it, through Magna, to the Great Salt Lake. Early citizens of the town were mostly immigrants from Eastern Europe, and the website www.magnautah.com says that "Magna developed a reputation for embodying the American dream-being a town where immigrants' children gained an education and often moved into professional, business and civic leadership roles in and outside the community.
In 1890 a law was passed that all kids were to receive free educations, and a small one-room school for all grades was built about 4100 South and 8450 West. In the early 1900's D.C. Jackling established the Utah Copper Company, later becoming what we all know as Kennecott Copper Corp. His company is the one that started digging the now-gigantic open pit mine that has collapsed. They called it 'Magna Mill' from the Latin word meaning "great or superior".
Another mine popped up called 'Boston Consolidated' and soon merged with Utah Copper Co. The workers (remember back then-most folks couldn't afford cars) had to be pretty close to the mine and mills surrounding them. Many lived in a tent city called 'Ragtown' just north of the Webster School there today. It was the post office that made 'Pleasant Green' change its name to Magna, as the former moniker was too similar to Pleasant Grove. Just like other mining towns like Helper and Price, Utah, workers walked to their jobs-and the towns that did spring up were pedestrian friendly with houses built close to the street amongst churches, saloons, fraternal halls (ELKS, EAGLES, etc.), stores, shops. In Magna there were ethnic sections of the city called "Snaketown, Japtown and Little Italy".
As brick kilns began popping up in the Valley, citizens were able to begin building more permanent housing. The town grew as the mines grew, and housing started spreading east to West Valley and South. Copperton sprung up in 1926-built by the Utah Copper Company exclusively for its employees and remains the only mining town specifically created for miners- except for Lark, Utah (torn town in 1980 due to mine expansion). In the 1960's when the dynamite manufacturer "Hercules" started producing rocket motors just south of Magna, the voters approved a bond for sewage and water plants and the town just about doubled in size. By then people in Magna pretty much all had their own cars and they began venturing out of the city to shop and work. Downtown Magna started to fade. But with the new library on Main Street and the sausage pioneers "Colosimos", still there, it's a sweet town with a rural feel right outside the Capitol City of salt. Magna is about a 15 minute drive to downtown Salt Lake City and has some of the most affordable housing in the Salt Lake Valley. Last year homes there were selling for $109,400. This year, they've jumped 27.9% to $139,950 (WFRMLS). We'll see how the layoffs affect the housing there in the next 12 months.
The crocus is up and it’s time for home and garden shows at expo centers and massive sales displays at your favorite home improvement stores. St. George had their Parade of Homes last month, Salt Lake and Utah Valley’s Parades of Homes come in early Summer and Cashe Valley usually puts one together in September. You can shop your to your heart’s desire for all the design trends in home construction. Here’s what I’ve been noticing in and outside new homes in the past few years that you will certainly see more of at home shows and garden centers:
INSIDE-Colors: Oh thank God. I swear, Utahn’s in general have the worst taste in décor. I see a bazillion homes a year and am so pleased when I’m able to take buyers into a house that has been well decorated with color instead of the usual taupe or pewter blue walls. Every year there is a color announced to the world, the Pantone choice that sets all trends in fashion and design. This year it’s Emerald Green. You can’t paint your whole home this color unless you’re a leprechaun, but you certainly can use it for accents in pillows, furniture and and/or a single wall.
The TV box: TV screens for actual television, movies or gaming are multiplying in homes like rabbits. They are in the bedrooms, baths, living areas and garage workshops. The first time I saw a TV screen in a bath room I knew the world was ending. Now that I understand much of our youth go home and play killing games for fun on the game console for hours every night, I can see why designers are building movie-house like rooms in virtually every new home they build.
Baths and Kitchens: Home shows are where you go and ‘ooooh and ahhhh’ over amazing appliances, like touch screen wine coolers for your private stash and fantastic colored refrigerators and stoves (like in the Utah ‘Up’ house). I don’t often plug stores in this column, but check out the sales rooms of Mountainland Design to get your cooking ‘want’ fix. I have gone to fundraisers at their showroom and paid no attention to the festivities as I walked around and touched every handmade sink. Also, knobs are IN. Star Hardware in Salt Lake specializes in just knobs and pulls. They can be really expensive or rather a good buy, and are a great way to add color/design to a ho-hum bunch of cabinets.
