Legislation on changing the foreclosure process has been introduced in the Ohio Senate. Senators Louis Blessing (R-Colerain Twp.) and Bob Hackett (R-London) individually introduced two separate measures to adjust the process when property is sold at foreclosure sales.
SB 25, introduced by Senator Hackett, would eliminate the requirement that property sold at a mortgage foreclosure or execution sale is to be appraised and instead directs the county auditor to use the property’s fair market value to calculate the minimum sale price, along with eliminating the option for a county auditor to request a property sold at tax foreclosure sale be independently appraised while still maintaining the use of the amount owed or fair market value to determine the minimum sale price. Further, SB 25 would allow those seeking a mortgage foreclosure or execution sale to use a private selling officer to sell the property if the defendant to the suit does not respond. In addition to the use of the private selling officer, this measure would cap the cost involved at 10% of the sale price and reduce the amount of time an online foreclosure or execution sale is to be carried out from 7 days to 3 days. SB 25 also makes changes to the time frame in which an online foreclosure sale conducted by the sheriff must fall into as well as the advertising requirements for those types of sales.
SB 36, introduced by Senator Blessing, would ban bulk purchases of foreclosed homes and create a new structure of who and when certain bidders may enter the purchasing process. Most often, foreclosures are auctioned at sheriff’s sales in which the highest bidder wins the property. Under SB 36, if a corporation or institutional investor is the highest bidder on a foreclosed property there will be a 45-day window in which a person renting the foreclosed property would have the first opportunity to purchase it at the equal value of the highest bid, and if the renter choses not to purchase during that window, the property could be purchased by a separate buyer willing to pay above the highest bid price, this buyer must be willing to live in the property for at least a year. If after the 45-day window closes and neither the renter nor a second buyer wishes to purchase the property, then the corporation or institutional investor may move forward with their highest bid.
The OBL is committed to following the progress of each of these bills and will continue to provide updates as they move through the legislature.