Real Estate Attorney with THE ZARETSKY LAW GROUP - Board Certified Real Estate Atty and AUTOMATED LAND TITLE COMPANY

Recently several borrowers have stated to me that the foreclosure process in Florida is going to take two years.  The long foreclosure process was caused by a combination of overloaded plaintiff attorneys, overloaded lenders, and overwhelmed court system. Although that statement (as unfortunate as it is for the foreclosing banks) was pretty accurate at one time, today is a different story.

Today there is a new dawn in the foreclosure legal system.  Where once there was one judge handling foreclosures, now (in Palm Beach County for example) there are at least six.  Where once the clerk used its own employees for all tasks, now the clerk has rounded up a posse of volunteers to do filing and other tasks.  Where once the public foreclosure sales were backed up for months to get on a sale sheet (which were twice a week) and done by human beings, now it is all done by computer and take place 4 or 5 times a week. I represent borrowers as well as lenders.  This week (representing a lender) I got a foreclsoure sale date for just 5 weeks out.

Technically, using the civil procedure and statutory sale rules and laws and taking all waiting periods into consideration, a Florida foreclosure sale can take place just 100 days from the time the case is filed (and that includes some "fudge time").  That is a far cry from 2 years.  There are still plenty of things that can cause delays, but the only one of those "things" that a borrower can control is being sure they are properly represented by an attorney from the very beginning of the litigation.  A discussion of the foreclosure process is contained in A LAWYER'S EXPLANATION OF THE FORECLOSURE PROCESS.

I have used this analogy before in other context but it works here too - imagine an hour glass with the sand dropping from the top to the bottom of the glass.  Each grain of sand is a solution, or an opportunity, or some planning device, or a defense, or an answer.  The grains of sand (and what they represent) cannot be used once they are in the bottom spent part of the hour glass.

Procrastination is not a plan. 

[I suggest you also read the sister article at ITS NOT THE JUDGE'S JOB TO BE THE DEFENDANT'S ATTORNEY]

Copyright 2010 Richard P. Zaretsky, Esq.


Be sure to contact your own attorney for your state laws, and always consult your own attorney on any legal decision you need to make.  This article is for information purposes and is not specific advice to any one reader.

Richard Zaretsky, Esq., RICHARD P. ZARETSKY P.A. ATTORNEYS AT LAW, 1655 PALM BEACH LAKES BLVD, SUITE 900, WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA 33401, PHONE 561 689 6660   email: - FLORIDA BAR BOARD CERTIFIED IN REAL ESTATE LAW - We assist Brokers and Sellers with Short Sales and Modifications and Consult with Brokers and Sellers Nationwide!  New Website

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Re-Blogged 7 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Michelle Gibson 11/30/2010 01:13 AM
  2. Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers 11/30/2010 01:15 AM
  3. Angelina Clarke 11/30/2010 01:39 AM
  4. Michael Lissack 11/30/2010 03:08 AM
  5. Nick Tukmanian 12/02/2010 12:23 AM
  6. Kelly Willey 01/21/2011 08:24 AM
  7. Kelly Willey 01/21/2011 08:24 AM
  8. Connie Winstead 01/21/2011 08:27 AM
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Jason Rankin
Rankin Real Estate Services - Jefferson City, TN

Wow. 100 days is a far cry from 2 years. The faster these happen, the faster the market (and pricing) will stabilize, in my opinion...

Nov 30, 2010 12:58 AM #2
Michelle Gibson
Hansen Real Estate Group Inc. - Wellington, FL

Richard - I hear "2 years" all the time in Palm Beach County.  Excellent information to share with everyone!

Nov 30, 2010 01:08 AM #3
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
Serving the Greater Phoenix and Scottsdale Metropolitan Area - Scottsdale, AZ
Haven Express @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty

A great post right on point about the need to decided on a course of action now and implement it quickly if you are under water on your home.  Playing "ostrich" is not likely to help you in the long run!

Nov 30, 2010 01:14 AM #4
James McGary
Agents Set Free, Inc - Irvine, CA

Procrastination is not a plan.  That is so incredibly true.

Nov 30, 2010 01:38 AM #5
Angelina Clarke
Builder Services Realty, LLC - Tampa Palms, FL

GREAT POST Richard!!!

