Can bank change locks on my home that is vacant but for sale and not in foreclosure?

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Can bank change locks on my home that is vacant but for sale and not in foreclosure?

We’re 3 months behind on mortgage due to husband’s job relocating to more expensive town to live in. Did loan modification 9 months ago, which caused payments to go up. House is on the market and we were notified that bank changed the locks and realtor is no longer able to enter home because locks were changed.

Asked on September 26, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Normally, a bank could NOT change the locks simply because the homeowner has defaulted on a mortgage or even has been foreclosed upon; the bank would need to evict the homeowner(s) to them him, her, or them out.

However, if you are no longer resident there, that may allow them to do this; it may be the case that you have voluntarily given up your possession of them, which gives the possession to the bank--and hence the bank has the right to determine who can and cannot enter the home. So if you and your husband moved out and the bank otherwise has title to the home (whether because you turned the home over to the bank, or they foreclosed already; or even just possibly have made clear you intention to leave the home to the bank), then they may be able to do this.


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