Selling a property with a lien on it can be a complex process that requires careful planning and attention to detail. A lien is a legal claim against a property that gives the lienholder the right to force the sale of the property to satisfy a debt. In this blog post, we will explore what it means to sell a property with a lien on it and the steps you can take to navigate this process.
Understanding Lien Types
Before you can sell a property with a lien on it, it's important to understand the different types of liens that can be placed on a property. Some common types of liens include:
- Mortgage liens - A mortgage lien is a legal claim against a property that secures a mortgage loan. If the borrower defaults on the loan, the lender has the right to foreclose on the property and sell it to recover the debt.
- Tax liens - A tax lien is a legal claim against a property that arises when the property owner fails to pay their property taxes. In some cases, the government may place a lien on the property and sell it to recover the unpaid taxes.
- Judgment liens - A judgment lien is a legal claim against a property that arises when a court awards a monetary judgment against the property owner. The lien gives the creditor the right to force the sale of the property to recover the debt.
Steps to Selling a Property with a Lien on It
If you intend to sell a property with a lien on it, there are several steps a seller can take to ensure a smooth transaction:
- Identify the lienholder - The first step in selling a property with a lien on it is to identify the lienholder and determine the amount of the debt owed. This information can typically be obtained by conducting a title search or contacting the lienholder directly.
- Negotiate with the lienholder - Depending on the type of lien, you may be able to negotiate with the lienholder to settle the debt or arrange for a payment plan.
- Pay off the lien - If you are unable to negotiate a settlement or payment plan, you may pay off the lien in full before you can sell the property. This can be done by using the proceeds from the sale of the property, or by obtaining financing to pay off the lien. However, this is usually not possible (or you probably wouldn’t have the lien in the first place).
Selling a property with a lien on it can be a challenging process, but with the right planning and preparation, it is possible to navigate this situation successfully. Working with a knowledgeable real estate attorney can help ensure that you are taking the right steps and protecting your interests throughout the process. Contact Joseph DiPiazza, Esq. to speak with a knowledgeable real estate attorney and obtain the legal guidance you need.