Simple: just don’t pay the mortgage. Because here is what happens next: shortly thereafter foreclosure proceedings will begin and at some point, far in the distant future, the bank will finally complete the foreclosure process, claiming the property and putting it on the block with intent to resell (or simply raze it). How far in the future? According to RealtyTrac, the average duration of the foreclosure process for zombie foreclosures is an average of a record 1,031 days. Or just shy of 3 years.
Which means that all one has to do to live in a house which is in ownership limbo for over 1000 days, is to stop paying, pretend to vacate, then quietly sneak back and squat there until such time as the bank finally reclaims it. Which for those living in Arkansas, Hawaii, Florida, Nevada and New York is after 1128, 1112, 1095, 1055, and 1037 days, respectively.
As for such trivial things as one’s credit rating – don’t worry. Remember: Wells Fargo, desperate to push its mortgage origination business, is now rerunning the last housing bubble and will lend anything to anyone with a pulse, completely oblivious if one’s FICO score is triple, double or single digits. It’s just one of countless others desperate to find anyone to lend to in the New Normal.
Here is the breakdown of how long in the foreclosure process zombie properties remain in select states.