Mortgage Foreclosure and What You Can Do About It

Is A Short Sale An Option Worth Pursuing?

A short sale is when the lender allows a homeowner to sell a property for less than the mortgage payoff. For example if your property is worth $120,000.00, and the amount of the mortgage is $200,000.00, a bank may agree to let you sell the property for $120,000.00 on a short sale. The bank would be agreeing to take less than the full amount of the mortgage. Why would they agree to do this? Because a foreclosure takes time and money, and in the end the bank will wind up selling the property “short” anyway. In order to do a short sale, it is best to contact the loss mitigation department of your bank, and to use an attorney to negotiate the short sale with the lender.

Do Short Sales Always Work?
No. It only works if a buyer is found and approved by the lender. There are a lot of properties for sale, and few buyers. These buyers are looking for below-market bargains, and the lenders want to recoup as much of the mortgage amount as possible. The lender is not there to do you any favors and they may be relatively inflexible on their bottom line price.

A short sale is made more difficult if the home has a second mortgage. The first mortgage holder may agree to the short sale, but the second mortgage holder would have no motivation to release the second mortgage unless they got paid something as well.

Possible Out of Pocket Costs
In a short sale, the lender will not typically allow any of the proceeds to go towards unpaid property taxes, condominium assessments, or other such charges. You will need to come up with these funds out of pocket. Many times the lender agree to the short sale only if you agree to still be responsible to pay the mortgage balance. You may be asked to sign a new promissory note for the unpaid balance. A skilled attorney may be able to negotiate with the lender regarding this requirement.

You Will Have to Reveal Your Assets
Lenders require full financial disclosure as part of the short sale process. If the short sale attempt is unsuccessful, and there is a foreclosure, the lender now knows exactly what your assets are. Some people who own non-exempt assets, would rather take their chances on a foreclosure, rather than reveal what their assets are.

The bottom line on short sales: A short sale is at least worth trying, because, if successful, it could be preferable to foreclosure. It is recommended that you have a real estate attorney assist you in negotiating a short sale, in order that the arrangement with the lender is as fair as possible to you.

If you have any questions about Mortgage Foreclosures in Florida, contact us today.

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