Is there a legal way to give your house back to the bank? without damaging your credit? Negotiate to pay loan balance minus ins, prop tax and escrow

UPDATED: May 26, 2009

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Is there a legal way to give your house back to the bank? without damaging your credit? Negotiate to pay loan balance minus ins, prop tax and escrow

My fiance purchased a house eight years ago for $104,000 in SW Florida. We still owe a little over $90,000 and the house is in need of major renovations? Air condition does not work, new roof, plumbing, electric… and everything cosmetic! We can not afford the appoxamated $40K in renovations and can NOT get an equity line! The house is unlivable on any standard! We are planning to get married in September but do not want to start a family in this house. We know that it is not legally sellable and do not know what to do. I am turning 30 and he is 32 so we want to be done with this property

Asked on May 26, 2009 under Real Estate Law, Florida


J.M.A., Member in Good Standing of the Connecticut Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 13 years ago | Contributor

This is an unfortunate situation.  I suggest one of two things.  Call one of those companies "I Buy Houses" or other smimilar companies that buy distressed properties and try to sell it for what is owed on the mortgage.  If no one will pay for that, you may not have a choice but to give it back to the bank - which will hurt your credit.  If you know anyone that is a handyman, maybe you can make a deal to have him repair the house at his cost where you can rent it out and give the handyman a percentage ownership of the house and 1/2 of any rental income.  If that is not an option, giving the house back is probably your only choice...

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