When Purchasing a Foreclosure Auction Property, How Long Does the Previous Home Owner Have to Vacate and What Can They Legally Take With Them?

Purchasing foreclosure auction properties can be a great investment; however, handling the process properly can be tricky. There are a few things to keep in mind in terms of the rights of the new home owner and the rights of the previous home owner. Prior to the sale, the current homeowner is still the rightful property owner unless it has been repossessed by the lender. They are not required to leave until the sale is complete and the proper eviction process is complete.

Many buyers are not aware of the legalities involved when evicting current homeowners after the sale is complete. Florida law dictates that the previous homeowner who still resides there is now new homeowner’s tenant. Before the new homeowner can legally take possession of the property, a formal eviction has to take place.

As the new owner of the property, you will receive a certificate of title approximately ten days after the sale, which gives you the title to the property. At that point, Florida state law requires you to apply for a writ of possession in order for you to evict the former owner. Once this process is complete, the former owner will be served by a sheriff informing them that they’ve been dispossessed of the property and are expected to vacate within twenty four hours.

Keep in mind that movable furniture and appliances are considered personal property, and the previous homeowners may likely take it with them. All items that are affixed to the home such as built-in cabinets, permanent light fixtures, etc., should be left behind by the former owner.

Stephen K. Hachey, a Florida real estate attorney, can help your wade through this process and determine a positive solution. Contact him at 866-200-4646.

The opinions in this post are solely those of the author. The author takes full responsibility for the content. Like all blog posts, this is offered for general information purposes and does not constitute legal advice.