The Miami Herald is reporting the flood of South Florida foreclosures is receding in the first five months of 2010 as foreclosure filings have fallen sharply and efforts to ease the courts’ backlogs are kicking in. But Oppenheim Law isn’t so sure the decreases are going to last and believes the next big wave of filings will come soon.
Foreclosure defense attorney and legal blogger Roy Oppenheim shared his thoughts on the Florida Supreme Court’s mandated mediation process with Miami Herald writer Harris Meyer in an article published on Sunday about Florida foreclosures.
“I enjoy mediations and find them very effective,” Oppenheim said. “But I won’t mediate unless the bank has done its homework.”
Oppenheim went on to explain mediation can be successful for homeowners and the banks only if the mediator is skilled, the lender has read the documentation and also knows the value of the property and the holding costs.
Oppenheim’s comments follow the news that foreclosure filings in Broward have fallen from 51,670 in 2009 to 17,565 in the first five months of 2010. However, as Oppenheim Law explained on the South Florida Law Blog in May, this decrease in Florida foreclosure filings can probably be attributed to the new rules promulgated by the Florida Supreme Court requiring every residential mortgage foreclosure complaint must be verified and prove that the plaintiff is the actual owner and holder of the promissory note.
Oppenheim Law wrote, “Until now, banks have been abusing a Florida statute allowing them to file a foreclosure based on a “lost note.” The problem: the notes aren’t lost; the banks are just too lazy to look for them. This new rule is halting foreclosure filings in their tracks, as banks scramble to find the notes so they can foreclose.”
Also less encouraging is the fact that commercial foreclosures are increasing, and concerns of increased residential foreclosures due to the re-setting of rates under adjustable-rate mortgages may accelerate, according to the Herald.
Want to learn more about mediation and foreclosure? Join Oppenheim Law for our free monthly foreclosure defense workshop next Wednesday, July 7 @ 6 pm and check out the entire Miami Herald foreclosure story in the Oppenheim Law Newsroom.