Obviously, I was intrigued by the story in today's Journal about how a foreclosure might work in such a deal. This is apparently treading new ground. According to the story:
Islamic financial investments avoid the use of interest by being structured as leases on the property. Thus, instead of interest, the investor receives rent directly from the property. The amount of the rent is pegged to an amount a traditional investor would have received in interest.
In theory, the foreclosure of a Sharia-compliant investment shouldn't pose major problems for lenders. The lease that serves as the Sharia-compliant investment vehicle is subordinate to the underlying mortgage. So when a lender forecloses on the mortgage, the lease is canceled.
But what will happen in practice? It should be just like foreclosing on a leveraged lease, or maybe a mezz loan or UCC sale. I guess we'll have to keep an eye open.