Cash for Keys and Foreclosure

I do not understand how cash for keys works. Can you explain cash for keys for me?

What is Fannie Mae's "Cash for Keys?" A lady at our church asked me about it and I have NO idea. Can you help me??

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Highlights


  • Learn about cash for keys.
  • Protect yourself and get the most money in a cash for keys negotiation.
  • Know your rights, when a home you own or rent goes through foreclosure

Cash for keys is a concept for homeowners whose home went into foreclosure or for people who are renters in a property that went into foreclosure. Cash for keys is voluntary, and there are no hard-and-fast rules mortgage servicers or land owners must follow. Cash for keys in not a law. Each mortgage servicer is free to offer it (or not) on a state by state basis, and set their own qualification criteria.

What the Bank Gains from Cash For Keys

Cash for keys can also be called relocation assistance. Cash for keys is when a homeowner or tenant is offered money as an inducement to vacate the foreclosed property in a speedy manner and to leave the property broom clean and undamaged. The bank is eager to get the property back on the market as soon as possible. It is likely that there have been had no payments made on it for an extended time, so the bank is willing to pay a fee to expedite the process, to reduce its losses.

Sometimes, in foreclosed homes, the vacating party is so angry that he chooses to strip out appliances and fixtures, to stop maintaining the home, or to even actively trash the home. Cash for keys is designed to avoid this from happening. It involves a written agreement between the bank and the owner/tenant that specifies the amount that will be paid to the vacating party as well as the timeframe for vacating the property and the binding commitment for the vacating party to leave the property in excellent shape.

Usually, the bank hires a third party, such as a real estate agent, to work the cash for keys process. While the final decision of how much to pay the vacating party rests with the bank, the agent will be someone with whom the vacating party can try to negotiate, regarding the size of the cash for keys payment and when the property needs to be vacated. In general, the faster the property is vacated, the higher the cash for keys payment.

The Rights of the Tenant or Homeowner

It is very important for the homeowner/tenant to know his rights. Once a property is foreclosed, it belongs to the bank. A federal law, the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009, requires that the tenant in a foreclosed property be given at least 90 days, before being forced to vacate. Under the new federal law, your lease is good after foreclosure. You are entitled to stay in your apartment for the full term of the lease. The only exception to this rule is if the new owner wants to live in your apartment, in which case you are still entitled to 90 days before you can be forced to move.

ach state legislature created unique foreclosure and anti-deficiency laws. Follow the links just mentioned to learn the foreclosure rules relevant to you.

Eviction

Different states and localities have differing regulations for how long a person can remain in a property and it may require an eviction to force the resident to vacate. Eviction is not an immediate process, taking at least 90 days. Depending on how long a person legally can stay in a home, before being forced to vacate, that person may gain greater benefit by continuing to stay in the property, when compared to accepting a low-dollar cash for keys offer. The longer a person is legally allowed to remain in the property, the stronger his negotiating position and the more money he should be able to get in the cash for keys agreement. It makes good sense for a person in this situation to know how long the he is legally allowed to remain in the home, doing the necessary research with state and local housing rights authorities.

No one is required to accept the cash for keys offer. The homeowner/tenant should be treated respectfully by the bank’s agent. A person does not have to put up with threats or abuse. The nastier the agent becomes, the likelier the agent is trying to bully someone into a less than favorable deal.

It makes sense for the homeowner/tenant to calculate the costs of moving and relocating, with the goal of negotiating the cash for keys agreement that will cover these expenses. For renters, it is important to cover the topic of the security deposit in any negotiation, or the renters can find that no security deposit is received and there is little or no recourse to recover it. Most agreements require the renters to agree that all future claims are dropped, though some states require the new landlord to honor your security deposit.

Debt distressing you? The Bills.com Debt Coach is a no-cost online tool that will analyze your debts and show you the options available to resolve them and the costs and benefits of each.

Broom Clean

Cash for keys offers can range from $500 to $5,000. Before the money is disbursed to the homeowner/tenant, the agent will come to inspect the property, making sure that is thoroughly cleaned and the property is undamaged. The term that is often used is "broom clean." Broom clean means that the property should be emptied of all personal property, the floors have been swept, the appliances have been cleaned, and any changes that have been made, such as nails in the walls or painting a room, have been returned to their previous condition.

If negotiated properly and a person knows his rights, so he can best protect himself, cash for keys can be a win-win situation for both the bank and the resident.

I hope this information helps you Find. Learn & Save.

Best,

Bill

Bills.com

133 Comments

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  • 35x35
    Jan, 2013
    caryn
    Have been offered cash for keys program. Reading here it says appliances must stay. They are mine. When I moved in what was here was not usable. Do I have to leave my appliances?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2013
      Bill
      There are no universal rules for cash for keys. Because cash-for-keys is an idea and not a law or rule, every term and condition in a cash-for-keys deal is subject to negotiation.

      If you bought the appliances because the home's existing appliances were unusable, and you want to keep them, then do so. However, disclose your wishes to the mortgage servicer so it is not surprised if it assumes the appliances were to remain in the property. Who knows, the servicer may want the appliances, and may sweeten the deal to convince you to leave them behind.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2012
    Thomas
    My fiance and I just received a letter from the bank regarding the home we live in. She works as a property manager for her father who owns quite a few other properties including this one. He lets us stay here "rent free" in lieu of her acting as a property manager. The letter stated that he is just under $3k past due on the house payments.
    "And if not paid by 01/21/13 the house may result in acceleration of all sums due under the Security Instrument. This means the entire unpaid balance will become due. Also, your property be sold in accordance with the terms of the security instrument and applicable law."
    Our concern is if this amount is not paid what will happen to us. Also would we qualify for cash for keys? Thanks in advance. If any further information is needed please ask.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2012
      Bill
      State laws allow a lender to foreclose on a secured property when the borrower fails to make the agreed loan payments. Under common law, a foreclosure terminated a lease. However, this rule changed when President Obama signed the "Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009." Before this date, renters lost their leases upon foreclosure.

      If you had a customary relationship with a landlord that involved a written lease spanning a long period of time, the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act would apply to you. Here, however, you and the landlord do not have an arms-length relationship, and may or may not have a long-term lease for the property. It is unclear to me if the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act applies in the circumstances you described.

      Talk to the landowner about his plans for the property. You are at the mercy of his finances and decision to catch up on the delinquent payments, sell the property, or allow a foreclosure. His plans and actions will dictate your next steps.

