Short sales don't need to be a nightmare. They do involve a bit more paperwork, and the seller's lender will ask for some documents again, and again, but this is due to the fact they that will generally only work with docs that are 60 days old, or less. If you are working with a listing agent that has experience in short sales the process should go well. Most times the delays come from inexperience, not having all the required documents upfront, and not having experience in working the the seller's lender.
If all goes well, getting the third party approval can be as quick at 45 days.
If you don't have one - I would get one.
Your first short sale is not for learning.
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You have received some good advice. I think Kevin is right that you may want to check with the sellers agent to ensure that what you want done by the sellers is done, given it is their responsiblity. I'm not sure if the property is vacant or not, nor do we know the sellers intention, but it may be worth it to you if you are waiting on a short sale to make sure the property is winterized if it is vacation and no heat is on.
Your agent will be the best source of information during a short sale, best of luck!
With that said, I try to specify in the PS EXACTLY what should be done with the winterizing of the property and who pays for it as many times the sellers don't have the money to winterize. Technically all the sellers need to do is keep the heat on and do not have to winterize.
At the very least drop a call to the sellers agent and get an idea of their intentions.