OUTSIDE: Gardens are in. Recycling is in (as it should be). I find many home buyers want some kind of small garden, a ‘Utah salsa garden’ with a tomato or two, cilantro, and a pepper plant. Gardening trends are for mixes of flowers and vegetables and more raised beds for old farts like me to play in so we don’t have to bend down too far! Also folks are going back to the idea that grandpa had… to build a permanent cooking and prep area right in the back yard for summer fun. That coupled with a trend back to large screened in porches and shaded seating areas, backyard living is back. You can always get terrific outside furniture at places like Leisure Living but find a mason or rock worker to help you build a groovy BBQ with gas.
Chickens are also very popular now, and legal. Non-profit Wasatch Community Gardens sponsors the annual ‘Tour De Coups’ of local back yard chicken coops. There are some fabulously crazy artists out there building homes for their feathered friends. This non-profit sponsors so many classes and events, check them out at www.wasatchgardens.org.
OMG we survived yet another government scare. Are you getting as jaded as I am about these life or death financial government deadlines? Here we are again, all safe and sound. What B.S. Another Band-Aid has been stuck over the icky, gooey, stanky pile of government economic bandages and our national debt grows higher ($140 million a minute) and political pork fat grows thicker. Oy vey.
I'll fess up. My industry represents the largest trade organization in the United States. Most of the work of Realtors that you don't hear about is lobbying local and national officials to back off of unfair taxes and protect personal property rights. That's the goal at least. Oddly enough it would seem in a Republican state that the biggest Board of REALTORS would only give money to Republic candidates and Republican causes. Actually, we're a pretty fair group. As long as a wanna be politician mumbles, "protect your property rights and no more taxes" our Board in Salt Lake City will throw money at you no matter what your party affiliation might be. Our national lobbyists helped at least three items survive this most recent economic cliff:
1) deduction of mortgage insurance premiums from your tax return STAYS if you make less than $100k per year. Remember, for most of us, a part of our mortgage payment each month goes towards insuring the lender that you won't default on your loan;
2) Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act of 2007. This was a law put in by George W. Bush in his final year of leaving the country in an economic nightmare. It was a good law and it's been extended until January 2014. Basically it means homeowners who got a debt reduction through a mortgage forgiveness in a short sale or modification don't have to pay taxes on that amount. Before 2007, if you owed $300K, sold your home for $200K, the IRS would tax you on the $100K difference. Boooooooo (that noise Carol Kane made in the "Princess Bride" movie).
Since 2007 the IRS couldn't tax you and that's been extended. Why extend? Why not just make it a LAW the IRS cannot tax you on your loss?
Sorry, I guess I'm not that smart to offer up a solution to something so obviously wrong.
3) the final real estate-related victory pertains mostly to people who earn more than $400k and make more than $250K on the sale of a primary residence. The capital gains taxes have changed for you, so make sure if you sold a home last year or if you're selling a higher end house this year make sure you talk to your CPA about this little change. It could mean a good amount of money for you to keep in your pocket.
4) the mortgage interest deduction. This is the amount you deduct each year on your taxes if you own a home and pay interest on a mortgage. If you have, say a $1500 a month payment, the interest you pay each year on that debt could end up being a over $12000 a year and that is what's deducted on your tax return each year. For a single or couple without kids and no other deductions, it's one of the main reasons we buy a home! Some say that only 25% of Americans use this deduction, but for me, it's my only personal tax deduction other than me, myself and I.
Lucky me! I married into a family who summers in Whidbey Island and winters in Baja. Housing is free when we visit the in-laws, and the fresh fish is fantastic in both locales. We spent a week at the end of last month half way between Cabo and La Paz, Mexico and I got an education the in Mexican real estate rules and regs. Just about every Gringo I met on our trip was a real estate agent and I got an earful about property values, sales and purchases besides a tan. When I asked if people had to be licensed to sell homes, folks just laughed at me and said, NO. There are no licensing laws for people who want to sell property in Mexico. My observation is that every other home in the beach cities we visited is FOR SALE. It looks like the recession hit hard in the Baja, probably because so many of the homes are second homes or luxuries. When the market drops, luxuries are often the first things to be liquidated.
