Do talk to your attorney and tax accountant to see if short sale or foreclosure is the way to go in your situation. There are many programs that can help you and some of them may pay you to do a short sale. We have had several sellers get a large payoff at close of escrow to do the short sale. The last one was paid $25,000.
Ron & Brenda Cunningham
West USA Realty
*** Recognized in the Phoenix Business Journal as "One of The Top 50 Realtors in the Valley"
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If the only bad thing on a renter's credit is a foreclosure, I recommend that my clients move forward. If the credit report reveals a pattern of missed or late payments (except mortgage), I will recommend that my clients wait for a better qualified candidate.
As for renting, as long as you have your deposits ready to put down and have approx 3 x the income for the rent, most landlords are not looking at foreclosures or short sales since those are the majority of the tenants currently! Expect up to 1 1/2 times the rent in deposits PLUS pet deposits which vary greatly by Landlord.