If you are facing foreclosure and can no longer afford your home, you may qualify for a Short Sale—even if you don’t think you can or haven’t been able to sell your home.
What is a short sale?
A short sale, also known as a pre-foreclosure sale, is when you sell your home for less than the balance remaining on your mortgage. If your mortgage company agrees to a short sale, you can sell your home and pay off all or a portion of your mortgage balance with the money you sell it. Depending on your situation, you may be required to make a financial contribution to receive a short sale.
- 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
When is a short sale a benefit?
- Eliminate or reduce your mortgage debt
- Avoid the negative impact of a foreclosure
- Start repairing your credit sooner than if you went through a foreclosure
- May be able to get a Fannie Mae mortgage to purchase a home sooner (in as little as 2 years) than if you went through foreclosure (up to 7 years)
What is the process for a short sale?
If you qualify for this option, the process is similar to a normal real estate sales transaction. You will work with a real estate agent to market and sell your home. However, your mortgage company will also be working with you and your real estate agent every step of the way to:
- set the sale price based on the market value at the time
- collect financial information and negotiate with other lien holders
- review acceptable offers,
- agree to the terms of the sale once a buyer is in place
A short sale may take up to 120 days, but this could be shorter or longer depending upon your specific situation. If you are unable to sell your home, you may be able to transfer the ownership of your property to the owner of your mortgage.
The Bottom Line: Your mortgage company wants to help you avoid foreclosure and, in most cases, will be willing to work with you. The biggest mistake you can make is to wait any longer to take action. Contact your mortgage company today to determine if you are eligible for a Short Sale.