Foreclosure Process Overview
Foreclosures in South Carolina are handled through court proceedings. The typical foreclosure timeline is approximately six months.
After deciding to foreclose, the foreclosing lender files a lis pendens, or pending lawsuit, to announce their intent to foreclose. Within 20 days, the lender files and personally delivers a foreclosure notice to the borrower. If the borrower cannot be located, the lender will notify the borrower by way of publication for three weeks. A borrower has 30 days to file a response to the foreclosure notice. If the borrower does not resolve the default, the case is referred to a hearing officer, and a notice sent to all relevant parties. The officer orders the property to be sold.
Notice of Sale / Auction
A notice of sale containing a description of the property, the time and location of the sale, and the borrower and lender’s name must be posted at the courthouse and published in a local newspaper three weeks before the sale date. A court officer or special referee conducts the sale, which typically takes place at 11:00 a.m. on a Monday unless otherwise directed. The winning bidder must provide 5 percent of the winning bid at the sale and usually has 20-30 days to submit the remaining bid balance.
If the lender waives the right to file a deficiency judgment (which allows them to pursue any debt not satisfied at the foreclosure sale), the borrower has no rights to redeem after the foreclosure sale. If the lender reserves the right to a deficiency judgment, the sale continues for 30 days after the bidding ends. During this time, anyone may place an upset bid and make a refundable deposit. After any post-sale bidding period is over and the winning bidder pays the remaining bid balance, the sale official transfers ownership and the court confirms the sale.
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