Some homeowners own their homes free and clear, which means they don’t owe anyone anything. However, when their summer and winter tax bills are due, they still owe municipal and county property taxes. Unexpected financial troubles reduced income or being uninformed of the need to pay the taxes until they receive a Notice of Foreclosure from their county treasurer may have caused these homeowners to fall behind on their property taxes. Several choices are available to homeowners to help them think through their position and maybe receive aid to keep their house.
In Michigan, actual property tax delinquency results in a three-year forfeiture and foreclosure process. Parcels are forfeited to the county treasurers when real property taxes are delinquent for the second year. The Foreclosing Governmental Unit (F.G.U.), which is usually the county treasurer’s office, forecloses on real property taxes that are still due as of March 31 in the third year of delinquency. The F.G.U. is in charge of inspecting forfeited property, issuing due process notifications, and disposing of tax-foreclosed property. For additional information on the real property tax forfeiture and foreclosure process in Michigan, go to the Michigan Department of Treasury’s website.
What options do homeowners with unpaid property taxes have?
Notify your county treasurer that you are attempting to do so. If you have enough income to start paying regularly, talk about a repayment plan and an extension. Prepare for your meeting with your treasurer by writing down your monthly spending plan, including all income and costs. This will help you determine how much you can afford to pay.
To see if you qualify for assistance, contact the Community Action Agency in your county. In mid-2020, most received C.A.R.E.S. Act grants, which can help with property taxes.
If you are at risk of losing your home owing to outstanding property taxes, contact your county Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) office to apply for State Emergency Relief (S.E.R.) funding, which has a lifetime limit of $2,000 for Home Ownership Services.
Before the county may lawfully foreclose the property, you have until March 31, 2021, to pay any 2018 taxes. If you can’t come up with the money to set up a repayment plan, consider selling the property before it’s foreclosed on.
You might ask your city/township tax assessor about a Poverty Exemption application for your 2021 taxes if you have a very low income. You may be eligible for a property tax decrease based on your income. A Board of Assess will meet a few times a year to review applications. If you are approved, you must reapply every year. This is not a recurring subscription. Even if you are denied, you can reapply the following year.
Explore your alternatives and build a strategy using these suggestions for paying back property taxes. While facing foreclosure is stressful, knowing the tax foreclosure schedule might help alleviate some of the anxiety. When facing foreclosure, it’s critical to remain realistic. If you can’t afford to keep your home, sell it to protect what assets you have. You can get free help from an MSHDA-approved agency, such as a Michigan State University Extension housing counselor.
For homeowners suffering or having previously experienced foreclosure, Michigan State University Extension has produced the Starting Over After Foreclosure toolbox. If recovery of their house is not possible, this toolkit will provide these individuals and families with resources to help them regain financial security. The toolkit can be downloaded for free from the MI Money Health website.
Prepare yourself to apply for grants.
Please examine the Qualifications Overview and the Applicant Document Checklist below to ensure that you are ready to apply with all of your documentation when you start your application. These will serve as a guide for you. As you progress through the process, the F.A.Q.s may help answer questions. Missing documents will cause the application to be delayed, taking 45-60 days on average.
Overview of Qualifications
The program requires your landlord, property manager, or mortgage company to agree to join. (There will be no compensation provided directly to the applicant.). This program provides qualified households with a one-time grant that covers the following areas:
Checklist for Applicant Documents
Information will be kept private and will only be used to determine eligibility. Scanned copies (ideally PDF) of the following are required for a complete application. Paper copies of the application will be supplied, and a clear photocopy of the following will be required.
Please note that all pages of bank statements, mortgage documents, bills, lease agreements, and other needed material must be uploaded or copied, with no redacting or “blacking out” of information. They won’t be able to start reviewing your application until we get all of the required documents.
For information on foreclosure defense call us at (877) 399 2995. We offer litigation document review support, mortgage audit reports, securitization audit reports, affidavit of expert witness notarized, and more.