The Department of Consumer and Business Affairs operates the Homeowner Notification Program. In the program, the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder’s office sends you copies of documents recorded against your home. This gives you a chance to review the real estate documents to be sure they are legitimate. It also gives you your best chance to save your home from a foreclosure. If you live in Los Angeles County, you will be mailed copies of documents that change ownership, show loans taken against your home or a Notice of Default or Notice of Sale.
Understanding the documents
When you receive a notification in the mail, it will include two sheets which describe the mailing explains where to call for help. The notification also includes a copy of the document that was recorded. You can find out the type of deed that was recorded by finding the white sheet that has the words, “WHEN RECORDED MAIL TO” in the top left-hand corner. The title of the document will be on that page. Copies of a Notices of Default or Notice of Sale will have clear titles.
Check the document to be sure that no changes were made after you signed it.
The documents you receive from the Registrar-Recorder’s office are copies. They are smaller than the originals. You will receive the originals at a later date.
Documents that change ownership
Adding or removing a name from title changes property ownership. Signing and recording one of the following documents will change ownership:
- A Grant Deed is used to transfer real property from one person or entity to another person or entity.
- A Quitclaim Deed releases any interest in real property (Grantor) and passes that interest to another person (Grantee).
- A third document, a Deed of Trust, is recorded when a loan is taken against your property.
Home ownership is given to someone else
If you give full ownership of your property to someone else, you will be listed on the Grant Deed as the Grantor.
Check the signature to be sure that it is yours.
Part ownership is given to someone else
If you give only part ownership to someone else, you will be listed as both the Grantor and Grantee, along with the person you gave interest to. Your signature must appear on the document.
Being both a Grantor and a Grantee means that you have given part ownership of your property to someone else while remaining a part owner yourself.
The foreclosure documents
Notice of Default: Foreclosure begins when you get a Notice of Default in the mail. The Notice of Default tells you the amount you owe in missed payments and foreclosure fees. You have 90 days from the date the Notice of Default is recorded to pay what you owe. If you pay the amount on the Notice of Default, the lender cannot sell your home.
Notice of Trustee Sale: If you don’t pay within 90 days, they will mail you a Notice of Trustee Sale. The Notice of Trustee Sale tells you the date, time, and place your home will be sold. The Notice of Trustee Sale must be mailed to you at least 20 days before the day they plan to sell your home. The notice also must be posted on your property.
When to call for help
You should contact us and speak with one of our counselors at the phone number below if any of the following happens:
- You received a Notice of Default or Notice of Trustee Sale. We offer your best chance to keep you from losing your home.
- You did not give full or partial ownership of your home to someone else.
- Your signature was forged on the document.
- The document was changed after you signed it.
- The document contains an incorrect property description.
- The documents are incomplete or unreadable.
- The documents have been sent to you in error.
County of Los Angeles Department of Consumer and Business Affairs. Last change: Sept. 1, 2017