South Carolina Foreclosure Laws
Judicial Foreclosure Available: Yes
Non-Judicial Foreclosure Available: No
Security Instruments: Mortgage
Right of Redemption Period: No
Deficiency Judgments Allowed: Yes but with Limitations
Time Frame: Varies
Public Notice: Complaint
South Carolina is a lien theory state, which means that the property will serve as security for the loan. The document that places the lien on the property is known as a mortgage. If a borrower defaults on their loan, lenders can pursue a judicial foreclosure. Non-judicial foreclosure methods are not permitted. Once a property is sold, the borrower does not have a right of redemption period to try and reclaim the property. Lenders, however, may be able to seek a deficiency judgment when the property is sold for less than what was owed on it. The borrower will be responsible for the remaining balance. The judgment varies based on the appraised value of the property.
Types of Foreclosures Allowed in South Carolina
South Carolina foreclosure law allows for only the judicial foreclosure method. This type of foreclosure, also known as foreclosure by judicial sale, involves selling the defaulted property under court supervision. In order for a judicial foreclosure to be possible, no power of sale clause may be present in the loan documents.
The process begins with the lender taking legal action against the borrower in a court that has jurisdiction in the county where the property is located. If the court finds the borrower to have defaulted on their loan, it will allow the borrower some time to pay off the loan as well as any extra costs. If the borrower cannot settle the debt, the court will order the property to be sold at auction.
The guidelines for selling a defaulted property in South Carolina are as follows:
1. A notice of sale must be posted at the courthouse door in the county where the property is located (as well as at two other public places) at least three (3) weeks before the sale.
2. The notice must also be published in a newspaper that circulates where the property is located for the same amount of time.
3. The notice must contain a description of the property, the time and location of sale, as well as the borrower and lender’s names.
4. The sale must take place at the courthouse (unless otherwise specified by the court) where the property is located by the county sheriff between 11 am and 5 pm. It must be held on the first Monday of each month, with holidays being exceptions. If the first Monday is a holiday, the sale may take place the following Tuesday. The sheriff has the right to close the bidding early.
5. Once bidding ends, the state allows the auction to stay open for thirty (30) days after the sale. During this time, anyone may place a higher bid and win the property. This process is referred to as upset bidding. If the winning bidder at the sale does not ultimately win the property, they will be issued a refund.
6. If no objections are raised three (3) months after the sale, the sale will be confirmed and the sheriff will handle the necessary deed endorsements.
7. The borrower does not have a right of redemption period.
Seeking Legal Help
Dealing with the possibility of having your home foreclosed is a devastating thought. Unfortunately, due to the current state of the economy, hundreds of thousands of homeowners are faced with the threat of foreclosure every day. However, even those who have received a notice of sale may still prevent the seizure of their home. If you have fallen behind on your mortgage or have already defaulted on your loan, seek the help of a skilled team of foreclosure attorneys in South Carolina for help right away.
With the help of an acclaimed foreclosure lawyer, you can rest assured that your property will be protected from repossession. Your paralegal will do whatever it takes to ensure you don’t lost your home and are able to work out an alternative agreement with your lender, such as mortgage modification, short sale, refinancing or even a temporary halt in payments. No matter what the plan of action, your case will end with the best possible outcome when you have an elite foreclosure attorney fighting for your rights.
Whether you defaulted due to pay cuts, job loss or any other issue, there is still time to save your home. Contact a top team of foreclosure lawyers in South Carolina today prevent your home from being repossessed.