      Cash for keys is an idea, and is not a government program or law. The lender here may make a cash for keys offer to all its delinquent borrowers, to some under some circumstances, or no one.
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2012
    chad
    The majority of landlords do not report their rental income on their yearly tax returns. This may get a tenant some leverage in negotiations with an unreasonable landlord. That is, if they want to stay out of jail. Threaten a call to the IRS. See if that gains you some leverage.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2012
    Myrna
    The condo I was living in is going into a short sale - I was offered $3,000 to move out within 6-8 weeks which I did and left the apartment as clean as I could - Closing on property will be 10/17 - Title Co. told me that once the Closing occurs, the bank will fund the moving expenses I will get my money. What I want to know is how long does it take for the bank to fund the moving expenses to me after closing. I Thank you. Myrna Stern
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2012
      Bill
      Impossible for us to answer your question because there are no laws or industry rules mortgage servicers must follow for cash for keys. What does the cash for keys or short sale contract your signed contain regarding the terms and conditions for your $3,000 payment?
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2012
    Tory
    My elderly parents were offered cash to clean out a home they owned that someone else had been renting. The house and property are in deplorable almost hazardous conditions. I'm not sure how much clean up they will be able to do to the house and the is 7 acres of overgrown yard as well. They are now being told that they will also have to replace a stove (the one there had been thrown out before the forclosure because it didn't work.) How likely is it they will even receive any cash for their efforts?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2012
      Bill
      Cash for keys is a voluntary agreement between the lien-holder or its representative and the owner or tenant. Generally, to get the cash, a place needs to be presented broom-clean. Given the amount of work that your parents have to do, it does not sound likely any cash will be forthcoming. I suggest you speak to their contact-person, to get further clarification.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2012
    Danielle
    My house is up for auction on July 12, 2012. On the county's Web site it shows the judgment amount is $182,000. However, my house is worth WAAAY less than that. How does the auction work (does it start low and the bank just hopes they get up to $182k or do they try to sell it at $182k right off the bat) also, how would I find out who bought it so I can ask about the cash for keys? I am trying to plan what I am going to do because I have a 14-week baby and NEED a place to live. Thanks.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jul, 2012
      Bill
      Cash For Keys is not a government program or a law. Cash For Keys is an idea some banks put in place to cut their foreclosure costs. As a side-effect, it gives exiting homeowners a small boost to help them find housing elsewhere.

      Because Cash For Keys is not a law or a program, it is impossible to know if the new owner of your property will give you anything more than an eviction notice when he or she closes the purchase of the property. Your best course of action is to plan to exit the property at a moment's notice. Were I in your situation, I would start looking for new housing now, and would not anticipate receiving any Cash For Keys offer. If you get an offer, great, but don't expect one.

      Regarding your auction question, the bidding will start at a very low price. If your property is in good shape in a nice neighborhood, it will fetch a higher price than a fixer-upper in a declining neighborhood.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2012
    Kent
    How much approximatly does the real estate agent representing Fannie Mae make, when they make a K-F-C offer to someone that has forclosed.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2012
      Bill
      Kent, there is no published fee structure for Cash for Keys. It is always a negotiaton. The agent makes whatever it negotiated with the property holder, but makes its money on the commission for selling the property. I don't know whether an agent gets any money at all related to negotiating the CFK. The agent gains by getting the person out of the property and having the property in good condition, so they can make the sale.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2012
    Vondale
    Regarding Cash for Keys; is this debt forgiveness, or will this possibly affect your credit in the same manner that a bankruptcy would? Due to loss of income I have been behind on my mortgage (2 pmts.), my account is now in default. Even though I have made Apr2012, and will make my May 2012 Pmt. I just dont have the extra money to catch up on back payments. Is it better to stay in your home up to 90 days if allowed, once the foreclosure process starts in order to have those funds available to you for relocation expenses? I live in Suffolk, Virginia I will have to find out where the state stands.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2012
      Bill
      Cash for Keys is not an item that affects your credit. It is the missed payments and foreclosure that harm your credit.

      Whether staying in the home for as long as possible is better than Cash for Keys depends on the terms you negotiate.

      Separately, it may be the case that the lender could issue you a 1099 for the CfK money. You may want to clarify whether it will or won't, as part of your negotiation.
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2012
    Aaron
    Cash for keys is nice, but its bittersweet. there going to make you call 10,000 different phone numbers, talk to 20,000 different people, bank, broker, real etstate agent etc....you never now who to contact and when. As a tenant, all i should be able to do it leave when they say leave and recive money. not fax in 10 different papers to 20 different people. they should just show up at my door, inspect the place, and give me my money. they want me out, they should do the paperwork, not the tenant!I have moving, work and school to worry about. not messing around with the banks and real estate and worry about faxing papers, and talking to brokers. Nobody seems to really know what the hell is going on and they expect me to leave as soon as possible without a move out date or anything!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2012
    Carey
    Do you approach the mortgage company BEFORE the sheriff sale about "cash for keys" or wait until after the sheriff sale and approach the new owners, which will probably be the bank?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2012
      Bill
      Cash-for-keys is an idea, and there are no rules or laws everyone follows here. The mortgage company or the new owners may not offer a cash-for-keys program. Therefore, there is no harm in starting to ask the mortgage servicer that is handling the foreclosure now if it offers cash-for-keys.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2012
      D
      I been tracking this Fannie Mae house for over a year. The tenants were given a 12 month lease which ends May 31 2012. When if ever will this house come to market. Or will Fannie Mae let the property agent rent it out indefinately on a month to month.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2012
      Bill
      There is no blanket rule to that applies to the question you ask. The owner, whether it is the bank or someone who buys it at auction, will determine what to do with the property. You could send a letter to the address in question, addressing it to the "Property Owner," expressing your interest in the property.
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2012
    Jody
    My condo was sold at a auction on March 21, 2012 - I was renting it to two college students who are friends of mine at under the market value. I did this as a favor to the kids mom who at the time we were good friends. I just found out they received a letter from the new owner via a agent offering them $2500 to move out by a certain date. The letter was addressed to me and was left on the door of the condo. My question is there anyway I can get that money? Out of the goodness of my heart I rented it at under the market value and did not require a deposit for move in. I was never notified of this letter until the mother told me the kids were moving out. I tired to call the agent, but he is not c alling me back. Do I have any recourse? Thank You.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2012
      Bill
      It is commendable that you were helping your friend's kids. Cash for keys is a voluntary program that is designed to get the tenants (renters or homeowners) out of the home quickly, in the case of a foreclosure and to ensure that the property is delivered in good condition. If you feel that your rights were infringed, then I recommend that you speak with a lawyer.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2012
    K
    My mom signed up for the cash for keys program- $2,000 to be out by 03/28- the home in now owned by Sallie Mae, and the deal was brokered with Century21 in Cameron Park, CA. She has been very ill- she had a stroke, so my fiance and I spent the weekend moving and cleaning the property. The house was broom swept and scrubbed. There were a few paint cans, which we left in the garage (thinking the people who moved in eventually would have the paint colors for the house. Well today, during the exchange the Century 21 rep said they would give my mother NOTHING because there are planters in the yard. Is this legal and okay? They can offer nothing of the $2,000 because of planters etc? The house is emptied and scrubbed clean. Someone please help! PS And oh, just to top it off, I called the rep over the weekend to let them know my mother had had a stroke so they could be aware of the medical condition. When they were dealing with my mom today the rep told her to her face, "Your personal/medical issues aren't my problem. For me this is about money." Lovely people.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2012
      Bill
      If the only excuse the agent can offer for not performing on the promises the agent made in the contract was a couple planters in the yard, then you need to level the playing field. Hire a lawyer to write a letter to the agent explaining you are prepared to litigate the issue. If the agent is only in it for the money, he or she will see that defending a lawsuit will cost a great deal more than $2,000, and will see that fulfilling the promises made in the contract is cheaper than spending time in court.
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2012
    David
    We are in a rental house that has been foreclosed on. We signed and returned a Relocation Assistance Agreement for $$ to be out by April 30th. Today i got a phone call telling me that the house had been sold, and the Relocation Assistance Agreement was void. Reading through our signed agreement, there are no clauses for anything about it being sold, or being voidable by sale. The only things it says about not paying us is if we arent out, or the conditions of moveout are not met. Can they void this agreement? should i seek Legal representation and try to hold them to the original agreement?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2012
      Bill
      The desire for the former owner to void the contract he or she signed with you is wishful thinking, if, as you suggest, there is no escape clause in the contract. Unless, of course, the entire contract is void and you can continue to remain in the property until your lease expires.

