Foreclosures in Texas always take place on the first Tuesday of the month. As a general rule, the lender must first give a demand to cure. The homeowner must be given no less than twenty (30 days is average) to come up with the money owed, “cure.” Assuming the foreclosure is on the borrower’s principal residence, this notice must be by certified mail to each of the borrowers on the note.
If the homeowner fails to cure, a second notice must be given, the posting notice, which actually states the date and place of the foreclosure sale. This notice also accelerates the obligation and gives a minimum of twenty days notice of the foreclosure sale date. In addition, the lender is required to post the notice of foreclosure at the courthouse or other usual place of posting foreclosures. The lender also files a copy of the posting notice with the court clerk, but it is not required to be filed in the land records. Some lenders combine the notice of intent to accelerate with the foreclosure sale notice.
The Texas Supreme Court has held that actual receipt of the foreclosure notice is not required for a valid foreclosure. All the lender has to do is place the certified notice in the mail. If the post office messes up and the borrower doesn’t receive the notice, the foreclosure may still be valid. Some people think that if they reject or don’t pick up the certified mail, this will somehow make the foreclosure invalid. This is not true.
If you are late on a mortgage payment, don’t count on receiving a notice. Check the foreclosure postings. When you get a notice, you may want to try to work it out with your lender through a loan modification. But also, immediately consult an attorney for options in your case. It will take time for any attorney to prepare the paperwork and help you in the event that you need to file bankruptcy. In most cases, if a home is sold at foreclosure before a bankruptcy is filed and proper notice given, filing a bankruptcy after the sale will not get the house back. If you wait until the last minute, you may not be able to find an attorney who is available with time to act before a sale.