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Can I sell my house in North Carolina if it is in foreclosure?

Stop Foreclosure in North Carolina: A Comprehensive Guide

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How does Foreclosure work in North Carolina?

Facing foreclosure can be one of the most challenging experiences for any homeowner. Whether due to unexpected financial difficulties or other life events, the threat of losing your home can feel overwhelming. Fortunately, there are numerous strategies and resources available to help homeowners prevent foreclosure in North Carolina. This guide will provide an in-depth look at the North Carolina foreclosure process, prevention options, and how K Real Estate & Investment LLC can assist you.

What is Foreclosure?

Foreclosure is a legal process where a lender attempts to recover the balance of a loan from a borrower who has stopped making payments. The lender typically seizes and sells the property used as collateral for the loan. This process can have severe financial and emotional impacts on homeowners, making it crucial to understand the options available to avoid foreclosure.

Types of Foreclosure in North Carolina

In North Carolina, foreclosures are predominantly “non-judicial,” meaning they are handled outside the court system, specifically by the county clerk rather than a judge. However, judicial foreclosures, which involve the court, can also occur. Here is a detailed explanation of the non-judicial foreclosure process:

If you borrowed money to buy your house, you probably signed a Note and a Deed of Trust. The Note is the contract that states you borrowed a certain amount of money at a specific interest rate, names the lender, and obligates you to repay the loan. The Deed of Trust indicates that if you don’t make your mortgage payments or if you break other terms of the loan, the lender may ask the Trustee to ask the court to foreclose on the house and sell it so that the Lender can recover its money.

The North Carolina foreclosure process starts when the Trustee files a Notice of Foreclosure Hearing, which names the date and time the Clerk will hold a hearing to decide whether to foreclose on the house. To order a foreclosure, the Clerk must find that:

  1. There is a valid debt.
  2. The party seeking the foreclosure has paperwork proving it is either the original lender or legally received the note.
  3. The debtor defaulted on the loan by falling behind on payments or otherwise violating the terms of the loan (e.g., transferring ownership of the property without permission, not paying property taxes, or failing to keep hazard insurance).
  4. The Deed of Trust includes a “right to foreclose” and a “power of sale”.
  5. The Trustee gave proper notice of the hearing to all parties (especially if the borrower is in active military service).

It is important that you attend every hearing and ask the Clerk for a continuance for more time to try to resolve the foreclosure. Otherwise, if the Clerk finds no reason to delay making a decision or to deny the Trustee’s request for a foreclosure, the Clerk will sign an order allowing your house to be sold. If you are working out a modification with the lender, you should still attend the hearing and tell the Clerk what you are doing to save the home. If you are on active military service when foreclosure is filed, have a friend or relative attend the hearing to tell the Clerk and request a continuance.

If the Clerk signs a sale order, you have ten days to file an appeal with Special Proceedings for a hearing before a Superior Court Judge. If you appeal, you may be required to post a bond to stop the sale from being finalized. The Superior Court Judge can only decide whether the lender has proved the five elements of foreclosure.

When the sale is held and a bid is made on the house, other interested buyers have ten days to make higher “upset bids” to try to buy it. Each time a new bid is made, a new ten-day upset bid period starts. During a ten-day upset bid period, you can stop the sale by paying the balance on the home. Filing bankruptcy during this time will also stop the sale, at least temporarily.

If the sale is finalized, the Trustee will prepare a Deed for the new owners, who are then entitled to take possession of the house. You may want to ask the new owners if they are interested in a “cash-for-keys” arrangement in which you would agree to move by a certain date and leave the house in good condition and they would pay some amount towards your moving expenses. If the new owners decide to evict you, they must first serve you with a written notice to vacate the property within ten days. After the tenth day, they can apply to the Clerk of Court for a Writ of Possession to be executed by the Sheriff’s Department. The Sheriff’s Department should post a notice at the house with the date and time the eviction is scheduled for, usually within five days after the owners filed for the Writ. You should remove all your possessions before the Deputy Sheriff arrives to secure the house. If you leave items behind, you must arrange with the owners to recover them within seven days; otherwise, the owners can throw them away.

After the sale is finalized, the Trustee will prepare a Final Report and Account of Foreclosure, which explains how much the house sold for and how the money was applied. You may be entitled to any surplus money after the loan and other expenses are paid. If you find that you are unable to avoid losing your home to a foreclosure sale, you should apply for and try to get rental housing before the sale since your credit will be damaged by the sale, limiting your housing options.

Current Foreclosure Statistics in North Carolina

  • 792 properties are currently in foreclosure.
  • 70 REOs (Real Estate Owned) properties are bank-owned.
  • 1 out of every 1,505 housing units will be foreclosed on.

