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Buying a Home Through a Short Sale

Real Estate Agent with Dickens Mitchener

Buying a home through a short saleAre you interested in buying a home through a short sale?  If you are patient, have already been approved for a home loan and don't need to either sell the current home you are living in or don't have a deadline to move in to the home you want to purchase, you could be the perfect candidate for a Charlotte short sale.

A short sale happens when the homeowner owes more money on their home than it is worth but still needs to sell their home right now (either to avoid foreclosure or because they have to move right away).  A short sale is a way for the lender to avoid the lengthy process and high fees involved in taking the home back through a foreclosure.  The current real estate market offers many short sale opportunities to buyers.  But, before you start looking at your very own short sale purchase, there are a few things you should think about first:

  • There's nothing "short" about a "short sale".  While the name sounds promising, short sales typically can take several months to negotiate.  If you find a short sale you absolutely love, you may want to still keep looking around to see if there is something else you might like as well, just to keep your options open.
  • The buyer and seller set the price.  However, the bank has the final "say so" in whether they will accept that price or not.
  • Check the liens.  If the home has several liens recorded against it, it can make the short sale process even longer.  Buying a short sale is much easier when the seller only owes one lender.
  • Be realistic.  This isn't a traditional sale where you can submit a low offer as a negotiation ploy.  Banks are pretty quick to reject a lowball offer right out.  Even a reasonable one doesn't guarantee a quick response from the bank.  It's better to put your offer in for what you really are willing to pay.
  • Research the comps.  The neighborhood comps on recent sales in the area are required for short sales.  As your REALTOR®, I can provide these to you.  That way you can submit a more appropriate offer.
  • "Approved" short sales are best.  When banks have considered and approved a previous offer on a property but the sale wasn't purchased by the previous buyer, these are "approved" short sales and usually take less time than other short sales.
  • The bank decides the rules.  There are no "rules" that are set in stone.  It really is up to the bank's discretion as to which offer they take: largest down payment, cash buyer, etc.
  • "As is".  Unlike a foreclosure, no repairs need to be made to a short sale home before it gets put on the market.  However, in some cases, a buyer may get a credit on a short sale in order to get some repairs done.

If you are considering buying a home through a short sale, I am just the REALTOR®.  Let me help you through your Charlotte real estate process.  You'll be happy I did.

Robin Husney, your Charlotte real estate expert