Nevada Foreclosure Laws and Procedures

How does the Nevada foreclosure process work? Find out about Nevada's foreclosure laws here.

By , Attorney (University of Denver Sturm College of Law)

Before the foreclosure crisis, federal and state laws regulating mortgage servicers and foreclosure procedures were relatively limited and tended to favor foreclosing lenders. Now, however, many federal and state laws give protections to borrowers. Servicers generally must provide borrowers with loss mitigation opportunities, account for each foreclosure step, and carefully comply with foreclosure laws.

Also, most people who take out a loan to buy a residential property in Nevada sign a promissory note and a deed of trust, which is like a mortgage. These documents give homeowners some contractual rights in addition to federal and state legal protections.

So, don't get caught off guard if you're a Nevada homeowner behind in mortgage payments. Learn about Nevada's foreclosure laws and process, from missing your first payment to a foreclosure sale.

What Are My Rights During Foreclosure in Nevada?

In a Nevada foreclosure, you'll most likely get the right to:

  • receive preforeclosure notice
  • apply for loss mitigation
  • receive certain foreclosure notices
  • get current on the loan and stop the foreclosure sale
  • receive special protections if you're in the military
  • pay off the loan to prevent a foreclosure sale
  • file for bankruptcy, and
  • get any excess money after a foreclosure sale.

Once you understand the Nevada foreclosure process and your rights, you can make the most of your situation and, hopefully, work out a way to save your home or at least get through the process with as little anxiety as possible.

What Is Preforeclosure?

The period after you fall behind in payments, but before a foreclosure officially starts, is generally called the "preforeclosure" stage. (Sometimes, people refer to the period before a foreclosure sale happens as "preforeclosure," too.)

During this time, the servicer can charge you various fees, including late and inspection fees, and, in most cases, must let you know how to avoid foreclosure, and send you a breach letter.

What Is the Nevada Homeowner's Bill of Rights?

The Nevada Homeowner's Bill of Rights, which has protections for borrowers similar to federal law, protects borrowers facing possible foreclosure in Nevada. (Nev. Rev. Stat. §§ 107.400 and following).

Notice to Distressed Borrowers Under Nevada's Homeowner's Bill of Rights

At least 30 calendar days before recording a Notice of Default (see below) or starting a judicial foreclosure action (see below) and at least 30 calendar days after a borrower's default, the servicer must provide the borrower a written notice containing, among other things:

  • a summary of the borrower's account, including information related to the loan, such as the total amount needed to cure the default, the principal balance, the date of the last payment, and contact information to inquire about the loan
  • information about available foreclosure prevention alternatives
  • contact information for one or more housing counseling agencies, and
  • a statement of the facts supporting the servicer's or lender's right to foreclose. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.500).

Servicer Must Reach Out to Distressed Borrowers

The servicer must contact the borrower in person or by telephone to discuss the borrower's financial situation and explore options to avoid foreclosure 30 days before starting a foreclosure. However, if the servicer can't reach the borrower, it may proceed with foreclosure if it meets certain calling and mailing requirements. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.510).

No Dual Tracking Under Nevada's Homeowner's Bill of Rights

Once the borrower submits a complete loss mitigation application, the foreclosure is stalled while the loan servicer reviews the application and makes a decision. The servicer must decide to approve or deny loss mitigation no later than 30 days after the borrower submits a complete application. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.530).

Even if the lender denies the loss mitigation, it generally can't foreclose until any applicable appeals period, usually 30 days, has expired. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.530).

Single Point of Contact Requirement

Under the Nevada Homeowner's Bill of Rights, the servicer must establish a single point of contact whose responsibilities include:

  • communicating with the borrower about the process of obtaining a foreclosure prevention alternative
  • coordinating the receipt of all documentation needed to complete a loss mitigation application
  • informing the borrower of the status of the application
  • ensuring the borrower is considered for all foreclosure alternatives, and
  • contacting the person with the ability and authority to stop the foreclosure process when necessary.

The contact person remains assigned to the account until all loss mitigation options are exhausted or until the borrower brings the account current. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.540).

Applicability of Nevada's Homeowner's Bill of Rights

The Nevada Homeowner's Bill of Rights protections generally apply to first mortgage loans for properties that are residential and owner-occupied. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.450). But the protections don't apply to borrowers who have:

  • surrendered the property as evidenced by a letter confirming the surrender or the delivery of keys to the property to the lender or
  • filed bankruptcy, and the bankruptcy court has not dismissed the case or granted relief from the bankruptcy stay. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.410).

Institutions that foreclosed on 100 or fewer owner-occupied homes in the preceding annual reporting period, as established by their primary regulator, are exempt from the requirements under the Homeowner's Bill of Rights. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.460).

