The time a foreclosure takes to complete depends greatly on local laws. Every state has different procedures and time periods governing how a foreclosure may proceeds, ranging from a few months up to a year in some cases. A foreclosure can also be delayed by a number of factors, so it's very difficult to give an accurate assessment of how long a foreclosure may take. But a foreclosure does follow a general timeline, where certain events have to occur.
First of all, a mortgage has to have been in default for a certain amount of time (usually 30-90 days) before it is eligible to become a foreclosure mortgage. Once that period expires, the lender will provide the homeowner with a Notice of Default, informing them of their debt. In most cases, the lender has to wait another 30 to 90 days before issuing a Notice of Sale outlining their intent to sell the foreclosure through a short sale and collect the debt owed on the foreclosure loan.
There is another prescribed time period after a Notice of Sale that must pass before a sale can occur, ranging from a few weeks to a few months. Again, it's very important to check up on your local laws regarding foreclosure loans to truly understand the process.
At any point before a sale occurs, the homeowner can get a foreclosure stop by paying off their default debt, selling their home or securing foreclosure refinance for their mortgage. Any of these options can work to pay off the lender and avoid a full foreclosure.
Education is key when it comes to fighting foreclosure, and whether you're facing an FHA foreclosure, bank foreclosure or private lender foreclosure, rules and laws always apply. Consult your local Sheriff's office, or look online to see foreclosure laws for your area.