Almost every Association has the one property that the owners have abandoned and that the bank is dragging its feet on to foreclose. What can an association do to try and get the bank to move along the foreclosure process?

One solution may be to file a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”). The CFPB is a government agency that was created after the 2008 financial crisis to help protect consumers. The CFPB can take action against banks that are not maintaining properties or are moving too slowly to foreclose on properties in associations.

If the property that the bank is foreclosing on is a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac property, the bank has a duty to preserve the property. The CFPB can force the bank which is foreclosing to maintain the property throughout the foreclosure process. Even if the property is not backed by the U.S. government, the CFPB can issue fines if banks are not moving a foreclosure along in a reasonable amount of time.

In order to file a complaint with the CFPB go to www.consumerfinance.gov/complaint/#mortgage. Once there, follow the prompts and file your complaint. Once your complaint is filed, the CFPB will forward the complaint to the bank. The company then has 15 days to respond to you and the CFPB. Banks are expected to close all but the most complicated complaints within 60 days.

The CFPB may not work in all situations, but it is certainly worth a try for those properties that are becoming eyesores to the community because a bank is dragging its feet.

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