      Consult with a lawyer who has contract litigation experience in your state to learn your options if the owner does not fulfill the promises it made in the contract the two of you signed.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2012
    Dave
    I'm renting a room in a house that seemed to be heading to foreclosure. Owner also had a pending lawsuit against him for defaulting on a $150K home equity loan. Although there's no way to get a straight answer from owner, he is emptying house and all renters month-to-month leases were terminated. He's claiming that he is surrendering house to avoid lawsuit. A Realtor friend researched things, and said no foreclosure is in effect, probably 12 months away. A prospective new owner claims he has a closing date of 3/29, so perhaps a short sale has been in the works this whole time. Do I have an option to qualify for cash-for-keys or should I negotiate with new owner if his closing date sticks?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2012
      Bill
      Reread the first paragraph in the original answer above — "Cash For Keys" is an idea and is not a law or program people qualify for. The law tenants need to understand is the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009, which you can use as leverage in your negotiations with the new owner.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2012
    Tra'
    I received a letter from the bank lawyers on 2/21 informing me that the home I am living(renting) in is about to be foreclosed, and the expect ownership will be transferred to the lender w/i the next 60-90 days. Shortly there after it will transfer ownership to HUD, and "require no one living in the properties for which it accepts ownership unless certain conditions are met." I can submit a request to continue to live in this property after HUD b/c owner by submitting a written request w/i 20 days. They have enclosed a "Request for Occupied Conveyance" to give HUD the info needed to make a decision. What does this mean and what if they denied my request? Should I try to contact the bank and see about a cash for keys deal, or do I need a lawyer? FYI: I am renting a house that my landlord has stopped paying on since Feb 2011, around the same time I started renting. I found out that he was claiming a homestead tax and wasn't suppose to be renting the property, and had to wait 7 days to get my lights on. Then after the I got served foreclose papers, and told him he stated that he was catching up the payments...long story short I signed another leased b/c he stated that he was saving his house and that never happen...
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2012
      Bill
      Do you want to remain a tenant in the property? If it is in a great location, well-kept, and a competitive price, then by all means complete the form and return it as request so that you can stay.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2012
      Tra'
      Nope its needs repair bad...the code enforcement came out...they are waiting on the foreclose process to fine the owner. If the banks end up with it then they will have to fix everything before they can sell the property...so do I need to try to negotiate a keys for cash offer from the bank to help me move?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2012
      Bill
      Cash for keys is an idea. It is not a government program, nor a state or federal law. Cash for keys is designed to encourage tenants to exit a property and leave it in "broom clean" condition ready for the next tenant to take possession. No one is entitled to a cash for keys offer.

      If your property is a disaster, then the only way you will see any offer is if you have a long-term lease on the property and the new owner needs you to vacate to begin repairs.
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2012
    Caty
    the bank took possession of the house I'm renting, my current lease is until May 11/2012, but the bank offer us cash for keys and give us 15 days (03/15/12), now the homeowners association sent us an 'order expanding receiver's authority, I explain them that I'm leaving the house on the 15 and they say that I still need pay the rent. Do I have to, just for 10 days?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2012
      Bill
      I do not understand why the home owner's association would want you to, or care, about your paying your rent. Your rent is something you should discuss with the bank that foreclosed on your property's former owner.

      If you really mean your monthly HOA dues, then the HOA has a good argument that you should pay your HOA dues for the time that you reside in the property. Consult with a lawyer in your state if you believe the HOA, or anyone else, is attempting to take advantage of you.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2012
    A
    Hi. Our home was foreclosed on 2/7 in Atlanta, GA. a REO realtor contacted us about cash for keys and offered $2000. He is however, trying to rush us out of the house asap. How much negotiation room do we have for an exit date? it hasn't been 90 days. he said that if we go beyond March 19th, the $2000 will be cut to $1500 dollars.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2012
      Bill
      Cash for keys is a voluntary program. There are no rules governing what kind of offer can be made or revoked. Your exit date will be ruled by the laws of your state regarding eviction after a foreclosure and any agreement you negotiate with the representative for the institution that owns the home now.

      Not that you want to go this route, but filing bankruptcy puts a hold on eviction proceedings for a period of time.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2012
      sam
      Hello, I am in the exact situation as A.J, my home was foreclosed on 2/7 in Hinesville, GA. I also was offered cash for keys with a 2,000 offer as well. The foreclosure specialist told me that I would have to be gone by March 19th as well or he could not guarantee the money after that time. He also told me that the bank is already doing the evictions process now and I spoke with him on yesterday. In Reading your response to A.J I would consider bankruptcy. My Question to you is could I file chapter 7 and put a hold on eviction proceedings for a period of time if so do you know how long?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2012
      Bill
      Filing for bankruptcy places a temporary stay on any creditor legal actions, including foreclosure. How long the stay last depends on the local bankruptcy court's workload, how quickly it processes new cases, and how aggressive the mortgage lender is about asking for a lifting of the temporary stay. With these three variables in play, I cannot give you an accurate prediction of how long a temporary stay will allow you to remain in the property. Consult with a local bankruptcy lawyer for an estimate.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2012
    Syed
    I am tenant of house which get foreclosed and bought back by Bank of America at 01/13/2012 in auction. I am on month to month lease before auction. 2 Week after foreclosed bank assigned property manager contacted with me. We agreed verbally (over the phone) that I will move out at 2/17/2012 with $2000 cash for keys. He emails me (2/09/2012) the relocation assistance agreement and form W-9 to sign it back. In the mean time I find out that the house where I suppose to move will not be ready in time. So I didn't sign back the papers and I call (02/13/2012) the property manager to extend the time for 1-2 weeks. After that he is accusing me changing the words and he threatened me that he will do the eviction process. Now he is not willing to do any negotiation. I have not paid rent to anyone since auction. What I should do now? Will they send me notice to quit before eviction? Will the eviction stay on my credit? Please help ASAP.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2012
      Bill
      If you and the property manager cannot negotiate civilly, perhaps you should consider hiring a lawyer to negotiate on your behalf. Alternatively, ask the property manager if he or she will agree to take your dispute to a mediator.

      The landlord must follow your state's eviction rules, which usually involve a formal notice of eviction. Generally speaking, evictions do not appear in reports from TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax, but do appear on RentBureau, a credit reporting agency for landlords.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2012
      SYED
      Today(02/18) I have received Notice to Vacate from attorney via certified mail which describes as follows: "If you are a tenant of the former owner of the property, and not the child, spouse or parent of the former owner of the property, you may be entitled additional rights as provided in the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009, including the right to remain in the property for 90 days from the date of receipt (02/15) of this notice, before eviction proceedings are initiated against you. In order for us to determine on behalf of Fannie Mae, what rights you may have under the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009, you must immediately forward to us the following: (a) a copy of your written lease (if an oral lease, you must provide us a summary of your oral lease)........... (b) proof of your alleged monthly rental amount(.........) (c)proof that all monthly rental payments due under the lease have been paid to date(...........) (d) the name of all occupants of the property who are over 18 years of age; and (e) an indication of whether of not you are Section 8 tenant." In the above circumstances I have few questions: 1. Do I need to send all the documents which he asked for? If I not send anything can I still live in the property for 60 more days. How I know within how many days I have to vacate before starting eviction process. 2. Do I need to pay rent when I am in "Notice to Vacate". If yes, to whom. 3. Do I still have the options for cash for keys? Thanks
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2012
      Bill
      1) If I understand the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009 correctly, you have 90 days from the notice to evict if you are on a month-to-month contract. Let us say for the sake of argument that you are 6 months into a 2 year lease. Under the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009, you would have the remaining 18 months of the lease to live in the property. The key question you need to answer is, "What are my lease terms? That is the purpose of the lawyer's request for documents.

