One of the many painful lessons learned from the mortgage crisis that began in 2007 is that foreclosure is often a costly, slow, inefficient, and uncertain process. The additional cost and uncertainty for lenders are magnified when the balance of the mortgage debt exceeds the value of the collateral (that is, when the borrower is “underwater”), and thus full recovery by the lender of its investment is unlikely. Ways to avoid this misery are for the lender (usually represented by the servicer for a secondary market purchaser or a securitized trust) and the borrower to enter into a deed in lieu of foreclosure or for the lender to approve a short sale.
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