What Is the Process to Remove Items from a Foreclosed House?

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Recent world issues have brought on tremendous financial struggles for many people. For a while, the housing market was doing terrible given many people didn’t have the funds to pick up and purchase a new home.

Also, many people were not able to make the same streams of income as they were before because some were laid off from their jobs or just not able to go to work due to the COVID-19 restrictions set in place. Unfortunately, this caused people to lose the ability to pay for their houses. This is where the concept of foreclosure comes into play.

There are always foreclosed houses on the market that are available to be purchased by everyday consumers looking for a new place to call home. Given their foreclosure status, they are priced lower than similar homes also on the market.

There are certain stipulations that a house must meet before it’s been officially foreclosed. Everyone in the housing market should be aware of these requirements so they can feel confident in their abilities to make smart housing purchases. Also, anyone who is currently having their home foreclosed should know what rights they have to their property before the process is complete. Keep reading the article below to find out the information you must know when trying to remove items from a foreclosed home!

What Is a Foreclosed Home and How Does the Foreclosure Process Work?

A foreclosed home is taken from its original owner by the bank because that original owner wasn’t able to adequately make payments. When a home is being foreclosed, the bank seizes the house and puts it up for sale. Once this occurs, the house is now officially owned by the bank. You may be wondering why the bank is able to take the property in the first place.

Whenever you sign a mortgage contract, the contract itself establishes a lien on your property. This gives the bank the assurance they need to be confident that you will fulfill your mortgage payments on time. If you fail to make your mortgage payments, the bank can take possession of your property. This usually occurs if the residents of the home have missed their mortgage payments for several months in a row.

Clearly, this is a very complex process that does not occur quickly. If your home is currently being foreclosed, there are some important concepts you should understand before your house officially goes on the market.

Payment Default

This is what happens when the owner of the home misses their first mortgage payment. The notice of this default is then sent by the bank to the homeowner after they’ve continuously missed their payments for 90 consecutive days. Depending on your specific contract, the point in time at which the bank sends you this referral could vary. This time could also vary based on the policies that were agreed upon during the signing of the contract by the lender and investor within this mortgage. The bank is usually fair about allowing the homeowner to create a new payment plan if their current plan is not working well. If your home is being foreclosed, you may still have time to discuss a new payment plan with your bank.

Notice of Trustee’s Sale

Once this notice has been issued, the lender has to put on record with the county that this new house is on the market. This also includes publishing the home in the local newspaper. If someone is looking to buy your foreclosed home, they should also be able to find the details online. After this notification has been made public, the bank will most like try to sell your house at a public auction.

Real Estate-Owned

If by chance your foreclosed home doesn’t get a bid at the public auction, the bank will then automatically become the owner of your property. Then, they have every right to make attempts at selling the home through traditional real estate methods. If someone is looking to buy a foreclosed home, this is the part of the process where they are able to do so.

What Can Be Taken from a Foreclosed Home

If you are unfortunately going through a foreclosure, there is no need to panic. You still have rights during this process and there are certain actions you can take at various stages that will help you get through it all with your head held high.

During the pre-foreclosure stage, you are still considered the legal homeowner of your property. Even if the property has been successfully sold at the foreclosure sale, your designation is that of a tenant so you are still able to take your personal belongings from the premises. You can take every personal belonging in the house that isn’t classified as a permanent fixture.

If you have any clothes, sculptures, pictures, jewelry, or any other item that is easily removable, you are allowed to take this from your home. You are also allowed to take rugs, curtains, window coverings, furniture, and any other larger items that can be easily removed.

When it comes to larger electronic devices, there are certain items you are allowed to take with you when you go. You can remove refrigerators, televisions, washers, dryers, and other electronics that fall under the same category. Just ensure you are not removing any electronics that are permanently built into the house. As there are many items you are allowed to remove from the property, there are also some items that must stay put or you risk getting into significant legal trouble.

