This country, and our area, is recovering from the greatest financial crisis in recent history. Local home values have dropped as much as 40% from the peak of the housing bubble at the end of 2006. Many hard working families that have never had financial or credit issues are finding themselves in a hardship situation. In Florida between 40 to 50% of homeowners owe more than their home is worth.
Homeowners in Long-term Hardship
There can be many causes of hardship, some people were given poor mortgage advice and provided adjustable loans that in hindsight were clearly time bombs. Your typical home buyer and borrower trusted that lender value assessments which suggested that the property being purchased was in fact worth the sales price. Now, with the large reduction in home values, few people find that they can afford to sell their property and pay off the associated mortgage debt. The national recession and high unemployment levels have drained the savings and short term hardship resources for many homeowners.
Basically, there are basically 2 options for homeowners who find themselves unable to keep up with mortgage payments. A borrower can persue a loan modification which seeks to allow the homeowner to keep the property. The other option is a short sale which seeks to allow the homeowner to sell the property, get debt relief, and minimize damage to personal credit. Every effort should be made to avoid the worst case scenario of foreclosure.
Where to begin? Talk to your Lender!
The best place to begin is to talk to your lender. They will let you know what options they may be able to offer you and identify any special programs for which you may qualify. Based on the outcome of your lender intervention, they may recommend you consider a short sale.
What next? Contact me to discuss the possbility of a Short Sale.
A short sale is an alternative to foreclosure and may be an option if:
You are ineligible to refinance or modify your mortgage
You are facing a long-term hardship
You are behind on your mortgage payments
You owe more on your home than it’s worth
You have not been able to sell your home at a price that covers what you still owe on your mortgage
You can no longer afford your home and are ready or need to leave
What are the benefits of a Short Sale?
Eliminate or reduce your mortgage debt
Avoid the negative credit impact of a foreclosure
Start repairing your credit sooner than if you went through a foreclosure
May be able to get a new mortgage to purchase another home sooner (2 years vs 7 years)
What is the process for a Short Sale?
The process is similar to a normal real estate sales transaction. You will work with me to market and sell your home. However, your mortgage company will also be working with us every step of the way to:
set the sale price (based on current market value),
collect financial information and negotiate with other lien holders (if applicable)
review acceptable offers,
agree to the terms of the sale once a buyer is in place, and
work with the buyer’s real estate agent and mortgage lender to finalize the sale.
A Short Sale may take up to 120 days, but this could be shorter or longer depending upon your specific situation and lender.