      2. Your liability for the lease payments does not change. The Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009 does not give tenants the right to live rent-free. I have not heard of any scams based on the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009, but to be certain the lawyer who contacted you is legitimate, send a your "who should I pay?" question to the lawyer with a CC to your old landlord.

      3. Yes, the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009 does not prevent the new landlord and tenants to agree to an eviction date less than 90 days. For example, a new landlord could say, "You have 90 days from this notice to leave, but if you vacate the premises in 60 days we will give you $1,000, and if you vacate in 30 days we will give you $2,000." Obviously, I made up those facts and numbers to illustrate a point.
      2 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2012
    April
    We are month-to-month tenants. I was reading that we are entitled to 90 days notice before having to move. If we accept the cash for keys is it 90 days plus the months that the bank gives us.
    1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2012
      Bill
      In the situation you described, your landlord must give you a 90-day notice before eviction — that is federal law. However, the landlord can offer you a monetary incentive, cash-for-keys, to leave earlier.
      2 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2012
      April
      We are tenants from a property that is now own by Bank of America. We where offer the cash for keys program. We received the agreement papers. We had a date and time schedule for the cash for keys. The problem was that there was trash in the trash bins and the cash for keys representative said that all trash bins had to be cleared of trash. We were never told about this and they never send a letter explaining this information. The date schedule for the cash for keys was on a Friday, the trash does not get picked up until Tuesday. We reschedule for the cash for keys on Tuesday being that, that's the day that the trash gets picked up. I spoke to the cash for keys representative and she said if there is another issue that they would void the agreement and that we wont receive any money for the cash for keys program. The problem that I have is that we won't inform about the trash bins being cleared, we also didn't receive a letter with the agreement explaining this or how they expected the house to be. If we would have know we would have cleared the trash bins, I also read on your sight about a situation with plants being planted on the property. If we are not inform about these situations how is it are faults that they where not removed or thrown away. Can they void the agreement because of this reason and if so why are they not explaining how they want the house to be cleared.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2012
      Bill
      It is understandable that you're frustrated, when you are acting in good faith, but are running into obstacles you did not know existed. I think all that a cash-for-keys recipient can do is to ask for a clear, detailed explanation of what is expected. The usual term that is used is "broom clean," which generally means that everything must be removed from the home (trash included) and that the house has been cleaned.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2012
    Aaron
    if I accept the $ from a bank that bought the property, the agent wants to 1099 me for accepting the payment... can MY bank that I was foreclosed from hold me accountable for accepting $ related to the house? even though I guess technically I don't even own it anymore.... thanks!!!
    1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2012
      Bill
      It is unclear to me that a cash-for-keys payment would be considered income. If it is part of a debt forgiveness, then I can see it would be. If it is considered a payment for cleaning the property before you depart, then again it is income. Readers, please write your arguments below for a cash-for-keys payment not being income.
      2 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2012
    Kaleen
    Although zoning codes say it's illegal to rent our house as two separate living spaces, Los Angeles still considers our house a duplex. Because of that, it looks like we've lost our chance for "cash for keys" along with our $2000 deposit. The bank wants us to sign a new lease. They own the house now, but the old owner is still living in our guesthouse for free while we pay her utilities
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2012
    Kaleen
    Hello, We have been renting a house for almost 2 years and we are now on a month-to-month lease. The house was sold back to the bank on 1/17/12 and a bank representative came by to offer us cash for keys. We were happy to hear this offer because the owner won't return our security deposit. The problem is, the property we are renting has an attached guesthouse that the old owner still lives in! The bank is now saying that it's a duplex so we can no longer receive cash for keys. I highly doubt the guesthouse is even legal due to zoning and the fact that we pay the guesthouse's utilities (there aren't separate water meters) The owner is saying that she still owns the house. I have a feeling she has a lawyer involved about the foreclosure. I'm just wondering if there is any way we can still get the cash for keys? We don't think it's fair to be paying the guesthouse's (old owner) utilities and be forced to sign a new lease with the bank. It's as if the old owner will be living rent free (and utility free) in the guesthouse while she is "fighting" the foreclosure that already occurred, while we are forced to enter a new lease agreement with the bank. We were hoping to have a month of free rent and cash for keys to help us with finding a new home and our loss of security deposit. Any information helps!
    1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2012
      Bill
      Cash for keys is a voluntary program, so the lender can decide that you do not meet its test to receive the money.

      You should speak to a lawyer or take the landlord to small claims court regarding the security deposit.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2012
    Jen
    My fiancé and I are currently renting a basement apartment in a house that has just recently been foreclosed on. The house is zoned as a duplex. We have a 2 year lease with a monthly rent payment including all utilities. The Realtor contacted us and told us he has turned our lease over to the bank and they will then proceed and offer us the "cash for keys" program. He said, if we don't accept this offer then they will start the eviction process. We have reviewed the law and it appears that we legally don't have to leave our apartment until our lease is up. My question is, utilities will the bank pay them and do we send our rent payments each month to the bank? Any other tips you can give us would be great. We also have 2 young children and a dog who reside with us.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2012
      Bill
      I am surprised the Realtor is unaware he or she is making incorrect statements regarding the law. First, read the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009 law, so that you understand your rights. It is a short law, and written clearly. Second, get to know your local tenants' rights organization to further arm yourself with local laws that may protect consumers in your situation. Third, if the Realtor or the landlord's representative persist in making incorrect claims about your legal rights, then consult with a lawyer who has consumer law experience.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2012
    Glenda
    My home went to auction 1-10-2012. No buyer so that house automatically reverts back to HSBC. I filed bankruptcy Chapter 7 so I'm not liable for the mortgages. I am still residing at the home and have put just about everything in storage while I find a place. I'm on Social Security Disability hence why I had to file bankruptcy I could not get the Mortgage company to work with me. A real estate broker came by the house and left a note for me to contact him about Cash for Key. I understand that there is a Federal law that allows 90 days to vacate unless something differs from the state that I reside. I cannot find anything regarding this information on Indiana.gov. Can you assist me with question. What is Indiana's stand in Clark County. Thank You
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2012
      Bill
      I did some quick research and could not find a primary source that answers your question. I did locate secondary sources that stated that the foreclosure order includes an eviction order in Indiana. Perhaps a free legal aid organization in Indiana could answer your question.

      I believe the federal law you referenced protects tenants who reside in a home that is foreclosed upon. I don't believe that the 90 day protection applies in your case.

      I think that you should follow up on the cash for keys offer.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2012
    Noah
    The house I rent from a property manager has been foreclosed, and was told this happened a couple days ago. We paid January's rent before we were told it was foreclosed, the property manager said we would only be charged for a few days and receive the rest of the month's rent and our deposit back. I was told that an agent will come to our house and ask us to leave and pay us a certain amount, "cash for keys" I'm assuming. My questions are: The property manager is obligated to give us our deposit and rent money back, correct? What goes in to determining the payout? - I still have 5 months at a relatively high rent remaining on my lease. If, for some reason, my next rent payment date comes and I haven't been contacted by any agent, what happens? I'm sure it won't happen.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2012
      Bill
      Acquaint yourself with the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009, under which a tenant must be give a minimum of 90 days notice before having to move out when the property is foreclosed upon. If the new landowner wants you out of the property earlier than 90 days, then be sure the new landowner makes it worth your while. In other words, you should be offered more than just your security deposit to quit the property earlier than 90 days.