What Can Not Be Taken from a Foreclosed Home

There is a specific list of items that you are not allowed to take from your home even if it’s still in a pre-foreclosure status. Think of everything in your home that is fixed into its current place, those are all the items you can’t remove. This includes dishwashers, garbage disposals, counters, cabinets, AC units, fire alarms, toilets, sinks, tubs, etc.

As you can see, a lot of these items are basically immovable so you can easily distinguish the fixtures you can’t take from the loose items that are yours to keep. When you’re trying to remove items from your property, just ask yourself whether or not the removal process would cause damage to the home in any way.

What Are the Options for Foreclosed Home Cleanouts?

When it comes to removing the junk from a foreclosed home, you have two main options to choose from. You can carry out the removal process yourself or hire a junk removal company to take care of everything for you. If you want to remove the junk yourself, you should know that there is usually a lot of heavy lifting involved.

Although there is heavy work, the work is not impossible to complete on your own. Especially if you are tight on any funds, trying to get everything out on your own may be your only option. If you have larger items of furniture, you may need to recruit the help of family members or friends to help you get those pieces out of the home. Other than that, you should be able to remove the smaller items on your own if you so choose.

On the other hand, you could hire a junk removal company that specializes in these jobs to remove the items for you. This could be a very strategic and cost-effective way for you to get everything out of your home quickly. With this option, you don’t have to worry about the stress of trying to pick up the heavier items on your own because these professionals will get everything removed for you in a timely fashion.

If you don’t leave the home in a sellable manner once it is foreclosed on, real-estate professionals may choose to hire junk removal companies for their services. They not only can remove the junk, but they also clean the home so it is presentable to potential buyers.

Removing Junk from a Foreclosed Home Yourself

The process to remove the junk yourself is fairly complex and requires a few different steps.

Step 1: Gather All Necessary Tools for the Job

There are various tools needed to allow yourself the ability to move on your own. If you end up making a settlement with your bank, they are most likely going to want the property left in a tidy condition so they are able to sell it to the next homeowner. This means that you need to have the means to remove your personal property and clean the home to standards.

To successfully complete this process, you need to have separate tools for the indoor and outdoor cleaning portions of this project. The indoor tools include a flashlight, extension cords, broom, dustpan, shop vac, hammer, nails, pry bar, wrench set, trash bags, paper, pencil, drill, drill bits, screwdriver, and screws. There may be a few tools that aren’t on this list that you find yourself needing once you get started as well.

Most of these tools will allow you to give the home a proper sweep through to make sure you’ve truly taken all your personal belongings. You can use some of the handier hardware to detach larger electronics such as the television or the washing machine. Please use care when handling these items and make sure they are unplugged from all power sources before you try to dismantle them.

If the outside of the property is in disarray, you may need to utilize some outdoor tools that will make the land more presentable. Some of these tools include a lawnmower, shovel, rake, weed whacker, expandable ladder, leaf blower, ax, tree pruner, and power washer. Again, these may not be all of the tools you need but this is a great start.

The main areas outside the property you need to focus on require making sure the lawn is in good shape. As long as the property doesn’t look like a jungle, you should be good to go.

Step 2: Inspect Your Home

Although you are the one who has been living in this home, it never hurts to make a plan before you officially get started on this project. There are going to be multiple rooms you have to move so you want to go through your house and make notes. You should note all of the larger items that will need more attention from you as you go through the junk removal process.

If certain rooms have a greater number of larger items than others, you can plan to start with those areas so you only have to focus on the smaller items towards the end of the project. Also note any hazardous materials that may harm or cut you in any way as you’re trying to remove them from the property. At this point, if there are any areas of your home that have active leaks such as gas, shut off the gas and then you may want to consider calling in a professional to complete the rest of the job.

Step 3: Make a Personalized Plan for Waste Disposal

As you’re going through all of your old belongings, you are bound to come across some items that you don’t necessarily want to keep. Instead of just taking them with you and trying to throw them out later, cut your work in half by preparing a plan for waste disposal prior to getting started. Once again, you can get rid of the waste yourself or hire a hazardous waste company.