I re-blogged :) 

HOPEFULLY, the accellerated process will significantly decrease the SLIMEBALL Landlords pocketing rents for homes they are not paying on.....I cannot even fathom how this is legal....but it is happening...WAY TOO MUCH here in FL

Nov 30, 2010 01:43 AM #6
Jeremy Gryvatz
RealWorks Residential Brokerage - Manalapan, NJ

Sometimes the bank operates in a quick and smart fashion. My experience however has been that selling REO properties can take ages. I have had full price offers take over a year to close.

Nov 30, 2010 01:53 AM #7
Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley,, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

HA!  Sounds like Virginia, the "rocket docket state".


Nov 30, 2010 01:55 AM #8
Richard Weisser
Richard Weisser Realty - Newnan, GA
Richard Weisser Retired Real Estate Professional


There has to be a way to resolve these defaults faster than two years. That just encourages more defaults.

Nov 30, 2010 02:05 AM #9
Heather Littrell
Keller Williams - North Concord, NC
ABR,GRI,SRES Cabarrus County NC

The consumer is becoming more and more aware of this issue and I am hearing it on the streets now.  They feel like they can live without paying their mortgage for at least a year and they are also commonly stating that they think they are going to be more readily forgiven for their credit due to the bad times now.  This just creates more havoc in the marketplace.

Nov 30, 2010 02:22 AM #10
David Cahill
Century 21 Cahill Associates - Boston, MA

If it happens soon, will there be a flooding of the market?  I have heard that banks have YEARS worth of inventory that they are letting out slowly so that they don't take a huge hit in any given year so the stick price remains strong.

David in Boston

Nov 30, 2010 02:36 AM #12
Cory Barbee
San Diego, CA
Broker (760) 563-4022

We've had much better luck here in San Diego. I would say that 98% of all the REO have closed within 45 days or sooner. I'm counting my blessings !

Nov 30, 2010 04:29 AM #14
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

The whole secondary system is a testament to our failures and just ignores the elephant watching TV in the room.......I would love to see more time and energy spent in solving this another way besides foreclosures or default or emotional stress tactics.....

Nov 30, 2010 06:19 AM #15
Melissa Zavala
Broadpoint Properties - Escondido, CA
Broker, Escondido Real Estate, San Diego County

It is so important for those facing foreclosure to get the true grit and not believe everything they are told. 

Nov 30, 2010 06:33 AM #16
Christianne O'Malley
RE/MAX Realty Affiliates - Reno, NV
Exceptional Service - Delivering Results in Reno!

In Nevada, it takes 120 days. We have non-judicial foreclosure and so they occur pretty quickly. The only thing that stalls them is if they are trying to work out a loan modification or a short sale. 

Nov 30, 2010 08:01 AM #17
Sharon Alters
Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty - 904-673-2308 - Fleming Island, FL
Realtor - Homes for Sale Fleming Island FL

Richard, this is very interesting news for Palm Beach County. We will check to see if Clay County has made any changes to their process to speed it up.

Nov 30, 2010 11:33 AM #18
Phil & Celeste Pafford, Corona CA - Corona, CA
Corona Short Sale Broker

100 days... out here in Southern CA, we stil havn't caught up.  Even after they foreclose, it can take a 100 days to get the squater (I mean renter) out!  ;-)

Nov 30, 2010 12:13 PM #19
Broker Nick
South Florida Real Estate & Development, Inc. - Coconut Creek, FL
Broker Nick Relocation Broker Service

Congratulations this post is now featured in the Silent Majority Group of Active Rain.


Nov 30, 2010 01:19 PM #20
Christine Donovan
Donovan Blatt Realty - Costa Mesa, CA
Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M

"Procrastination is not a plan."  I wish more people understood this and faced the problem early on.

Nov 30, 2010 04:03 PM #21
Vanessa Calhoun
PalmerHouse Properties & Associates, LLC - Atlanta, GA
Your Greater Atlanta Marketing Guru!!

Loved the "hour glass" analogy. Unfortunately, people in distressed situations use the sand as a helmet instead!

Dec 01, 2010 02:02 AM #22
Wendy Rulnick
Rulnick Realty, Inc. - Destin, FL
"It's Wendy... It's Sold!"

Richard - My mantra "Get an attorney!"  There are few who listen. 

Dec 02, 2010 10:24 AM #23
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Richard Zaretsky

Florida Real Estate Attorney
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