Any Loss Mitigation Professional will tell you that running an efficientÂ short saleÂ [or loan modification] campaign is no simple task to perfect.Â Â It all starts with the assembling of the application, chalked full of homeowner hardship materials and real estate transaction documents.Â When all said and done, the initial package submitted to open lien holder review averages out to 60 + pages of documentation, with enough stuff to keep any bank negotiator busy for weeks on end.Â The sheer magnitude of each short sale application lends one reason why the short sale process tends to take 45 â€“ 60 days to generate lender approvals for Equitable Reality & Servicesâ€™ negotiators, a time frame which can grow significantly for lesser experienced, short sale agents or negotiators.Â
For this present article, I want to hone in on just one item within the short sale package - The Hardship Letter.Â The hardship letter can be regarded as the cover page for the entire application, and if well constructed, will establish a foundation upon which your loss mitigation case can be built.Â It need not be a ten page biography, nor should it be a solitary, fragmented sentence without backbone. Â A well-crafted hardship letter should fit on a single page, and concisely identify:
1. personal account info [account holder names, loan account numbers, property address]
2. the homeownerâ€™s current financial difficulties
3. the homeownerâ€™s intent toÂ sell their property via shortsaleÂ [or, if applying for a loan modification, the homeownerâ€™s request for modification consideration]
If done properly, your letter will give your bank negotiator perspective, a narrowed tunnel vision through which he or she can review your financial materials.Â Itâ€™s not the letter itself that drives the decision process ; itâ€™s the financial materials which speak up for themselves.Â But itâ€™s the hardship letter that gives this collection of pay stubs, bank statements, financial statements and tax returns a unified voice.Â In an industry with so much competition, with bank departments inundated with applications, a finely-tuned voice will help you set yourself apart from the deafening crowds.