You can offer less than the asking price. However, the Lender holding the note on the property has the final say on the price. Sabrina explained it well. We work with short sales too. And the buyer ends up with more out of pocket expenses than they are expecting. The lenders do not approve most of the items that are negotiated on a regular sale, like termite repairs and home repairs. There are loans available to buyers to assist with these expenses. Be sure to use an agent and a lender that are well informed in the Short Sale process. Short sale is literally a short pay, which means that the owner cannot pay back the loan, and has defaulted. Therefore the lender is trying to negotiate a settlement between the owner and a buyer that will benefit the lender who owns the deed to the property.
Short sales can be a great opportunity, but be ready to hurry up and wait.
If you need further assistance, you may contact me, if you are not already working with an agent.