buying short sale property

Asked by Rudy In Nj, 12601 Sun Feb 19, 2012

Looking at a short sale, What do I need to be aware of, pitfalls, advantages.

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Gail Gladsto…, Agent, 11743, NY
Sun Feb 19, 2012
There is a fairly good article that will answer most of all of your questions at written by a Realtor. It touches on a lot of the issues.

Please note that the banks are now tightening up the time it takes to respond with an answer and they are much more negotiable with price. They have too many short sales on their books to drag it out.
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Trevor Curran, Mortgage Broker Or Lender, Great Neck, NY
Fri Apr 26, 2013
Good afternoon Rudy,

I've been helping First Time Buyers for 23 years as a mortgage professional and I will tell you what I have always told my clients here in New York: If you are a First Time Buyer, steer clear of foreclosures and short sales.

Foreclosures are someone else's headache. The home probably has not been well-maintained and you're a First Time Buyer adjusting to paying a mortgage. Do you really want to walk in the door to someone else's deferred maintenance that YOU will have to pay for? Also, if you're thinking there are deals to be had in terms of lower prices, mostly those "deals" go to professional investors who can pay cash, negotiate hard with a Lender, and close fast.

For Short Sales, my attitude of late is that First Time Buyers should steer clear. Short Sales tend to be a better deal for the homeowner than for the Buyer. You'll wait MONTHS for the homeowner's Lender to approve the short sale; maybe as long as Six or Seven Months. Meanwhile, you're stuck in a contract to buy that home. I closed a short sale recently with a Buyer who, after seven months said this at the closing table, "I don't even want this house anymore."

And he didn't even get the "deal" on price he thought he was getting! The house appraised for only slightly more than he paid for it at the short sale price. He walked into this deal thinking he was buying a home for $100,000 less than it's value. In the end that wasn't the case.

There are plenty of motivated Sellers with their homes listed on your local MLS. Go find a good Local Mortgage Banker, get prequalified, then find a great, experienced Realtor, and buy the home you want at the price you're willing to pay.

Trevor Curran
NMLS #40140
Mobile: 516-582-9181
Office: 516-829-2900
Fax: 516-829-2944
PowerHouse Solutions, Inc.
1010 Northern Blvd. Suite 234
Great Neck NY 11021
Licensed Mortgage Banker – NYS Dept. of Financial Services

*If you thought my answer was helpful, please give me a “Thumbs Up” or “Best Answer.” Thanks!
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Robert Hoffm…, Agent, Middle Village, NY
Sat Mar 23, 2013
Rudy in NJ
Often people think that a short sale is a deal
All things considered, I am not a big fan because of the many complications along the way.
Plus it is never a quick transaction.
There is a lot of inventory now so I would educate myself on today's value of the homes that you are looking for and just look for a straight forward deal if you can
Example, we have a listing at 469k, it is priced right and in great condition
Down the block is a very similar house at $439k. This one is a nightmare to show, there is no cooperation from the owner, there is a violation on the house, etc etc etc
This is just an example, but if you can avoid them, I think you can do just as good
I'm licensed in NY, but if you want a NJ referral for a good realtor to help you, just reply
Best of everything in your search
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Anna M Brocco, Agent, Williston Park, NY
Sun Feb 19, 2012
Keep in mind that not all short sales are such great bargains, therefore during your search don't overlook some traditional sales as some may end up being a much better buy. Short sales are generally sold as is; the seller can accept any offer he/she wishes, however the final decision rests with the lender; the short sale process is longer, and much will depend on the number of leins involved, who is negotiating the sale on behalf of the seller, etc.
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Tammy Benkwi…, Agent, Somers, NY
Sun Feb 19, 2012
Advantages: you can get a fantastic deal depending on the bank. I was the listing agent on a short sale that closed in December. The bank was offering cash back to the buyer at closing and the contract sales price was indeed aggressive. The bank was also pushing hard to close on time, there was no time delay on the banks part whatsoever.

Pitfalls: Not all banks are that wonderful and some may not be as well organized to pull off a reasonably quick sale. They are indeed getting better as the laws change and they run the risk of having to foreclose which banks would prefer not to do. If a property needs a repair, the banks will usually NOT take care of it nor will the seller. So get used to the idea that you may not get everything you want, but you will likely still get a good deal.

Many real estate attorney's now have a great of experience with short sales, just make sure you have such a person on your team.

Best of luck!
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Tim Moore, Agent, Kitty Hawk, NC
Sun Feb 19, 2012
Advantages: Good price, below market price possible

Disadvantages: Might not ever go through.
Often takes a long time to get any answer at all - months to close is common if if closes at all.
Homes are often not well cared for.
Homes are sold as-is with no one willing to do repairs.
Could be unknown liens that are found at the last minute which causes more delays.
Banks often want more than the listed price.
Listed price is not approved by the bank so be ready to pay more.
Banks don't counter like a normal seller and will ignore offers.
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Margo Ramsey, , Poughkeepsie, NY
Sun Feb 19, 2012
The biggest thing you need when looking to purchase a short sale is patience. You can get some good bargains going this route but they are usually sold in "as in" condition. This puts the onus on fixing anything on your shoulders. The average short sale usually takes about six months to pull together and some banks require that you go into contract even before they will negotiate the price. The best thing you can do for yourself is get an agent who is short sale savy, a mortgage consultant who knows short sales thoroughly and also an attorney who specializes in real estate law. If I can assist you in anything else, please feel free to contact me. Thanks and good luck.
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Alain Picard, Agent, Puyallup, WA
Sun Feb 19, 2012
Advantages are you could get a very good deal. Pitfalls are you could wait a very long time to close or you could not ever close at all. Ask your real estate agent to find out how many liens are on the title so you can have a better idea of how likely you are to get it. If there is only one mortgage on the property and there isn't any other liens then you have a better chance but it still isn't a sure thing.
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Barb Kobishop, Agent, Wauwatosa, WI
Sun Feb 19, 2012
Plenty!!! Find a good Agent you can trust and are comfortable working with...that's most important. It's gonna be a long and bumpy ride.....every short sale has its own set of problems...there are no cut and dry answers or roads that they all go down. Yes, you can definately find a genuine bargain but you need to be prepared for the unexpected and have to know that Closing dates can and do change.
Web Reference:
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You will be bit surprised to find properties with almost the same price range of the property in short sale.Short Sale property is a long and complicated process. If you are handy, contractor or investor and have patience, Yes, why not, but get and experienced Realtor to guide you through the process. Keep in mind that this, in most cases is an "As Is" condition. Do your diligence about the property that you're interested and weigh it out.

Best of luck!
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