      You mentioned you have five months remaining on your lease. In that case, under the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009, the new landowner must honor the remainder of the lease.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2011
    Kenneth
    Our last mortgage payment was in Jan. 2010 followed by Bankruptcy and foreclosure. Bankruptcy was discharged in Nov. 2010. We receive a statement from BofA every month showing the current status of our loan and an "impact of the Bankruptcy" clause. No "official" notification of foreclosure as yet however BofA did send someone (quite cordial) out to take pictures of the property a couple months back. "Cash for keys" is a great help if we have to move, but have you heard of banks using the money to allow the homeowner to stay with the property at a reduced FMV and current market interest, with the "cash for keys" going towards minor repairs to fix the property up, or just for negotiating a better mortgage?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2011
      Bill
      Cash for keys is not a coordinated government program or law. Mortgage servicers looked at foreclosures and tallied the per-house cost of readying a home for sale. They discovered it is cheaper to pay the homeowner a couple thousand dollars to clean the property and leave it in move-in condition than pay a crew to clean the property, repair holes punched in walls, and so on. Cash for keys is not free money — someone has to make a foreclosed home habitable, and it may as well be the exiting homeowner.

      Assuming the bankruptcy was a chapter 7, you have no personal liability for the home loans. Ask your bankruptcy lawyer to discuss this with you if he or she has not already.

      Contact your mortgage servicer and apply for a mortgage modification. Complete the application fully and completely, and make copies of your application because you may need to submit it several times.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2011
    KEISHA
    My landlord sold or lost his property. A rental company bought it. When they got the property, in the first week of October, they said that the tenants could stay. Now, they claim that the city has condemned the building and they have offered us $500 to move out by November 30th. I have small children and can't move with only $500. What can I do?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Nov, 2011
      Bill
      I am skeptical that you can be forced to move on such short notice. You need to contact a local tenant's rights organization. They can tell you what rights you have in your state.

      If your landlord lost the building to a foreclosure, then you also have federal protections under the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009. Month-to-month tenants are entitled to 90 days' notice before having to move out.

      You can also contact your elected city and state representatives' offices for assistance.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2011
    Kathy
    My house just went to auction. I am no longer living full time in the house but I want to negotiate a cash for keys to finish vacating the house. How do I contact Bank of America - is there an office that deals particularly with this? Should I call them or wait for them to call me?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Nov, 2011
      Bill
      Someone should contact you, by mail, in person or with a note on your door. Still, it can't hurt for you to reach out and try to get information right now. Call your lender and see if you can find the right department to discuss a cash for keys offer. If you get nowhere, you can wait for someone to contact you, but also find out your state's laws regarding how long you legally have to remain in the property before you can be evicted.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2011
    Judy
    My loan is through a credit union, do you know if they participate in the cash for keys program?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Nov, 2011
      Bill
      Cash for keys is not a formal program, plan, or law. Cash for keys is an idea, and each mortgage servicer may offer its own version to homeowners as it sees fit. Your only option is to contact your mortgage servicer, whether it be a commercial bank or credit union, and ask.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2011
    Geneva
    Jay R. in Tallahassee: Go to realtytrac and input the address. Simultaneously, track it on Bank America's REO page. This, though, is what can happen: Bank of American might foreclose and decide to hold it for investment. Or if it was a GSE-guaranteed note, then the property will be quit-claimed by Bank American over to, say, Fannie or Freddie, for example. The current owner of the property can also tell you if he had a Fannie or Freddie or VA or other GSE mortgage. That's where to look, too. As a last resort, run that address twice a week on Google. You will be shocked what you will find. Good luck.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    Jay
    Hi. I have been tracking a property for my daughter in Florida. Owner has been gone at least a year and will not talk about short sale. It appeared that he did not qualify for HAFA. He has indicated he is just going to walk away. He did say that my daughter could move in and turn on utilities but will not put that in writing. Bank of America REO still doesn't have it yet so it is somewhere in the ozone. My daughter is disabled and the property is located in neighborhood that we both grew up in. It is perfect for her. Is there anyway to find out where the home is in the foreclosure process? I constantly check for lis pendens in public records. BOA is the lender and the cash for keys program looks good. I am also a realtor in Florida, but I assume there would have to be a different realtor handling it due to conflict of interest? Thank you.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Bill
      I do not have a good answer for you because, as you mentioned, this property is caught up in Bank of America's foreclosure machinery. In my neighborhood, I have seen Bank of America property sit vacant for more than two years before the bank bothers putting them on the market or foreclosing on the owners. The inefficient and uneconomic behavior boggles the mind.

      Neither you nor your daughter have standing, and it goes without saying that your daughter has no right to occupy the premises. One thought: you are in contact with the owner. Ask him or her to consult with a lawyer who has experience litigating quiet title actions. If Bank of America cannot locate the documents to show it has the right to foreclose, which may explain the delay, the owner may have won the mortgage lottery.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    Terri
    Hi all, my home loan is 3 mo. behind and the bank is going to start foreclosure proceedings if I don't pay by OCT. 25th, they have offered my the cash for keys deal. My question is will the foreclosure proceedings happen before the cash for keys offer goes through, not sure if I should try to make a payment on the house. Also will this affect my credit as bad as a bankruptcy or foreclosure would?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Bill
      There is no set way that cash for keys works, but it usually takes place after foreclosure. You need to speak with the bank. It may make sense to make a payment on the house and it may not. Once you are as far behind as you are now, the bank may be able to refuse your payment, if you can't completely catch up on the arrears.

      Cash for keys is offered for two main reasons:
      • To speed up your vacating the property.
      • To have you vacate the property without damaging it.

      If you are willing to vacate the property quickly, maybe the bank will be willing to forgo the foreclosure.

      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Nov, 2011
      Steph
      I'm in a similar situation as Terri. My bank stated if I do not pay my past due mortgage, they would foreclose my house on November 2nd. It is now November 1st and I am still owe my October payment. Do banks sometimes "delay" the foreclosure process if they see you are trying to catch up?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Nov, 2011
      Bill
      Yes, banks may choose to work with a borrower who is trying to and can demonstrate an ability to catch up on her arrears. Unfortunately, banks can also choose to move full-speed ahead on a foreclosure. The only way for you to find out how your bank will deal with you is to keep the lines of communication open.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    Paula
    I was wondering how you know this "cash for keys" is legit. I was approached at my home by a Relator, who gave me information, on paper, who was going to contact me. After 30 days I contacted them. I have since received an offer, and I am in the process of trying to get everything out of my home...A friend that I know went through this last year, cleaned her house spotless, and never received a check, from her bank..So she is telling me this is a scam...Is there a way to find out this is legit, before I spend the time and the money, to vacate the premisies?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Bill
      In general, cash for keys is a great deal for everyone involved. The fact that one bank either screwed up and did not send the cash for keys payment, or broke its promise to pay a consumer to vacate the premises, is not evidence that cash for keys is a scam for everyone.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    Deanna
    My son moved into a house two months ago and after a month received a notice saying the home was now owned by Fannie Mae the realtor said they could get cash for keys my son inquired about staying so it was switched to a different realtor about 60 miles away she came out and told him the rent would be 1200.00 per month 400.00 more than he was paying which he cannot afford so he told them he would do the cash for keys the second realtor now says he doesn't qualify because he inquired about renting it and also told him he needed to move immediately something just doesn't seem right here do you know if this is legit
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Bill
      Cash for keys is not a law nor is it a government program. It defies logic that Fannie Mae would offer a cash for keys program on the property in question if the tenant meekly acquiesced, but withdrew the offer if the tenant said, "OK, but what if I want to continue to rent the property?" I agree, there is something amiss here, and I think it is a lack of communications.