When Can a Foreclosure Start in Nevada?

Under federal law, the servicer usually can't start a foreclosure until the borrower is over 120 days delinquent on payments, subject to a few exceptions. (12 C.F.R. § 1024.41).

Which Type of Foreclosure Is Permitted in Nevada?

If you default on your mortgage payments in Nevada, the lender may foreclose using a judicial or nonjudicial method.

How Judicial Foreclosures Work

A judicial foreclosure begins when the lender files a lawsuit asking a court for an order allowing a foreclosure sale. The lender will automatically win the case if you don't respond with a written answer.

But if you choose to defend the foreclosure lawsuit, the court will review the evidence and determine the winner. If the lender wins, the judge will enter a judgment and order your home sold at auction.

How Nonjudicial Foreclosures Work

A nonjudicial foreclosure is also known as a "statutory foreclosure," which means the foreclosure follows the requirements that state law sets out. In this kind of foreclosure, the lender conducts the out-of-court procedures described in the state statutes. After finishing the required steps, the lender can sell the home at a foreclosure sale.

Most lenders opt for the nonjudicial process because it's quicker and cheaper than litigating the matter in court.

What Are the Steps Involved in the Nevada Nonjudicial Foreclosure Process?

Again, most residential foreclosures in Nevada are nonjudicial. Here's how the process works.

Preforeclosure Notice Under Nevada Law

Again, the Nevada Homeowner's Bill of Rights requires that at least 30 calendar days before officially starting a foreclosure and at least 30 calendar days after the default, the servicer or loan owner must send you (the borrower) a notice that contains information about the account. The notice must include the total amount needed to cure the default and information about foreclosure prevention alternatives, among other things. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.500).

This information might be included as part of the breach letter.

Notice of Default and Election to Sell

The Nevada nonjudicial foreclosure process formally begins when the trustee records a Notice of Default and Election to Sell (NOD) in the office of the recorder in the county where the property is located, providing three months to cure the default. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.080).

Mailing Requirements

A copy of the NOD must be sent to each person with a recorded request for a copy and each person with an interest or claimed interest in the property by registered or certified mail within ten days after the NOD is recorded. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.090).

Posting Requirements

For a residential foreclosure, a copy of the NOD must be posted on the property 100 days before the sale. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.087).

Affidavit Requirement

The trustee or beneficiary (lender) must record a notarized affidavit along with the NOD that gives, based on a review of business records, information about the trustee, loan, and loan owner. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.0805).

Foreclosure Mediation In Nevada

Nevada law requires that borrowers in foreclosure get the option to participate in mediation if the property is owner-occupied. (Nev. Rev. Stat § 107.086).

Danger Notice

At least 60 days before the sale date, the trustee must provide the borrower with a separate "Danger Notice" stating that they're in danger of losing their home to foreclosure, along with a copy of the original promissory note.

For owner-occupied housing, the notice must be:

  • personally served to the borrower
  • left with a person of suitable age and discretion (if the borrower is not available) and a copy mailed, or
  • if a person of suitable age and discretion is not available, then the notice may be posted in a conspicuous place on the property, left with a person residing in the property, and then mailed to the borrower. (Nev. Rev. Stat § 107.085).

Notice of Sale

After the expiration of the three months following the NOD recording, the trustee must give notice of the time and place of the sale by recording the notice of sale and by:

  • providing the notice of sale to each required party by personal service or by mailing the notice by registered or certified mail to the last known address 20 days before sale
  • posting the notice of sale on the property 15 days before the sale
  • posting the notice of sale for 20 days successively in a public place in the county where the property is situated, and
  • publishing a copy of the notice of sale three times, once each week for three consecutive weeks, in a newspaper of general circulation in the county where the property is situated. (Nev. Rev. Stat § 107.080, § 107.087, § 107.090.)

How Do Foreclosure Sales in Nevada Work?

At the sale, the lender usually makes a credit bid. The lender can bid up to the total amount owed, including fees and costs, or it may bid less.

In some states, including Nevada, when the lender is the high bidder at the sale but bids less than the total debt, it can get a deficiency judgment against the borrower, subject to some limitations (see below).

The property becomes "Real Estate Owned" (REO) if the lender is the highest bidder. But if a bidder, say a third party, is the highest bidder and offers more than you owe, and the sale results in excess proceeds—that is, money over and above what's needed to pay off all the liens on your property—you're entitled to that surplus money.

What Are the Options Available for Borrowers During Foreclosure in Nevada?

A few potential ways to stop a foreclosure include reinstating the loan, redeeming the property before the sale, or filing for bankruptcy. Of course, if you can work out a loss mitigation option, like a loan modification, that will also stop a foreclosure.

