You have some very good answer here.
Given that you are looking at retirement, I strongly advise you to consult with a financial planner, a CPA, and an attorney. I am not sure I fully understand all of your problems, but I do know that the ONLY people that should be helping you need to know ALL THE FACTS.
That means...your personal situation, including financial and taxwise, your property's market value, and any other legal issues/tax issues that may come into play.
I'm not sure where you received the information about adding 18-25% to assessed value that simply is not true. I work with many first time home buyers in your price range and truly they are all over the map right now. I could not give you an estimate on your fair market value without seeing the home and actually doing a market analysis. I would be happy to help you, but I would need more detailed information. By the way, you can find me on the CDPE website, as I am a Certified Distressed Property Expert. If you have any other questions, I would be happy to try to answer them for you.
Linda S. Cefalu, Realtor,
Remax Realty 100
ABR, SRES, CDPR
Five Star Agent Award Recipient
as seen in Milwaukee Magazine 2008 & 2009
BNI member in good standing.
If you do a short sale make sure the person you hire has experience and knowledge of the process. It is a difficult process and need someone to assit you though it. There is a designation called Certified Distressed Property Experts and you can check it out at http://www.cdpenow.com that will identify experts in your area.
First Weber Group
Certified Distressed Property Expert
I'm so sorry to hear of your complex situation. I would definitely recommend that you have a realtor that is familiar with your area view the home, prepare a market evaluation of what you home realisticallly could sell for in the current market. Make sure you give them all the details regarding your mortgage amount and any other factors that could affect the sale.
Assessed value is just what the municipality uses to collect property taxes. In reality it has no bearing on what the actual market value is. There are so many factors that affect your market value- location, condition, etc. You will also want to make sure that the person you work with is familiar with doing a short-sale, and can help negotiate with your lender should you need to sell for less than is owed.
All the Best to You!