      Tenants evicted from a foreclosed property are protect by the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009. See the link I mentioned to learn more.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Deanna
      He did only inquire about renting he was trying to find out what they wanted for rent and or what they would be asking for the property He tried telling her that he had just inquired about it but she just kept on saying he needed to vacate the property or he would owe them rent and he no longer qualified for the cash for keys I just am wondering if the second realtor is taking the money that he would get for the cash for keys unfortunately there are a lot of scams out there and he is left out in the cold thanks for your response
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Bill
      I think that your son should check with a local tenant's rights organization, to see if he is being treated properly. I agree with you that something does not sound right about what he is being told, especially the part that he is ineligible for a cash for keys payment because he asked about renting out the home.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    Mike
    Hi. I live in Illinois (Cook County). My condo was auctioned in July and I received a Confirmation of Sale and an Order of Possession dated Aug 31st that I had 30 days from the date. It is now mid-October and I still have not been contacted by a bank representative/realtor about Cash for Keys (or for anything for that matter). I understand C4Ks is a voluntary program offered by some banks, but will I hear something or receive any kind of notice before I am evicted? Thanks! By the way, my mortgage was through Citimortgage
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Bill
      Your message indicates that mortgage servicers continue to be in disarray regarding foreclosures. Please do not be offended by what I write, because I mean no offense to you, but you should have been evicted at the end of September. You should receive an eviction notice from the sheriff. Given that your servicer is disorganized, anything is possible, including a generous cash-for-keys offer, a terrible offer, or no notice from the servicer at all.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    evelyn
    My understanding is that banks offer owners money to vacate when they do not have the proper documentation to foreclosure, i.e. the original note.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    Kim
    CA- Renter with lease ending 12/31/2011, utilities included. Foreclosed mid April 2011, Saxon, reo to Deutsche Bank. Local realtor contacts tenants, leases are provided, and no response to calls or emails. Letter notifying Deutsche of tenants existing with lease, asking how to proceed, no response. July 2011 occupancy check/threat of lock out from Southern Cal Property Mngt Co on behalf of Ocwen Bank. Checked with assessor office, Ocwen had just recorded the transfer. Leases are then provided to legal rep of Ocwen. Prop Mngt proceeds to give a cash for keys to one tenant who had already moved, leaving 2 units with tenants. Legal dept asks again for leases, when asked, they did not know of the cash for keys and said the file had not been worked on. We wait to be advised on how to proceed. No call, email, mail until late Sept a 3 days notice to pay or quit with a total of 3 months rent. Note, we had been paying utilities directly for months now, one is still under Deutsche name. When we contacted legal department to inquire, and reported that we had been in contact, but no one informed us of where to pay and how much since we had paid the utilities. Someone fell asleep at the wheel! Legal dept asked how much would it take for us to move. Researched the DRE website and responded with buy out lease till Dec 2011 (3 months), return of the proven deposits, and 750 for moving truck and misc expenses. We have maintained the property, the units are 4 years old with original tenants. Now we have this prty mngt co falsely threatening with the a sheriff lock out, and how he has saved the day by having the eviction held back, and has negotiated a whopping 2,000 cash for keys. My question- was the bank supposed to issue another agreement between remaining tenants and the bank to collect the rent for the remainder of the lease? Are they supposed to notify tenants at 90 days before the end of the lease? Or does that even exist? I don't think they have grounds for an eviction at this point, because they haven't notified tenants after leases were provided, of where, who and amount of rent - they have not complied with the lease by paying for utilities, yard maintainence, and pest control if they want to use that lease on the basis of a non-payment eviction.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Bill
      Generally speaking, some landlords will get away with what they can and not follow state statutes or contract law because of malevolence or ignorance of the law. Consult with a lawyer in your state who has consumer law or contract law litigation experience to learn if you and other tenants have a cause of action against the building owner or management company.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Kim
      It's bank owned, property manager/realtor is unknown, just a construction & mngt person with a general contractors license who states he is negotiating with the bank for c4k.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    John
    I am not currently late/delinquent on my loan, however, I was recently transferred with my job and obviously it will be next to impossible to afford a mortgage and rent payment in two different cities. Do I have to be past due on my mortgage to do a cash for keys program?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Bill
      Cash for keys is not a law. One mortgage servicer's program may be significantly different from another's. The servicer's are free to change their programs over time, or offer different programs to people in different circumstances. Your only course of action is to contact your servicer to discuss your options.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    Myrtha
    My house goes up for auction tomorrow 10/4/11 I would like the cash for keys but I am not sure how to go about it and how long I have to stay on the property. I live in Georgia
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Bill
      Call your mortgage servicer, or the law firm that the mortgage servicer hired to handle the foreclosure. Ask if the servicer offers a cash for keys program. Not all do. There are no standards for cash for keys. Each mortgage servicer has their own requirements and qualifications, which change over time.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2011
    Tee
    My sale date was 9/6/11. I received a letter from a realty company with a CFK offer. My loan was with BofA, but then sold to Greetree Servicing. Greentree never offered a deed in lieu and said I didn't qualify for a short sale, as the forclosure process was too far in. question is, with the CFK (cash for keys)and the new realtor, do I have the option to lease from them?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Sep, 2011
      Bill
      Negotiate with your mortgage servicer to learn if cash for keys or a lease is a possibility.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2011
    Me
    We have accepted a cash for keys offer with Bank of America and have to be out by the end of this month. Nowhere in the cash for keys contract it says anything about appliances. Does this mean that we can take the fridge and washer and dryer? We will leave everything else. But we bought the fridge and we will desperately need the washer and dryer. Can they ask us to leave all that if it doesn't say it in the contract?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Sep, 2011
      Bill
      From a lender's perspective, the purpose of cash for keys is to discourage a disgruntled homeowner from inflicting damage to a property they are quitting. Usually, the contract specifies that appliances and fixtures are left in the home.

      I can't give you legal advice. You can consult with a lawyer or try to negotiate with the lender directly. It seems that on an equity/fairness basis, you have a good claim to the refrigerator that you paid for. Your need alone for the washer and dryer do not give you, in my view, a strong claim for them.

