Short Sale Madness

Almost daily I get questions from people about the short sale process. Short sales can be difficult and frustrating if you don’t know what to expect. In fact, some real estate professionals won’t even do short sales! It’s true that there are great deals to be had and that most lenders have gotten much better with their processes. Still, you hear stories of people who were ready to sign their closing documents only to find out that the house was just SOLD by the bank at auction.

If you are considering the purchase of a home through a short sale….

1) Remember patience is a virtue.

The short sale can be long process with many ups and downs. Your agent will be touching base with the bank on a regular basis however, some lenders move very slowly and they all have a “process” in which the left hand and right hand aren’t even friends some times. Things will move slowly, be prepared to stick it out. If you are under a strict time frame to be in a new home; a short sale may not be the right move…this leads to number two.

2) Trust your agent!

Everyone has either heard something about a short sale or knows someone who has been involved in a short sale. Everyone has an opinion and thinks they have expertise in short sales. You know who the true expert in short sales is?…NOBODY! Let me explain. There are a number of great agents out there who will serve you faithfully and do everything in their power to make a short sale happen. Experience and lender relationships are very helpful but, the unfortunate reality is that there are some things out of our and your control. If you are working with a great agent they will communicate with you as the process unfolds just remember it can be a slow process and there can be l..o…n..g periods of time when nothing is happening. At the end of the day there are lots of different way to purchase a house and the best strategy for you may not be a short sale.

3) Be ready.

Have your financing / funds ready and be responsive to your agent. What you and your agent can control is YOUR side of the transaction. Many lenders would greatly prefer to sell the property to an owner occupant vs. an investor. Someone who is going to live in the home is more likely to stick with the process and let’s face it…if the banks going to lose money their not crazy about another investor getting that advantage! A strong offer with proof of funds / financing and a personal letter from the buyer can go a long ways in convincing the lender to work hard and get the deal closed.

What does it look like to chase after the short sale cheese? Here’s a fun little video that looks a lot like the process can feel sometimes. Notice that even as you are closing in on the finish line you can get a nasty surprise. If you have any questions about buying a short sale property or if you would like to know more about using a short sale to sell your home give us a call.

Click here to experience chasing the cheese!

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