If you are behind on your payments and no longer occupy the property, eventually the lender will secure the property and you will be locked out. If it is listed for sale and you are pursuing a short sale this can be frustrating. If possible, make sure it is obvious you are still occupying the property.
Property preservation is a hot topic these days. If a servicer determines that a house is no longer occupied, they will enter the property by any means, change the locks, and start performing interior and exterior maintenance.
Property owners (and very often their real estate agents as well) often become incensed at the intrusion. They ask: “What gives them the right to enter MY house without MY permission?”
And while that is a legal question that should always be directed to an attorney in the state where the property is located, it is very likely that buried somewhere in that pile of paperwork that the borrower signed at closing was a provision to allow a servicer to enter an abandoned property for the purpose of preservation.
In any case, legal or not, it happens every day.
It’s just another facet of the new real estate reality.
Note: Laws vary by state. Always consult an attorney in your state with any legal questions.
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