      You can choose to take everything not specified, but that could result in no cash for you, as I would be surprised if a final inspection is not a term of your contract.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Sep, 2011
      Kristal
      You need to leave any built-in appliances such as a stove-top or double ovens (for example). For a new loan on the property though, lenders require a stove so plan on leaving any traditional "push-in" style. Refrigerators are considered personal property so you can definitely take that. Dishwashers tend to be on a case-by-case basis. Best to check with the contact in the negotiations and have them check with the particular bank. This is from personal experience and as a mortgage loan officer in Las Vegas, NV.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Sep, 2011
      Elizabeth
      We have recently been served (kind of, with a letter posted on our door) that the house we JUST rented two months ago is going to auction on Oct. 13, 2011. We were NOT informed that the house was in foreclosure. We did ask our landlady if it was in foreclosure BEFORE we rented and again just a month ago when papers came to our door from B of O about the house (we did not open these, but it was obvious it was paperwork on the mortgage), and she insisted that she was in good standing with the bank. Once the papers were posted on the door (directed to the RENTER), we again asked and she "called the bank and they told me that this was JUST a formality and that it was a law that those papers are sent out". We have not been offered anything as of yet, but we have been told of our rights as renters in a house that is in foreclosure. I am wondering, since the house had damage BEFORE we moved in and we have pictures of holes in the walls and other damage, do we have to spend OUR money to fix this if offered a Cash for Keys? We moved from AZ in July to Las Vegas in hopes that we would not be moving again for at least another year. (Also, this has happened to us before, in AZ, just two and a half years ago and we were NOT informed of our rights there). Any advice?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Sep, 2011
      Bill
      Federal law, the "Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009" protects you, somewhat. As a month-to-month renter, you have to receive 90 days notice from the lender before you can be evicted.

      You certainly have the right to negotiate with the lender for some financial compensation in exchange for early vacancy of the property or leaving it in good condition.

      I will share my opinion, which is not legal advice: You need not fix the damage if you have proof the damage existed before you took occupancy. However, the state of the property may affect how much the lender is willing to give you.

      You may want to consider a lease for the next home, as leases have to be honored, even after foreclosure, although the provisions of the "Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009" expire at 2012, as the law now stands. Also, I believe that Nevada law allows a lease-tenant to record the lease on the property title, making it necessary for a lender to notify the lease-holder of an impending foreclosure.

      Consult with either an attorney or with a legal services organization that can discuss tenants' rights with you, such as Nevada Legal Services. That way you can find out more about the protections available to you by federal and Nevada State Law.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2011
    Manuela
    I live in Virginia and our house has been foreclosed at the end of June this year. A realtor, who represents the bank contacted us in regards to a cash for keys option and we responded that we might be interested, but would like to hear what the offer is. I haven't heard back for over a month and today she called and told me that the bank is offering $2000 if we are out by Sep 30. Doesn't sound bad, but we are wondering if it works out better for us to reject the offer and stay in the house until eviction. If it takes longer than 2 months for the eviction to take place, then this is worth more than their $2000 offer. Does anybody have any experience with a situation like this in Virginia? What are the laws on eviction? How long are we legally allowed to stay? Thanks
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Sep, 2011
      Bill
      My cursory research shows it would take about one and a half to two months to get you out of the house, though I can't assure you that it won't happen a bit faster. I can't tell if you would incur any costs for legal procedures. Maybe it is better to try to negotiate for a bit more money than to try to stay and drag things out?
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2011
    Tammie
    My home should be foreclosed on in October. Can I approach the bank and ask them about Cash for Keys? Should I wait until after it has been foreclosed?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Aug, 2011
      Bill
      The general rules for dealing with mortgage servicers are these:
      1. Sooner is better than later
      2. Take notes on every telephone conversation you have with a mortgage servicer.
      3. Ask for documentation on every key point.
      4. Know your state's foreclosure laws.
      5. Prepare to hire a lawyer.
      Mortgage servicers are overwhelmed with foreclosures and short sales, and the shortcuts servicers take are well documented by the press. Call your servicer now to learn if it offers a cash for keys program, and what its current terms are.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2011
    Nelda
    About a year ago I received document from my bank stating something about deed of lieu and $3000 relocation assistance. My house foreclosed July 2011 and they only sent me information with websites of organizations that will assist with housing and whatnot. I cannot locate the document I received a year ago about the $3000 so, should I just call the bank and inquire?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Aug, 2011
      Bill
      Cash for keys is offered as an incentive for you to leave the property in good condition when you vacate it. I am not confident that a year down the road that you will have much luck getting money from the bank, but I suppose it can't harm you to call them.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2011
    Chrissb
    I am a renter in minnesota on a property that will not be redeemed by the end of the redemption period. (aug 8th), Thus the bank will own the property. I have been in contact of a real estate agent that explained the cash for keys program to me. Even though he said he would be the agent assigned to this property, I am leary of sending him a copy of the lease before any notice from the bank.(Chase) Should i trust a third party or should i continue trying to contact the bank directly? Is it more common for the bank to contact the renters after they legally own the property? I guess to sum this up, should we sit and wait the hear anything, or should we be proactive by searching for a new place to live?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jul, 2011
      Bill
      Though I doubt that the real estate agent is trying to scam you, you can ask him or her for some kind of proof that he or she is working on Chase's behalf. Explain that you are concerned about sharing private information without knowing it is being shared with the right party.

      Make sure you fully understand your rights to remain in the property, before you agree to anything. Tenant rights in a forelcosed property vary from state to state, although a federal law, "Protecting Tenants aat Foreclosure Act of 2009," makes it so that your lease stays in force even after the foreclosure. Knowing the rights will increase your negotiating leverage and give you a better idea of when it is necessary to start looking for another place to live.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2011
    Paula
    Our house in Missouri was foreclosed on on July 15th, 2011 by Fannie Mae, even though we had a short sale offer. As far as we know, we have a 90 day right to stay to get our things together and vacate premises. The negotiator for Fannie Mae is only giving us 2-4 weeks. My husband has Lou Gehrig's, a terminal disease. He is disabled due to this horrible disease. All we are asking for is enough time to relocate. Missouri has to abide by the federal law Protecting Tenants At Foreclosure Act that I see you mentioned here too, right? It is a federal law, after all, right?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jul, 2011
      Bill
      Yes, the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act is a federal law. Here are a few suggestions:
      1. Consult with an attorney. If you can't afford one, contact a free legal aid service. In Missouri, you can find the right one for your area of the state at Legal Services of Missouri.
      2. Contact your elected state and federal representatives.
      3. Contact the local and national press. Kicking out a person with a terminal disease is a story that I think will interest the press and maybe bring about the pressure needed to solve the problem.
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2011
    Marla
    What about major repairs that a foreclosed homeowner can't afford to make? Our water well pump stopped working during this last winter's hard freeze. I've used rainwater barrels and fresh water from a friend's well since then. Will that disallow me from cash for keys?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jul, 2011
      Bill
      There are no set rules for cash for keys, so you have to speak to your lender directly to hear what it says. The goal of cash for keys is to give the person losing his or her home an incentive to keep the home in good order. I don't think a damaged water pump will exclude you, but only speaking with your lender will get you a proper answer.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2011
    Z.
    How do you reach the person that is a "decision maker" at BofA? I've been begging them to begin the DIL process and all they've told me is I have to list the property for 90 days first. I've stopped paying (June will be the third month) and had to relocate out of state last week to keep my job. Everyone I reach on the phone sounds like they're reading off a script.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2011
    Jennifer
    Anywhere does it state when the cash for keys time starts. Our realtor is telling us that 48 hours after he comes to see if anyone is living the foreclosed property is when the time starts. So, we have to make a decision and find a place all in 48 hours or the forfeit 70 or so dollars per day until we find a place. Do you have a statute or something saying that we at least get 30 days?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      Cash for keys is not a law. Cash for keys is an idea and strategy that some mortgage servicers have adopted as a means to encourage delinquent homeowners to vacate their homes and leave them in move-in condition for the next owners. Cash for keys is not a right.

