How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Elizabeth Prentice Your Own Question

Elizabeth Prentice
Elizabeth Prentice, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 170
Experience:  Managing Attorney for one of the largest consumer bankruptcy firms in America.
Type Your Bankruptcy Law Question Here...
Elizabeth Prentice is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Hello. We live in Illinois. We filed bankruptcy 4 years ago

Resolved Question:

Hello. We live in Illinois. We filed bankruptcy 4 years ago and has been discharged over 3 years ago. We did not re-affirm our home, but we are still living in it and making payments. We are wanting to downsize to a condo. Our present home is upside down. Can we buy a condo if we are still living in our home? I would just give the keys back to the bank and leave the home in its great present condition. I was told that eventhough the home was included in the bankruptcy, not reaffirmed and no longer appears on our credit reports we can not buy until 2 years after the bank sells our home....... Is that true? If so, we have to rent somewhere after we leave the home...... Wait for the bank sale of the home..... Then buy 2 years later? Would love to hear your insight...... Thanks
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  Elizabeth Prentice replied 9 months ago.
I am a bankruptcy attorney and I would be happy to assist you. In order to answer your question, I will clarify a few things for you.
First, if you choose to walk away from your home right now, your bankruptcy discharge protects you in that the mortgage company can not later sue you or attempt to recover from you the deficiency. This is the protection your discharge provides.
The options you are discussing are called a "short sale" or "cash for keys." In both options, there are certain contractual obligations and rules which the bank has the right to make, such as not being able to obtain a mortgage through them again for 2 or more years. The reality is that if you actually have money, anyone in America has the right to buy property. If you wanted a $500,000 home after short selling your house and you had cash, then you don't have to wait 2 years. However, obtaining a mortgage is a different story. Most of the larger banks have similar rules and regulations. Some require you wait 3 years to obtain a mortgage and others require only 2 years at their specific mortgage companies. So, to answer your question, if you choose to do a "short sale" or "cash for keys" or "give back the keys" to the bank regarding your home, you will need to apply at multiple mortgage companies to determine if one is wiling to lend to you. Each bank/mortgage lending company will have different rules. However, typically most banks you will go to will say you need two things in order to borrow money from them (mortgage): 1) high credit rating and 2) Two years have passed since the bank took back the house. If you find yourself in that situation, a good option would be to find a home that has an owner willing to do a lease-purchase option contract. This way you could rent the home for 2 years, and then when you are ready you could buy it from the owner. This is a preferred option for many who are either in bankruptcy or have received a discharge, since it provides time to rebuild your credit.

I hope my answer has assisted you and that you will provide me a positive rating!
Elizabeth Prentice, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 170
Experience: Managing Attorney for one of the largest consumer bankruptcy firms in America.
Elizabeth Prentice and other Bankruptcy Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Thank you Elizabeth. One more question, you mentioned having to wait 2 to 3 years in order to obtain a new mortgage is what most banks require from the time of the "giving back the home". Do you mean from the time I actually sign papers giving it back or from the date that the bank sells the home? When does the clock start clicking?

Expert:  Elizabeth Prentice replied 9 months ago.

That is an excellent question. Typically, the clock starts ticking as soon as your name gets off the deed. This is because the other banks (and yourself) can go to the county recorder where the home is located and find out when the new deed transferring it back to the bank was recorded. i am glad my answer has assisted you! Please remember you may request me by name for future questions.

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
< Last | Next >
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • FiveStarLaw

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3203
    Bankruptcy Lawyer. Experienced.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FL/FLAandNYLawyer/2012-1-27_14349_3Fotolia25855429M.64x64.jpg FiveStarLaw's Avatar

    FiveStarLaw

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3203
    Bankruptcy Lawyer. Experienced.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/TL/tleeders/2012-6-13_204815_TSL1.64x64.jpg Terry L.'s Avatar

    Terry L.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    2204
    Better Business Bur 15yrs bankruptcy experience. Chicago Bar
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/mnphillips2/2009-03-13_203105_10984459-249293407.jpeg Phillips Esq.'s Avatar

    Phillips Esq.

    Attorney-at-Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    950
    B.A.; M.B.A.; J.D.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/CO/cortrightlaw/2011-12-5_4117_Kevin.64x64.JPG cortrightlaw's Avatar

    cortrightlaw

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    490
    Attorney practicing Bankruptcy Law including Chapter 7, Chapter 11, Chapter 12, and Chapter 13.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/Jay1968/2006-12-03_004423_JoeRossPhoto.jpg JoeLawyer's Avatar

    JoeLawyer

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    376
    Attorney in the practice of Bankruptcy Law since 1996
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DY/Dylatess/2012-9-11_1968_BHBTemplePhoto.64x64.jpg dylatess's Avatar

    dylatess

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    370
    35 plus years of experience specializing in bankruptcy law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/US/USLawAnswers/2012-9-20_23143_20090105211638Headshot3b.64x64.jpg Brent Blanchard's Avatar

    Brent Blanchard

    Bankruptcy Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    315
    Twelve years experience in all aspects of debtor & creditor BK.