Home Selling in Guttenberg>Question Details

Jsage, Home Seller in Guttenberg, NJ

all the owners in my condo complex are short selling and killing our values. what can I do to sell my condo without resorting to a short sale too?

Asked by Jsage, Guttenberg, NJ Thu Nov 3, 2011

Help the community by answering this question:


The answer depends on how far underwater you currently are on your mortgage.

If you're not that far off, then you can bring a bit of money to the table and offer your condo as a regular sale at a higher price. Homes which are not financially distressed are easier for the buyer to buy and finance. The premium you should get is around 10-20%. Hopefully that covers you.

If you're deep underwater, like 25% or more, then you'd have to hold on and wait out the market. When the tide is out, it's hard to set sail. Some can't wait and are abandoning ship. But, eventually, the tide comes back in. You just need to have enough cash flow to sustain your ship.
Web Reference: http://www.archershomes.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 4, 2011
Really good advice from "J." (And I agree with her on the abuse, too.)

Use your conventional sale as a marketing edge. Someone can come in, make an offer on your property, and likely close on it in 45-60 days. If the buyer pursues a short sale, it might be 90 days, 120 days, 180 days, etc., with no real assurance that the deal will even go through.

One other possibility (though I'd certainly just try a conventional sale first) is offering it as a lease-option. You might be able to get more (the option price) than you could get with a regular sale today. But, considering that many of the condos in the complex are underwater (as perhaps yours is), make sure you're offering a long-enough option period to the buyer to allow prices to stabilize and strengthen sufficiently.

Some condos have restrictions against renting. If that's the case with yours, consider a land trust instead. See http://www.landtrust.net In that case, you'd transfer your property to your own trust. Then you'd add the potential buyer ("resident beneficiary") as another beneficiary to the trust. Since the trust (the trustee, actually) would own the property, and the resident beneficiary is one of the owners of the trust, you'd have an owner living in a unit he/she owned. (I know that sounds pretty complicated. But it is a viable way to get around condos that don't allow rentals.)

Hope that helps.
Web Reference: http://www.landtrust.net
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 4, 2011
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Fairfax, VA
First, short sale options are being massively abused in today's market. Advertisting a property to be sold as a short sale option does not mean it CAN be sold as a short sale option. Many home owners do not qualify for the option yet pursue it to postpone foreclosure, or, investors seek it out to postpone foreclosure and collect as much rent before foreclosure. Values are not affected unless the properties are actually sold. These numbers are then used in part to evaluate the properties with appraisers and bankers.

With that said, most buyer clients I work with in today's market have specifically said they do not want to go through the hassels of a potential short sale property because me or them have no clue if it is legitimate or not. They are spending the extra money to purchase homes that can be legtimately sold on the open market at FMV. This is your opportunity to shine in making it clear to buyers there is little red tape, it can be sold quickly and close in minium time---not 6, 10, 12 months. This is truly your marketing edge, and if done correctly, you may be surprised at the outcome. Good luck to you!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 4, 2011
Funny how none of these mention the option of walking away ie defaulting. It may take 5-15 years for market values to recover and for you to break even depending on your current value:loan situation. Its in agent's interest to keep you from selling short or defaulting and this is why they never propose it, even when it may be the best option for owners.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 15, 2012
Great additional advice Don! There are many options for sellers and sharing opinions on Trulia HAS made a significant difference in the lives of many who have taken the time to ask. We here for you Jsage! Good luck to you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 4, 2011
Hi Jsage,
Maybe just keep the condo until it's paid off. Good Luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 4, 2011
Hi there, Bill is right - though five years ago shorts and bank owned may have been excluded from the view of buyers and appraisers in assessing value, that is no longer the case. Buyers are actively pursuing distressed properties and in some cases they dominate the sold comps. They are impacting value, period.

My advice to you is the same advice I give all sellers - price your home aggressively right out of the gate AND prepare it so that it is the most attractive offering. The combination of best condition and best price will bring your sale.

There will be buyers who do not want to deal with distressed properties - that will be your target. But you must not lose sight of the fact that they will factor in the distressed comps in their value equation. You will not get more than market value for your property and the better you price it early on when you have the attention of the online buyers (more than 90% search online today!), the more money you will yield.

Find the best agent you can and listen to her advice on pricing and prepartion/staging. Be sure to select an agent that will explosively position your condo online because that is where the buyers are.

Good luck to you!
Jeanne Feenick
Unwavering Commitment to Service, Unsurpassed Results
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 4, 2011

Like it or not, short sales and foreclosures are your competition and they do/will impact your property value.

Since this is the case, selling your property will likely depend strongly on how you price it. Buyers are sometimes willing to spend a little more for property that is in "tip-top" condition and shows well. To that end, we recommend that you do everything you can to set your property apart from the distressed sales by making it "shine" in the public's eye.

The bottom line is that we can't erase the sale prices of property that has recently sold and these values are the ones that appraisers and lenders will pay close attention to when considering future property value.

This is a real dilemma that is fueling the distressed market. Eroding home equity is a problem of huge proportion that in my opinion is primary to turning the real estate market around.

Good luck,

0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 4, 2011
The short-sales don't "kill your values". Prices are correcting.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 3, 2011
Well, if you are underwater too, then your choice is either to do a short sale, or continue to pay for a loan that is more than the value of your home, if that is your situation. If renting out your home will cover your house payment, then that is a possible way to weather the storm until property values increase, and perhaps keep your credit. Best, Terry Bell, Realtor, Santa Rosa, CA
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 3, 2011
Hi Jsage,

If the SOLD comps in your area are selling for less than what you need to sell at to avoid a short sale, you will need to wait - hoping the market improves but keeping in mind it could get worse. No one is going to buyer your property if it is priced significantly higher than other properties in your area.

Shanna Rogers
SR Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 3, 2011
Not much unfortunately. Have your agent remind potential buyers of the uncertainty of short sales even getting approved and the time they take to close if ever. It's worth paying a premium to some if they like the complex and need to move right away.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 3, 2011
In my opinion you should try to sell at a later date when the housing prices are better. If you are selling because you have to move or something you should consider renting your condo for the time being and sell it when the prices are up. Rent is pretty high in a lot of areas so you should be able to get enough each month from your tenant to cover your monthly mortgage payment plus some. Once the short sales and bank owned properties are gone you should be able to get more for your condo.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 3, 2011
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