How to Make a Payment on a Past Due HOA Fee Before a Foreclosure

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Your HOA can use sales proceeds from your home to pay your dues.
Your HOA can use sales proceeds from your home to pay your dues. (Image: George Doyle/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

Homeowners associations, often called HOAs, generally have the right to foreclose on your home if you fall behind on your HOA dues. Depending on where you live, HOA dues are no more than a few hundred dollars a year. Nonetheless, your HOA may sell your home for a fraction of its value solely for the purpose of paying off your debt. However, you can stop the foreclosure if you act in time.

Recalculate how much you owe. You'll need to pay more than just your HOA dues to stop an HOA foreclosure. When you missed your first HOA dues payment, your HOA likely began charging you late fees. In addition to that, your HOA procured an attorney's services to start the foreclosure process on your home. If you wish to stop the foreclosure, your HOA will, at minimum, expect you to pay your past due HOA dues, its attorney's fees and any interest that may have accrued on that balance.

Contact your HOA's foreclosure attorney. You likely received notice of your HOA's planned foreclosure from its attorney. The attorney, as the one directing the foreclosure on your HOA's behalf, is generally the person you must speak with to make payment arrangements with your HOA. If, for some reason, you cannot make contact with your HOA's attorney, contact your HOA. Be sure to get any arrangements in writing.

Visit your bank. Your HOA likely will require you to pay your past due fees with certified funds. Certified funds, unlike a personal check, are guaranteed by a bank, not you. Accordingly, your HOA won't have to worry about you writing a check on an account with insufficient funds to stop your foreclosure. It may also be willing to accept cash or a money order.

Move quickly. The longer you take to pay, the more time your HOA has to rack up fees and expenses. Moreover, by paying your dues well before the foreclosure date, you give yourself extra time to handle miscommunications or problems that may arise.

Exercise your right of redemption. If you wait too long and discover your HOA has already foreclosed on your home, you may have the option of redeeming it. Some states, such as Texas, allow homeowners to redeem homes foreclosed on by HOAs. This generally involves paying the foreclosure price, attorney's fees, a particular percentage above the purchase price and additional fees to the person who purchased your house. You only have a fixed number of days to redeem, so act quickly.

Tips & Warnings

  • For legal advice or assistance, hire an attorney in your state with experience handling foreclosure defense issues relating to homeowners associations.
  • Every state has its own rules governing when and how an HOA may foreclose. Contact an attorney licensed in your state for legal advice.

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