Maryland joins Ohio with new law to fast track the foreclosure process for vacant homes

Maryland: In a move to reduce community's properties devaluing due to vacant property, Governor Larry Hogan has signed into law a means for expediting the foreclosure process.

The foreclosure fast-track provisions of Maryland HB 702/SB 1033, passed the Maryland General Assembly unanimously (Senate vote: 47-0) (House vote: 139-0).

Of the changes, “A secured party may petition the circuit court for leave to immediately commence an action to foreclose a mortgage or deed of trust on residential property on the basis that the property is vacant and abandoned … the circuit court shall rule on the petition promptly after the petition is filed.”

A property is considered “vacant” if all the following apply: the mortgage / deed of trust has been in default more than 120 days; no petition from the mortgagor or grantor has filed an objection that would prevent a judgement of foreclosure; no written statement has been filed with the court a statement the property is not vacant; and if at least three of the items listed in subsection (D) of Senate Bill 133 are true, some of those items being: junk/litter present, boarded entries, empty interior, utilities off, vandalism, building deterioration/decline,  and property continually locked up or continually unlocked.

The Maryland bill for fast-tracking foreclosures comes almost a year after Ohio signed similar laws into place, with other states currently mulling like options.




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