Only Mexicans can technically own land and water rights in their country. Foreigners can and do get around the rules, tho as long as 1) there is no foreign ownership with the 100 kilometers of the Mexican border and 50 kilometers of its coasts and 2) foreigners can’t own their land for more than 50 years. Thus, what I just told you means, you can and you can’t own property. If you want to buy a home or a condo in Mexico, you create a trust under the fideicomiso rules. Legal title to the property you buy is held by a Mexican bank who acts as a trustee. You don’t get a deed. The cost to create this agreement is based upon a percentage of the property value at the time of purchase and then an annual trust fee is charged. The buyer usually pays most of the transaction costs-the transfer tax (we don’t have one in Utah, thank heavens), a 2-3% for a notario (more like a lawyer, recorder and title company all in one person). The seller pays the sales commissions, as most common in U.S. real estate transactions.
There aren’t mortgage lenders to be found in beautiful downtown Baja. Interest rates for lending are high. Your options to purchase are: cash, seller financing, or get a loan in the U.S. There are also a trillion ‘time shares’ being sold if you just want to spend a week or two in the same location for the rest of your life. These companies usually offer financing options. The ‘agents’ I spoke with suggested that if you want a time share, purchase it in the U.S. through a reputable company like Marriott where you can trade for other locations around the world if you grow weary of the same condo year in and year out. It’s also easier to track down Marriott employees than the part time, non-licensed agents for Gordo’s Perky Palapa’s outside of Cabo.
Finally, if you do end up buying in Mexico, you can re-sell. The property is also transferable after death to your heirs. There are screaming deals down here if you do have money. My in-laws bought a fixer upper for @$150,000 on the beach in a neighborhood of homes ranging from $1 to $2 million. It needed a new roof and plumbing and paint. The guy next door is for sale for $1.2 million, and he’s been on the market for three years. His house has a faded sign on it-‘Casa De 401K’ with a San Diego number. Feliz Ano Nuevo!
How many of you are snuggled up at night catching up on your BBC Downton Abbey episodes before Season 3 starts in January? Come on, raise your hands. I see a lot of you are like me: love to dress in costume; agree that wearing a tux at night for drinks in the drawing room sounds perfect, jodhpurs are sexy; and that protocol and manners is so lacking these days. And that castle, oh my! Who wouldn’t want to live UPSTAIRS in that place?
That television show is filmed at Highclere Castle, just west of London, England and is the home of the Earl and Countess of Carnarvon. Folks live there in that TV set and you can visit it pretty much year-round. You might recognize the name of the owners family… the 5th Earl of Carnarvon and his friend Howard Carter, discovered the buried tomb of Tutankhamen in Egypt in 1922. The family manse, now castle, started out as a little brick and free stone house and was converted to a classical Georgian mansion in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. It was fully finished to a fine home during the reign of Queen Victoria and it is said that Benjamin Disraeli’s first words on seeing the castle in its pastoral setting were “How scenical! How Scenical!” It was turned into a hospital in 1914 for the troops of WWI, just like in the PBS/BBC series. And the current Countess has published a book on her famous relative (the 5th Countess) entitled ‘Lady Almina of Downton Abbey’. It was that woman who converted the home to a hospital and she became known as a great healer of her time.
Whatever was in fashion in Europe, it was sure to be brought quickly to the U.S. during the last few centuries. The Georgian style of construction can be seen all over the Eastern Seaboard and New England, and it did make its way out west and even to Utah. Frankly, by the time we started building Georgian-style homes, they were passé back in Washington and New York. They aren’t that common here but just about every Utah town has a few examples of Georgian design.
How can you tell if you’re living in or by a Downton Abbey-like Georgian castle? The architectural style is very recognizable: the homes here like that are @100+ years old and have features such as wide fascias, stones over or at the base of the windows or doors, and round columns on the porches. I have heard one history buff say that when these homes are looked at from the side view ‘They resemble small temples’. They are generally one or two story homes and have granite or sandstone foundations. Utah.history.gov says “Although the true Georgian house has a central passage dividing the two rooms on each side, the most common Georgian form in Utah has the passage running only halfway through the house, with two large rooms in the front and three smaller rooms along the rear.” They also tend to have side gables and low pitched roofs.