Reinstating the Loan

For owner-occupied housing, the borrower can reinstate the loan by paying the arrearage, costs, and fees. This right expires five days before the date of the foreclosure sale. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.0805, § 40.430).

Does Nevada Have a Redemption Period After Foreclosure?

One way to stop a foreclosure is by "redeeming" the property. To redeem, you must pay off the full loan amount before the foreclosure sale.

Some states also provide foreclosed borrowers a redemption period after the foreclosure sale, during which they can buy back the home. However, Nevada law doesn't provide a redemption period following a nonjudicial foreclosure sale. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 107.080).

Filing for Bankruptcy

If you're facing a foreclosure, filing for bankruptcy might help. In fact, if a foreclosure sale is scheduled to occur in the next day or so, the best way to stop the sale immediately is by filing for bankruptcy.

Once you file for bankruptcy, something called an "automatic stay" goes into effect. The stay functions as an injunction, which prohibits the lender from foreclosing on your home or otherwise trying to collect its debt, at least temporarily.

In many cases, filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy can delay the foreclosure by a matter of months. Or, if you want to save your home, filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy might be the answer. To find out the options available, speak with a local bankruptcy attorney.

Foreclosure Protections and Military Servicemembers

The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act provides legal protections to military personnel who are at risk of foreclosure.

Are Deficiency Judgments Allowed After Foreclosures in Nevada?

The borrower's total mortgage debt sometimes exceeds the foreclosure sale price in a foreclosure. The difference between the total debt and the sale price is called a "deficiency."

For example, say the total debt owed is $600,000, but the home sells for $550,000 at the foreclosure sale. The deficiency is $50,000. In some states, the lender can seek a personal judgment against the debtor to recover the deficiency. In most cases, once the lender gets a deficiency judgment, the lender may collect this amount—in the above example, $50,000—from the borrower.

Deficiency judgments are generally allowed in Nevada, subject to some limitations.

Nevada Statute of Limitations for Deficiency Judgments

In Nevada, a lender may obtain a deficiency judgment following a foreclosure sale if it files the suit within six months. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 40.455).

Limitations on Deficiency Judgment Amount in Nevada

But the amount of the judgment is limited to the lesser of:

  • the difference between the borrower's total debt and the home's fair market value as of the sale date, plus interest, or
  • the difference between the borrower's total debt and foreclosure sale price, plus interest. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 40.459).

If the party seeking the deficiency judgment acquired the right to obtain the judgment from a party that previously held that right, the judgment is limited to the difference between the amount the party paid to acquire the loan and the larger of the property's fair market value or the amount paid for the property at the foreclosure sale, plus interest and reasonable costs. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 40.459).

When the Lender Can't Get a Deficiency Judgment in Nevada

For loans taken out after October 1, 2009, deficiencies are prohibited for purchase money loans (that haven't been refinanced) held by a bank or other financial institution on single-family residences owned by the borrower at the time of the foreclosure sale, which have been occupied continuously by the borrower since taking out the loan. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 40.455).

Under Nevada state law, the bank can't seek a deficiency judgment against you after a short sale or deed in lieu of foreclosure when all of the following apply:

  • the foreclosing creditor is a banking or financial institution
  • the property is a single-family residence that you own at the time of the short sale or deed in lieu of foreclosure
  • you used the borrowed amount to buy the property
  • you have continuously occupied the property as your principal residence since getting the loan
  • the short sale or deed in lieu agreement doesn't expressly state the amount of money still owed to the bank or doesn't authorize the bank to recover that amount, and
  • the agreement contains a conspicuous statement that the bank has waived the right to seek a deficiency and says how much is being waived. (Nev. Rev. Stat. § 40.458, § 40.429).

How Long Do You Have to Move Out After Foreclosure in Nevada?

After a Nevada foreclosure sale, the property's new owner must give you a notice to quit (move out) before starting an eviction action in court.

What Are the Potential Consequences of Foreclosure?

A foreclosure could result in serious consequences, like lower credit scores, a deficiency judgment (as mentioned), or tax ramifications.

More Foreclosure Resources

For more information on federal mortgage servicing laws and foreclosure relief options, go to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) website.

Read More Articles

Get tips on what to do—and what not to do—if you're facing a foreclosure.

Find out if foreclosures are on the rise.

Getting Help

If you have questions about Nevada's foreclosure process or want to learn about potential defenses to a foreclosure and possibly fight the foreclosure in court, consider talking to a foreclosure attorney.

It's also a good idea to talk to a HUD-approved housing counselor to learn about different loss mitigation options.

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