Senate passes Overbey bill to help homeowners avoid foreclosure

The Senate has approved legislation sponsored by Senator Doug Overbey (R-Maryville) that would provide assistance to homeowners who are about to lose their home due to non-payment and gives them the opportunity to contact their lender in an effort to avoid foreclosure.

The bill, Senate Bill 3519, works to find a resolution and to see if there are any governmental programs or other assistance available to homeowners to help them avoid a foreclosure sale

“This bill provides more opportunity for homeowners to work with their bank to try and find some resolution to avoid a foreclosure sale or to see if there are any governmental programs available that they can qualify for to avoid a foreclosure sale,” said Sen. Overbey. “It is a timely bill given where we are in the current state of the economy and the high number of foreclosures.”

Tennessee ranked 26th in the nation in February according to Realty Trac Inc.’s U.S. Foreclosure Market Report. The state has consistently ranked among states with the highest number of foreclosures for the past decade.

Overbey’s legislation requires that a lender, trustee, or other creditor send the debtor a notice of the right to foreclose no less than 60 days prior to the first publication of a notice of a foreclosure sale of a deed of trust, mortgage, or other lien securing the payment on an owner-occupied residence. The notice must contain sufficient information to allow the debtor to contact the lender to discuss options available to the debtor. If the trustee determines at the time of the sale that notice of the right to foreclose was not sent to the debtor as required, the debtor may request postponement of the sale for 30 to 60 additional days to allow time needed to examine other possible resolutions.

The bill now goes to Governor Phil Bredesen for his signature.

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