If the materials you need to throw away are small items that aren’t dangerous, you can purchase large garbage bags and dispose of any unnecessary items as you go through the junk removal process. If you know your home contains hazardous waste or there are pest infestations, you should hire a specialist to take care of these issues for you so you don’t cause any negative impacts to your health. They will be able to tell you if the rest of your home is safe to continue cleaning.

Another option is for you to rent a dumpster that can be there for you the day you decide to clean out your home. All you need to do is call them a few days in advance so they can be there on the scheduled day you specify. Once they pull the dumpster container into your driveway, you are able to dispose of all the larger items as well as the smaller debris.

Step 4: Begin the Junk Removal

Now is the moment you’ve been prepping for. You already have your plan of attack, so now you can get started on removing all of the junk from your home. Even if you don’t choose to use a professional junk removal company for this work, you may still want to recruit some of your loved ones to help you out with the larger items. These will be very difficult to lift and move all by yourself!

If you don’t really plan on keeping much, the dumpster is a great idea because you can just instantly throw everything away right when you take it out of your home. For the smaller miscellaneous items, you can just throw these items into large garbage bags as you walk through your home. This will be an easier method for you rather than walking outside to the dumpster every time you pick up a few small items off the ground.

Step 5: Sanitize the Interior of the House

Once you’ve removed all your personal belongings from the house, the place will look pretty barren and dusty. You will need to do a quick cleaning of the bare interior to make sure the home is in fair shape. Use the indoor cleaning tools listed above to clean every room of the house. Clean all the rooms on one level and then move on to the next so you can make sure you don’t miss any spots.

Use a duster to get on top of any higher surfaces like the mantles or countertops. Then, use the shop vac for any dust bunnies that may be floating around the floor. After the dusting is complete, you can use the mop for the final layer of sanitization.

Step 6: Clean the Outside of the Property

Your final step will be making sure the lawn is in good condition. While the dumpster is still in your driveway, throw away any large or small debris that may be currently located on the lawn. This can be actual trash or an old playset that you don’t want to take with you but can’t leave in the yard. This portion won’t be too much work if you keep your lawn in pretty decent shape!

You will finish up the last step by making sure the grass itself looks good. You can rent a yard waste dumpster to throw out any overgrowth in your yard. This will allow you to quickly dispose of it without having to wait for the normal curbside pickup and risking the garbage bags being blown open across the street!

Once you have removed all of the overgrowth and shrubs, you can use a weed whacker and lawnmower to get rid of everything else. This part should be simple and easy. After this, you’re good to move on to your next adventure in life!

What It Means to Use a Junk Removal Company

If you do not have the means or the tools to complete the junk removal yourself, that’s no problem! Another route you can take involves using a professional junk removal service. They will remove all of your personal belongings for you. This company will also handle the house cleaning aspect as well.

When choosing the firm that will best suit your needs, you need to make sure they provide the exact services you want. Some house cleaning companies will not want to clean foreclosed homes so if your home has already been officially foreclosed, this is something to consider. Moreover, if your house also needs a significant amount of cleaning, make sure the junk removal company you hire performs cleaning services in addition to the junk removal.

In general, the process of going through a home foreclosure can be very stressful on you so you don’t need to add another stressor to your plate. Make sure you do your research on the reliability, speed, and quality of service for each junk removal company. You want to focus on hiring a company that will truly take the hassle out of clearing out your stuff for you. It also may be a great idea for you to contact the company before purchasing to make sure they can satisfy all your service requests.

Which Is the Best Option for You?

Dealing with home foreclosure is not an optimal situation to be in. Understanding all of your options for the removal of your property can be crucial when trying to get out of this process with your dignity still intact. Even if you want to tackle this project on your own, there may be a few steps along the way where you want to call in the professionals for help!

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