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A Short Sale is where the selling party owes more on the mortgage than the market will bear. Once an offer to purchase contract is received, the listing agent, on behalf of the seller, contacts the mortgage company/lender to negotiate them taking “short” on the payoff. The seller can receive no funds at closing and there must be some sort of hardship. The main benefit for the seller is not going thru the foreclosure process and destroying their credit. The main benefit for the buyer is that they can sometimes negotiate a price similar to a foreclosure price but without the 1 year right of redemption cloud on the title. In addition, short sale properties tend to be in better shape than foreclosed properties.
Sounds too good to be true? Here’s Why….The major negative with a short sale is the length of time it takes to get bank approval. It can sometimes take up to 90 days and many buyers cannot wait that long. When considering a short sale property, it is important to make sure that the agents involved understand the short sale negotiation process with the bank. Otherwise, they will never get it approved. Look for agents with the CDPE designation, which I have. The letters stand for Certified Distressed Property Expert. You can get more information about Short sales on the website – www.CDPE.com.
Why would a lender reduce the payoff amount? Lenders are overwhelmed with foreclosure properties, and the word is that they're getting a little easier to deal with on short sale offers. A successful short sale helps the lender to avoid yet one more foreclosure home on their books.