There are two stages of acceptance in a short sale. First the seller accepts the buyer’s offer, then the short sale lender has to accept the offer. The lender may counter in many ways;
- There is a possibility that the lender will respond with a counter offer HIGHER than the price that the Buyer and Seller agreed upon.
- Since the lender rarely advises on a list price prior to the listing, there is even a possibility that the lender will respond with a counter offer HIGHER THAN LIST PRICE.
- In fact, the lender often responds with a counter offer HIGHER THAN MARKET VALUE. Yes, this is not a typo, foreclosing lenders often want buyers to pay MORE than the house is worth. Why, you ask? It’s one of the paradoxes and anomalies that may never be figured out.
When the lender demands the buyers pay more than market value, there are two ways to respond:
- The short sale Realtor can appeal the decision, or,
- Give up immediately and let the bank damage themselves. Many studies have shown that banks lose on average 13% to 26% MORE in a foreclosure than in a short sale.
Your short sale Realtor should tirelessly appeal unreasonably high bank counteroffers. The bank ultimately will;
- Either recognize reality and will let the house sell at a reasonable price, or,
- Sadly the bank may refuse to mitigate their losses and insist on taking the house to foreclosure, where it could easily take them 6 months to 2 years to complete the foreclosure, put it on the market, get it sold and closed. During that period the lender is footing the bill for taxes, insurance, utilities and maintenance.