We’ve all seen pictures of the Frankenstorm, “Sandy” that hit the East coast two weeks ago. Disasters like that prompt a myriad of thoughts and discussions about “What would happen if disaster struck HERE? Am I prepared to be without electricity and water for a week? What if my entire home disappears into a crack in the earth during a tremor?” Homeowners are required to carry insurance on the behalf of lenders, to protect the lenders interest on their loan. When disaster strikes, a property owner will likely call their insurance agent immediately and make a claim. But what if you had let your insurance lapse or can’t get insurance on your property? Look for the folks riding in on proverbial white horses to save the day: FEMA!
The Federal Emergency Management Agency is a government agency paid for by your taxes, under the Department of Homeland Security. It was only created recently-in the 1970’s and is called in when a State declares a disaster area due to a man-made or act of God event that overwhelms the abilities of the citizens of that state or states. Before then the government responded to disasters like the great fires of Portsmouth, New Hampshire and New York City in the 1800’s by waiving taxes to merchants to help them recover from loss of property.
FEMA is not the Red Cross, but people in need often confuse the two and think that FEMA brings the food and blankets right after the storm leaves. FEMA helps individuals after disasters who do not have insurance or who have been hit by flooding. They send out inspectors to the area in question, evaluate your situation and make a decision about your case within 10 days of the visit. They may cut you a check immediately for temporary living expenses not covered by flood insurance, and if you’re just a renter, they may give you living expenses for up to 6 months. Landlords can’t get money for lost rents, though.
The agency can give you money up front for emergency purposes, and offers grants. You must use their grants for specific purposes, as in what repairs to make to your current home and the amount of rent assistance you’ll get while you do those repairs. Anyone affected by a huge disaster (like the storm surge and floods back East) can apply for help from FEMA and the State will encourage you to apply because they will get more money from FEMA for infrastructure repairs. FEMA can offer assistance in negotiations with your insurance company, too.
Basically FEMA is there for folks in extreme circumstances after disaster strikes, and especially for people who don’t have insurance. In reading over threads about how effective the agency is, one person wrote, “I wish I didn’t have my car insured-my neighbor got a huge check for his beater that hadn’t run for years.” What does your insurance cover? It’s good to know, whether you’re a property owner or tenant. You never really know until disaster strikes, but call your agent and ask a few basic questions:
- Am I covered for earthquake? For flood? Fire?
- Will you pay for my lodging until I can move home, and if so, how much and for how long?
- What repairs won’t you pay for?
Your insurance carrier can also advise you on additions to your current policy which might cover you better during a total property disaster.
I hate to keep harping on you all, but it’s school time and you’re desperately still looking for a place to rent, right? Once again the Department of Commerce has sent out a media alert, ‘Consumer Protection warns of fake rental scheme targeting real estate ads’. There are FAKE rental ads on Craigslist, KSL-beware the pirates! Yes indeed, there are scammers out there who go onto the interwebs, clip photos of homes for sale and paste them into phony ads. The Francine Giani, the Executive Director and soon to be Liquor Commissioner said recently, “Young people seeking rental properties need to be especially careful when searching housing ads online. Many have grown up with the internet and feel comfortable doing business without face-to-face interaction which can make them more vulnerable to these types of online scams.” WTF? Because you’re interwebs saavy, you’re an easier target?
Generally you can smell a scam from a mile away because you are younger and you are used to scams: 1) the language in the online ad is poor at best, as if ‘Peggy’ used a Russian to English translation website to help her/him write it; 2) for whatever reason, when you call the landlord he or she says that they are out of the country on a mission in Wadiya, or live in Vegas, baby so they can’t meet you there; 3) the phone number to call for the ad always has an out of state number or worse-is an international number; 4) they want you to WIRE a deposit somewhere to hold or rent the property; 5) the rent price is like wow, HALF the normal rent for a two bedroom flat.
Ding, ding, ding, all your alarms are going off. The proper protocol for leasing an apartment or house generally starts with a readable ad written by a landlord or property manager then published on the internet or in a local paper. Sometimes you get to see the property because the landlord has hidden a key, left the door open, or the property manger gave you a code. You then usually fill out a rental application for the landlord. IF you go through a professional leasing company you will also a) have to submit an application fee along with your application; and b) at least have your criminal back ground checked.
