Generally, real estate owners are given opportunities to avoid foreclosure by setting up a payment plan, and even if they don't pay are allowed to stay in their home during the foreclosure process. In Iowa, it takes about 6 to 12 months to be foreclosed upon and removed from your primary residence. Lenders can speed this up slightly by agreeing that the price they can eventually sell the house for is the only recovery they get. This is called waiving the deficiency.
Lenders often avoid the complications of foreclosure by offering options to assist their borrowers. However, any risk of foreclosure should be discussed with a real estate attorney in order to protect the homeowner's interest. Sometimes it is best to walk away regardless.
Frequently, the foreclosure will strip away other liens on the property. If you redeem without the foreclosure being completed, this will not take care of the other junior liens that may be on the property.