Monday, October 19, 2009

A Short Sale, Anything But Short

The first time I heard a buyer say they thought a short sale was someone who needed to sell quickly (in other words, they thought the sale would happen in a short period of time), I giggled a little. When I thought about it, I could totally understand the thought pattern. The reality is nearly the opposite....a short sale can be anything but short!
The term actually refers to the current owners needing to sell and being "short" the funds it will take to pay off the lender. So, the current owners need to negotiate with their lender an alternate repayment plan or forgiveness of the remaining debt. In today's market, banks are doing anything to avoid foreclosures, so we are seeing more and more short sales approved; very often with full debt forgiveness to the sellers.
This is truly a win for the sellers. Sure, their credit takes a hit. But, their bank accounts and immediate financial future is far better off than if they were to go through a foreclosure. And, it is expected that many of these sellers will be eligible for purchasing again in the not so distant future.
Buyers, on the other hand, need to be willing to stay the course, and hope for the best. There are opportunities and risks.  Be sure you understand them.
Because in many segments of the marketplace today, most of the available inventory is short sales, I am going to try to break down this very complex process so you're better equipped to consider buying or selling in this kind of a transaction.

Stay tuned to in the coming days.
UPDATE: Read "The Long and Short of a Short Sale: Part 1 , Part 2 ,  Part 3 , Part 4 and Part 5" by clicking on the light pink links.
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Post written by Vicky Chrisner; Keller Williams Realty
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