Additionally, you are smart enough to find out who the owner of record is of the property. The county you live in has access for you on-line to the owners of property on the records. If you meet a private individual at an apartment touting themselves as the owner, ask for ID? And take a friend? Not only could “Peggy” be a scammer, but “Peggy” could be there to rob and or rape you. Not kidding.
Words to the wise-put on your super scumbag alert headphones and be cautious, not desperate. If you’ve been looking for weeks and weeks for a landlord who will rent to you with your 225LB dog, and FINALLY “Peggy” shows up at a fantastic penthouse downtown and offers it to you for a $1000 cash depost-RUN! It’s too good to be true. If you call the area code/ number listed for Wadiya and “Peggy” tells you there are 7 people interested in the unit and if you WIRE $1000 tonight you’ll get the place know that he/she is a LIAR ! Don’t send money unless you can verify the source. Do not give the stinkin’ rent pirates ANY of your personal account information, SSN numbers or a rental application UNTIL you know where that pirate does his banking and docks his ship at night! And remember: TALK LIKE A PIRATE DAY IS SEPT. 19TH. Arrrrgh!
Wasatch“The tables have turned-It’s now a seller’s market”! Those were happy words on the front page of the Salt Lake Tribune last week, right? That is not a headline we’ve seen in these parts in FIVE FREAKIN’ YEARS! Let me take the next few paragraphs here and share with you my slant on the statistics that were just released by the Front Multiple Listing Service (WFRMLS). FYI: The WFRMLS is a private company owned by the three largest private real estate associations/Boards of Realtors in the state: The Davis County Board of Realtors, the Utah County Board of Realtors and Salt Lake Board of Realtors.
1) Everyone wants Tooele County. Prices there went up 6.5% in the past year, from $139,900 to $149,000 on average. That is still a screaming deal for folks looking for a more small town living experience and a 30 minute commute to Salt Lake City;
2) Salt Lake County saw a 5.9% increase, with the highest sales prices in the past year jumping up in the Holladay area-with a change from $280,000 a year ago to $370,000 this past quarter. That’s no surprise to me because that’s an area of very high priced homes. Surprisingly, Sandy went down by 1.9% in the past year to an average of sales prices of $180,000, Herriman down 5.4% to $244,000 and the 84106 zip code down 1.9% to $211,900. There were no stats reported for my neighborhood downtown (84101) but that may be related to the fact that the LDS Church hasn’t been reporting most of their sales in the City Creek condo projects or that the Broadway Park auctioned condos by Pioneer Park are only starting to close this month (after a 6+ month wait in escrow).
3) Davis County is up 3.4% in prices to an average of $196,500, with the highest prices now found in Layton and then Woods Cross.
4) Utah County (Provo area) just squeaked by Weber County in popularity: Utah County prices went up from $191,900 to $195,000 where as Weber County went up only 1.3% to an average sales price of $145,000.
There are still grim statistics out there: Eden properties went down -18.7% in the last year, followed by South Odgen at a drop of -16.6%. I generalize, but use the rule of thumb “We dropped on average of 30% since the crash 4 years ago. We’ve adjusted back to prices of 2003 now.”
How can you NOT buy a home when interest rates are at 3.5%? Rent IS HIGHER, period. Sure, you have some credit issues. Fix them! A good lender will hold your hand and HELP you fix your credit-for free. You don’t have money down? There are totally legit zero down loans out there which a good lender can tell you about. The apocalypse is soon and zombies will only destroy your house to get to your yummy brains? Buy a damned high rise condo and pick them off from your balcony!
One other really obvious fact I want to mention in response to the ‘seller’s market’ headlines: If you’re a seller you’re only going to sell IF your property is priced correctly. Otherwise, if you’re priced wrong, you’re going to sit, and sit, and sit on the market and be fodder for the bottom feeders.
My fellow Realtors are going to be a bit peeved at me when they read this article. Why? It’s college graduation time and I’m going to tell you lucky graduates NOT to run out and buy a home for a few years. I know that seems like crazy advice right now especially since mortgage interest rates are incredibly low and mortgage payments are less than rent payments these days. Please consider some of these points when you approach the biggest financial decision of your new life:
1) What did it just cost you to get that diploma in your hands? Just two years ago the Huffington Post reported that the average college student owed @$25,000 in loans once they graduated. President Obama has been lobbying Congress and speaking at universities around the U.S. in the past two weeks explaining that many student loan payments may double starting July 1, 2012 if changes aren’t made immediately to Federal loan programs. If you’re one of those unlucky kids who’s getting the crap scared out of you because you might not be able to pay back your student loans, then it’s not a good time to buy a home. Your debt is too high and may be getting higher!
