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Michael Humphries' Blog

By Michael Humphries | Broker in Pembroke Pines, FL

Short Sale vs. Foreclosure

iOn REAL ESTATE | by Michael Humphries | Compass Roads Realty, Inc



It’s likely you’ve heard the term “short sale” thrown around quite a bit. So what exactly is a short sale?







A short sale is when a bank agrees to accept less than the total amount owed on a mortgage to avoid having to foreclose on the property.


on the other hand:


A foreclosure is a specific legal process in which a lender attempts to recover the balance of a loan from a borrower who has stopped making payments to the lender by forcing the sale of the asset used as the collateral for the loan.

Whether you should do a short sale or let the home go to foreclosure depends on several factors. While for some homeowners, it is easier to throw up hands and let the bank take the home, that might not be the wisest thing to do. Take these important factors into consideration when deciding what you should do.



Deficiency Judgments After a Short Sale

Judgments are often negotiated between the seller and the short sale bank. In many cases, there is no
deficiency judgment.  An experienced agent can help you negotiate any deficient balances successfully.


Deficiency Judgments After a Foreclosure


Banks are generally unwilling to negotiate deficiency judgments with the homeowner after a foreclosure. Florida law makes it quite simple for the creditor to obtain the deficiency judgment, and allows up to FIVE YEARS after the foreclosure judgment to do so.


What is a Deficiency Judgment?


A deficiency judgment is a full-fledged judgment for the total balance of the mortgage debt, including all collection costs, legal fees, advances for taxes, insurance, etc., less the claimed value of the property foreclosed on AT THE TIME OF THE FORECLOSURE.


Buying Again After a Short Sale


If your payments are in arrears yet a short sale is granted by your lender, you may qualify to buy another home with a Fannie-Mae backed mortgage within 2 years. The wait for FHA is 3 years.


Buying Again After a Foreclosure


With certain restrictions, you may be eligible to buy another home in 5 years if the home was your primary residence. Without restrictions, the wait is 7 years.



What Should You Do?


The decision either way is a personal one. More and more people in this situation are opting to do a short sale. The horror stories regarding short sales, are for much, a thing of the past. This type of sale is now commonplace and many realtors have become experts getting them to the closing table.


One of the biggest misconceptions is costs. Most sellers struggling to make their mortgage payment don't have the  money to pay the seller expenses associated with a traditional sale.  The GOOD NEWS  is there are no costs to the seller doing a short sale. In most cases the short sale bank pays for all of the seller's cost—including the real estate commission, title expenses and any property tax or home owner association dues in arrears.


Find yourself a good realtor that specializes in short sales to help guide you through the process.


Michael Humphries, designated broker for Compass Roads Realty, Inc. and writer for iOn real estate covers local and national real estate news, industry trends and market analytics. Read more of his work here.

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By Paige Wajsman,  Wed Jul 23 2014, 11:03
Thanks for the great blog, Michael!
By Michael Humphries,  Thu Jul 24 2014, 08:06
Thank you Paige for taking the time to read and comment. I thought it was worth writing. There are still so many homeowners out there that are unaware of the advantages of doing a short sale versus letting the home go to foreclosure.
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