These statistics highlight the prevalence of foreclosure in North Carolina, emphasizing the need for effective foreclosure prevention strategies.

How to Sell Your House Before Foreclosure

Selling your house before foreclosure, also known as a pre-foreclosure sale, can be beneficial in several ways:

  • Time to Make Repairs and Stage the Home: Allows small repairs and cleaning to get top dollar.
  • Work with K Real Estate & Investment LLC: Helps get the best possible price for your home.
  • Avoid Credit Damage: Prevents foreclosure from hitting your credit report.
  • Flexible Timeline: Move according to your schedule, not the bank’s.

Resources for Foreclosure Prevention

Free Foreclosure Prevention Counseling

Free counseling, regardless of what stage of the North Carolina foreclosure process you find yourself in, is available through the State Home Foreclosure Prevention Project, administered by the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency. Housing counselors can also work with servicers on your behalf and refer you to free legal services if your income is low. Services are provided by participating HUD-approved housing counseling agencies statewide. Reach out to the Agency call center at 1-888-442-8188 to be connected to a housing counselor.

State Home Foreclosure Prevention Project

Homeowners should call 1-888-442-8188 to be connected with a local housing counselor who can review their options, work with their servicer, and refer them to free legal services.

FHA Resource Center

Homeowners with FHA loans who have contacted their services and have not received a response should contact the resource center at 1-800-225-5342 or for assistance.

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Homeowners can find additional resources and recommendations at the CFPB’s Help for Homeowners website. The site provides information on forbearance and how homeowners can locate their servicer.

995 Hope Homeowner Counseling

Offered by the Homeownership Preservation Foundation since 2004, 995 Hope works one-on-one with homeowners, providing free, confidential, and comprehensive financial and foreclosure prevention education through the national Homeowner’s HOPE™ hotline at 1-888-995-HOPE (4673).

NC 211

Provides free and confidential information 24/7 on health and human services and resources within your community, maintained by the United Way of North Carolina. Dial 2-1-1 or 888-892-1162 for assistance and text COVIDNC to 898-211 to sign up for announcements and updates.

HUD Homeowner Assistance

Homeowners can find HUD-approved counseling agencies’ contact information, tips to avoid foreclosure, and helpful videos on HUD’s Homeowner Help webpage.

Legal Aid of North Carolina

Legal Aid of NC provides free legal help to low-income North Carolinians in civil cases involving basic human needs like shelter and can help you retain ownership of your home. Call 866-219-LANC (5262) to apply for help.

Freddie Mac #Help Starts Here

This interactive guide provides resources for struggling homeowners, including guidance on key steps to take, available options and alternatives, information about forbearance and how it and other relief options could impact you, and how to avoid foreclosure.

Here to Help by Fannie Mae

Here to Help provides information on getting help for homeowners that have been financially impacted by the pandemic, including a Mortgage Loan Lookup Tool that lists what free resources are available.

Foreclosure Prevention Tips

  1. Contact Your Lender: Most banks do not want to foreclose. They may offer temporary forbearance or a loan modification.
  2. Respond to Mail: Important notices and options for foreclosure prevention are often communicated through mail.
  3. Know Your Rights: Understanding your loan and state foreclosure laws can help you navigate the North Carolina Foreclousre process better.
  4. Prioritize Spending: Focus on essential expenses and mortgage payments.
  5. Use Your Assets: Selling assets or getting an extra job can provide temporary relief.

Stop Foreclosure in NC: How K Real Estate & Investment LLC Can Assist You

Facing foreclosure can be stressful and overwhelming, but you don’t have to navigate it alone. K Real Estate & Investment LLC provides:

  • Immediate Assistance: We offer quick cash offers that can help you avoid the lengthy North Carolina foreclosure process.
  • No Repairs Needed: Sell your house as-is. We buy properties in their current condition.
  • Expert Guidance: Our experienced team will guide you through every step of the North Carolina Foreclosure process, ensuring that you understand all your options.
  • Tailored Solutions: Whether it’s a cash offer, our “Deed Program,” or other solutions, we work to find the best fit for your situation.


Foreclosure is a challenging situation, but with the right resources and guidance, homeowners can find a way to avoid it. By taking proactive steps and seeking assistance from professionals like K Real Estate & Investment LLC, it’s possible to navigate through financial difficulties and find a path forward. If you’re facing foreclosure in North Carolina, reach out for help today and explore the options available to you. With comprehensive support and strategic actions, you can stop foreclosure in NC and secure your financial future.