2) The Associated Press just released a survey this past week that said basically 50% of college graduates this year won’t be able to find jobs or find positions in their field. Generally when you apply for a mortgage loan, you have to be on the job for at least 2 years. If you just got lucky and were offered a guaranteed job in your new field (i.e.- a position with a local law firm for $45,000 a year as starting pay), a lender will have some hoops for you to jump through before you get a home loan. Basically, you have a 50-50 chance you might not have a job waiting for you after your parents go home after the graduation ceremony. Certainly it’s not a good time to buy a home without a job. It’s an even worse time to buy a home if you landed a job you know you’re not going to stick with for long, or if you think you’ll be moving out of state later for better employment.
Congratulations on getting that sheep’s skin. Right about now you’re pretty much done with people telling you what to do, how to do it, and where and when to get it done. I humbly ask that you consider a few last words of wisdom…if you can stand it. Make sure you go over all your options when you decide to buy a home. Giving your landlord the middle finger is a wonderful feeling, and owning a home can be an even better one. Please WAIT until all your financial and career ducks are in a row.
And last but not least, use a professional. These days it’s easy to shop for homes on the web. You can download forms and all the books you can possibly read about real estate onto your IPad. Aligning yourself with a full time negotiator (Realtor) will make the same difference in your financial plan as when you stopped having your roommate take notes in class and actually attended in person.
Utah’s rate of foreclosed homes has dropped 49% in the first three months of 2012. That should be great news for home sellers, right? Maybe property values will stabilize or stop falling? Hold onto your bootstraps-Salt Lake City is still in the top of the pile of mortgage muck for the nation in foreclosures, according to RealtyTrac, Inc (a national data track service). Data released last week by RealtyTrac Inc. shows one in 415 Utah housing units saw a foreclosure filing in March. That's still behind the rates of most of our neighboring states but we’re in the top seven in the U.S. Arizona, Nevada and California are all about tied for bad news, in that-1 in 300 homes in those states are in the foreclosure process. In addition, Utah is 1:415, Colorado 1:591 and Idaho 1:839. And the really creepy part to these statistics is that RealtyTrac reported that more U.S. homes in general are entering the foreclosure process this year and “setting the stage for a surge in properties repossessed by lenders this year.”
Hear that wet sucking sound as you pull your shoe out of the mortgage mud? That’s the unpleasant noise of more foreclosures, which equals lower home prices. As a seller, that stinks. For buyers, this is great because lower prices means better deals. Even if Utah may be experiencing a brief respite from foreclosure filings, the nation is up 7% this year in first time foreclosure notices says RealtyTrac, Inc.
How does a foreclosure work here is Utah? First, we don’t have state laws that usually make your lender take you to court if you’re late on your payments. Most lenders just have to file a notice of default against you after you’ve become late at the County Recorder’s office. The lender can do it in person or on line. They also have to send you a notice of default to the address they have on file on you. Once that notice is filed, you get three months before the property is sold at public auction…supposedly regardless if you claim you never received the notice.
You can make up your payments and any late fees within those three months. Be very careful how you make the payments to the lender to insure you get confirmation they’ve received the monies. If you don’t pay up though, 20 days before the ‘sale date’/ auction date a notice is taped up, stapled or nailed onto your property for you and all your neighbors to see. I saw a notice the other day when I was visiting friends at a townhome. The paper was attached with blue tape onto the middle of the front door of a vacant property next door my friends townhome. We walked over to get a look at what the notice said as we were leaving for dinner. By the time we got back from our meal, the notice had been removed. It’s embarrassing as hell to have a foreclosure notice put on your property! The lender also may run three weeks of ads in the local paper about the sale (per law) to add salt to the wound.
Foreclosure sales are held as public auctions at the county courthouse with the property going to the highest bidder. If the sale price is above and beyond the amount owed to the lender, the extra monies go first to any junior lien holders and then to the borrower.