      Because cash for keys is voluntary, each mortgage servicer creates their own rules. The disadvantages are lack of transparency and consistency. The advantages of a voluntary approach is that each homeowner can negotiate their own deal with the mortgage servicer.

      Call your mortgage servicer directly and discuss what, if any, cash for keys plan they offer. If you do not like the terms, then negotiate to change them. Your real estate agent is not necessarily an authority on every mortgage servicer's cash for keys program.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2011
    AnnLoiuse
    Recently a notice was taped to the door of the townhouse my sister is renting. The letter stated the property would be sold at a tax auction. The auction was today and the new owner states he intends to sell the property. My sister will need to move (timing undetermined) but does not have the money to do so. Since this action was related to a tax liability not a mortgage obligation(to our knowledge), is she eligible for Cash for Keys assistance or do only banks offer this potential option? If Cash for Keys is not an option, do you have any suggestions please? Thank you in advance.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      First, study the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009, which is discussed briefly at the hyperlink I just mentioned. Second, "Cash For Keys" is not a law or a formal program — it is a collection of ideas that some mortgage servicers and landlords create on their own volition. Third, the tenant should sit tight. Rental properties with in-place tenants who pay their rent on time are more valuable than vacant rental units. Just because the property is changing hands is not necessarily an indication of imminent eviction.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2011
    Angie
    My parents' home is in foreclosure through BofA and their second mortgage through GMAC is in default. both lost their jobs. They want to do the Cash for Keys option. The home is worth 280K and they owe 230K total. What happens to the second mortgage if they go for Cash for keys Option with BofA?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      If the total balance of the loans is $230,000, and the fair market value of the property is $280,000, then I fail to understand why they do not list the property for, say, $260,000, make a quick sale and pocket the profit.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Angie
      Thank you. I was not sure if they can do that because of the home being in foreclosure.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      Foreclosure is a process. If the home is early in the process, then it may be possible to sell the home. Consult with a lawyer in your state who has real estate experience to learn if a sale is possible.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2011
    Jennifer
    We are in foreclosure at this point. We have moved everything in storage and staying with family. Ugh! We have sold our Oven and fridge. We have inquired a cash for keys option though the reality company. If we are not occupying the home at this time, would we still qualify for cash for keys?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Bill
      There are no universal rules for cash for keys. Each mortgage servicer has their own rules, which vary from time to time. Contact your mortgage servicer to learn if you qualify for its cash for keys program.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2011
    Jaime
    Our loan is through Chase. We have planned to foreclose due to hardships and have already pretty much moved out but haven't called the bank yet to let them know. When we call them to let them know we want to give the house back, what should we say to inquire about the Cash For Keys program? Our house is in better shape than when we purchased it so I'm pretty sure we have a good chance of qualifying, just not sure how to go about it.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Bill
      Consider a short sale or deed in lieu of foreclosure before rushing into a foreclosure.

      Cash for Keys is a voluntary concept (it is not totally fair to call it a program) that each mortgage servicer may or may not apply in your state, or if it does, it may not apply to your circumstances. Accordingly, call your mortgage servicer and ask how to qualify for a short sale. Then ask about Cash for Keys. Compare the two and pick the one that meets your needs best.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2011
    Susan
    Do you know if Bank of America is still offering the "Cash for Keys" program in Oregon. I heard that they were thinking about stopping that one and offering another program that sounded like it was really close to the same thing.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Bill
      Call Bank of America to learn if the mortgage servicer will offer you the cash for keys agreement. I realize my answer is non-specific, but the programs the mortgage servicers offer change frequently and without notice, and what is offered today may not be tomorrow. Or, it may not be offered to me and people with circumstances like mine, but available for someone in your circumstances.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2011
    Ellie
    We live in North Idaho. Our house was just foreclosed on 4 days ago and a Realtor came to the house today to discuss options. He mentioned the cash for keys program, and that might be a possibility, but I was wondering if we have a 90 day right to stay to get our things together. I would like to enable my daughter to finish out the school year in our home. Does anyone know what our legal rights are- how long we can stay before being evicted? or what the average cash for keys range is for this area? We live downtown Coeur d'Alene.
    1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Bill
      Cash for keys is not codified in federal or state law, as far as I can tell. Regarding Idaho, I can find no mention of it in Idaho laws. (Readers, I welcome your corrections, as always.) Your cash for keys proposal is a private program offered by your mortgage servicer. Take the proposed contract to a lawyer in your state to understand your rights and liabilities. Negotiate the 90-day foreclosure date with the mortgage servicer.

      See Idaho Section 45-1503 et. seq. and Section 45-1506B to learn more about Idaho's foreclosure law and laws related to the postponement of foreclosure sales.

      See the Protecting Tenants At Foreclosure Act found at Title 7 US Code section 701 to learn the federal rules that mention the 90-day notice for tenants.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Renee
      Last Saturday March 12th our property manager came to our duplex and explained that the bank foreclosed on the duplex that our landlord owned. He said that they are offering a new lease. We have been in this place since July 12th, 2010 and we do not care to sign another lease. We still have 3 months left on our lease but we are willing to move but we do not have the funds. We would like to do the cash for keys but we want to make sure that we have all our ducks in a row before moving forward. How do we approach the issue with our property manager or do we just stay until they take us to court? What do we do to get the process started?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Bill
      First, read the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009 to understand your rights as a tenant of a foreclosed property. You are not required to sign a new lease. You do have 90 days from March 12th to vacate if you chose not to sign a new lease. To learn more, consult with a lawyer, or call your county bar association to learn what organization in your area helps local residents with landlord-tenant issues.

      Cash-for-keys is voluntary — it is not a program written into federal law, although some states or municipalities may have written it into law. Therefore, you are free to negotiate the best deal possible with the landlord.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2011
    Jane
    What are considered "basic repairs" for a walk through to receive cash for keys? What if a pvc pipe is shooting out water outside under the garden hose valve? Should we get that fixed before the walk through?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Bill
      What you described is more than a basic repair. A pipe shooting water is a borderline emergency repair.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Jane
      Should we get it fixed now? Is this something the bank an fix since they own the home? Any money we put into the house will be to our loss since we do not own the home? Will we loose the cash for keys if they see this during the inspection?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Bill
      Do you have a contact person at the bank with whom you are working? I suggest calling the bank and asking them what they want done. The cash for keys inspection is meant to give you an incentive (the cash) for leaving the house in good order. The bank gives you the cash to increase the chances that you will not pull out the fixtures and appliances and then hit the road. A burst pipe is a different matter. I agree that the bank should pay the costs and it should not affect your ability to get the cash. If the bank does not agree, ask to speak with a supervisor.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2011
    Kay
    Today I received a letter from BofA offering Foreclosure Alternative Assistance. My children attend school near our home so I would like to stay till they graduate in June and then relocate closer to my job. My options are to 1) short sale 2) DIL or 3) a DIL and consideration for a lease of the property. The information I have read on your website regarding a short sate and DIL have been helpful what do I need to know about a lease of property? What should I consider before I send in my request?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Bill
      The lease option sounds like a nifty deal for all parties concerned. You get to stay in the property, the servicer generates some cashflow for the investor, and the servicer gets to continue to collect its monthly fee, your neighborhood is not blighted by another empty property, and your community receives property taxes.

      A lease is a pretty basic contract. Look for the length of the contract, the monthly payment, and who pays for maintenance.
      1 Votes