fore·​clo·​sure (ˌ)fȯr-ˈklō-zhər How to pronounce foreclosure (audio)
: an act or instance of foreclosing
specifically : a legal proceeding that bars or extinguishes a mortgagor's right of redeeming a mortgaged estate

Examples of foreclosure in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Those are residents of the neighborhoods most at risk of foreclosure, based on the Owner Vulnerability Index developed by UCLA’s Center for Neighborhood Knowledge. Jon Healey, Los Angeles Times, 12 Feb. 2024 An attempt to overturn the decision may take several months, not unlike a foreclosure proceeding where a lender seizes a home after an owner fails to pay his mortgage. Rebecca San Juan, Miami Herald, 3 Feb. 2024 The owners, an Ohio couple, Tim and Jenny Smucker of the Smucker’s jam dynasty, paid $2.9 million for unit 508 in 2021 and aren’t in obvious financial distress, Crain’s reports — in that this is not a foreclosure or government-run auction — or seemingly any financial distress. Curbed, 3 Jan. 2024 At the time of the foreclosure, the GBTC shares traded for $9.20 each. Nina Bambysheva, Forbes, 11 Dec. 2023 An auction and foreclosure looms because a $3 million loan the bank provided for the property in 2020 has tumbled into default and delinquency. George Avalos, The Mercury News, 11 Jan. 2024 The city took the property as part of a surge in foreclosures in cities across Florida documented earlier this year in a Miami Herald series, The Foreclosure Franchise. Ben Wieder, Miami Herald, 22 Dec. 2023 In fact, the couple had lost their home to foreclosure and would be forced to move out. Jamie Yuccas, CBS News, 2 Dec. 2023 Leading up to the foreclosure crisis, home buyers signed on for teaser rates that then reset and caused monthly payments to balloon above borrowers’ ability to pay them. Anna Bahney, CNN, 16 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'foreclosure.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1713, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of foreclosure was in 1713

Dictionary Entries Near foreclosure

Cite this Entry

“Foreclosure.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Feb. 2024.

Legal Definition


fore·​clos·​ure fōr-ˈklō-zhər How to pronounce foreclosure (audio)
: a legal proceeding that bars or extinguishes a mortgagor's equity of redemption in mortgaged real property see also deficiency judgment at judgment, redeem, right of redemption, statutory foreclosure, strict foreclosure sense 1
: the extinguishment (as under the provisions of Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code) of the rights of a debtor in personal property subject to a security interest by judicial proceedings and especially by judicial sale see also strict foreclosure sense 2

More from Merriam-Webster on foreclosure

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