Years ago I had a short sale contract with Bank of America for one year. Buyer loved the house; he waited and is currently happy at home. Now, while every file is treated as case by case basis; it is possible for a short sale to close within 45 days. The reason why that's happening is because the short sale process has improved significantly. They are much more efficient at collecting data and most importantly, -for the most part- they start the short sale process prior to putting the house on the market. If you are going to deal with a short sale, you will be better off working with an agent that specializes in short sales and distressed properties. Look for the SFR and CDPE certifications:
CDPE, Certified Distressed Property Expert
A Certified Distressed Property ExpertÂ® is a real estate professional with specific understanding of the complex issues confronting the real estate industry, and the foreclosure avoidance options available to homeowners.
SFR, Short Sales & Foreclosure Resource (SFR)
REALTORSÂ® who have earned the SFR certification know how to help sellers maneuver the complexities of short sales as well as help buyers pursue short sale and foreclosure opportunities. The certification program includes training on how to qualify sellers for short sales, negotiate with lenders, protect buyers, and limit risk.