Going Bankrupt Melbourne is a difficult process, but I know from meeting with thousands facing the possibility of bankruptcy over the years, that not much worries people more than the thought of losing the family home or apartment. Almost everyone is on an emotional level connected to their home – it’s where the kids have grown up, it’s where you appreciate life on a day to day basis.
Will you lose your house if you go bankrupt? The solution is a resounding maybe. (not very helpful, I know) People typically assume it’s an inevitable consequence and a part of Going Bankrupt, and as a result push themselves to the brink of insanity to not lose the family home. But when it comes to the whole process of Going Bankrupt, a key benefit of Debt Agreements and Personal Insolvency Agreements is you can keep your house. The reason is simple: you’ve agreed to pay back the debt you are in.
So how is it possible to keep my Melbourne house, you ask? It’s easier if I explain the basic principle behind the Going Bankrupt process as administered by the trustee, then you’ll have a more clear idea.
The duty of the bankruptcy trustee is to firstly abide by the regulation of the bankruptcy act 1966 (it’s a very dry read about 600 pages if you are intrigued).
Within that regulatory framework, the trustee is to help recover monies owed to your creditors, that is carried out in a bunch of various ways but it mainly comes down to income and assets. The trustees role is to collect payments over your income threshold. The further role is to sell off any assets that can contribute to fixing your debts.
What this seems is that yes the trustee will sell your house right? Not normally. The only reason the trustee will sell off any asset including your house is to get money to pay back your debts. If there is no equity in your house then it’s pointless to sell your home. This is happening increasingly since the GFC as house prices in many locations have been heading south so what you paid 4 years ago may not always reflect the price today.
A quick word of advice here if you have a house in Melbourne and are looking at Going Bankrupt: get an expert to help you through this process, there are a number of variables in these scenarios that need to be considered.
You might wonder, why would the bank want bankrupt customers? wouldn’t they need to sell your house and not take the risk? The bank that has kindly lent you the money for your house is generating good money every month in interest out of you, month in month out, just as long as you keep up to date with your repayments then the bank desires you in there at all costs. Ultimately however it’s not the bank’s call if the trustee decides that there is a lot of equity in your house the trustee will force you and the bank to sell the house.
When you file for bankruptcy you are asked to put down the value of your house and the quantity you owe on the house. A tip if you are trying to work out the value of your house: use a registered valuer as this will offer you peace of mind, don’t use your neighbours’ gut feel suggestions or a real estate agents advice to get to this figure. When you get a valuer out to your property, make sure you tell the valuer to value the property for a quick sale, see to it you mow the lawn and don’t leave the kitchen in a mess also.
Valuers used to give two valuations: one for a quick sale and one for a well marketed non time delicate sale. These days that’s not the case, but if you meet them and tell them you need to sell the house in the next 30 days you may sway the result. The idea is that you want a life-like sell now figure.
There are two main reasons this valuation technique is critical to you: one you will certainly have peace of mind ascertaining the market value of your house, and afterwards you can easily build your equity position. Second of all, your property may be worth much more than you thought. Get some guidance before carrying this out. The number of times I’ve seen clients that have sold their family home of 20 years simply to find out I could of helped them keep it; unfortunately this happens all too often
When it concerns Going Bankrupt and houses, another major consideration is ownership, in many cases houses are bought in joint names. To puts it simply a couple may be a house 50/50 using both incomes to make the payments. If one party declares bankruptcy and the other party doesn’t, the equity is only factored on the 50 % of the property.
When it relates to Going Bankrupt, this is just one of probably numerous scenarios that are likely when it comes down to the family home. Bear in mind the non-bankrupt party can buy the bankrupt’s part of the house in bankruptcy also. I have to repeat this but get some information on this area of Going Bankrupt because it is very tricky and every case is different.
If you want to learn more about what to do, where to turn and what questions to ask about Going Bankrupt, then feel free to call Bankruptcy Melbourne on 1300 795 575, or visit our website: bankruptcymelbourne.com.