The answer is it takes as long as it takes! All of the agents below have mentioned the determining factors. And, they are all correct. So, depending on when they started this whole thing, and when they get an offer, AND if the house goes in to full foreclosure, will determine how long you might conceivably be able to rent from them. From the first missed payment to full foreclosure can take up to 18 months.
It depends on how far your friend is into the short sale process. Usually banks wonâ€™t even talk about a short sale unless the owner is a couple of months behind in mortgage payments. After that, once they make contact with the bank it could take awhile to discuss and negotiate the terms. Then the house needs to get sold. Often in a short sale situation, I see the ownerâ€™s try to sell the house for much more then itâ€™s market value in an effort to try to recoup some of the loses. Not only does that strategy not work, because the house is overpriced, but it adds a lot of time to the process. If the house is priced correctly it will sell much quicker, however, it then needs to go back to the bank for final approval which can also take a lot of time. The whole process can take many months.
You will have plenty of time to make arrangements for finding new living quarters.
A closing ussually takes about 25 to 30 days with financing, without financing, probably 15 days.
A Short Sale with Country Wide/Bank of america, about 90 days (or more) to obtain a Short Sale approval plus the closing time. Wells fargo, around 45-50 days if done correclty, if not, 60 -75 days. ALL ESTIMATES.
Some lenders will start the Short Sale process without an offer, some will not. So in theory, there is a need for an offer, then seller signs it, it gets sent to the servicer(s), it could be a second mortgage,servicer request a Broker Price Opinion (BPO) or an appraisal or anything that will let it know about property value, and then wait some or many days to see it if makes sense for the servicer / investor or not.
I will recommend not lo live the propeerty until it get sold. If you leave the property and there is not heat at the property, it will get the pipes frozen and property will lose a lot of its current value.