It is important to know that any given short sale may have multiple offers "accepted" by the homeowner but the 3rd party (bank) will choose the best of them to consider; that is often why you see the short sales sitting on the market for so long. The homeowner is not going to make a dime on the sale; therefore they will easily agree to any offer that comes along. However, the one you are concerned with is the bank (3rd party) who will look at all offers (most of the time- unless they have accepted one) that come in and will wait as long as they want to before responding to any offer.
They don't play by the rules of Local Real Estate Protocol. You could wait until the very end, thinking "surely the bank will make a decision soon....auction is almost here". but often the bank will be the winning bidder at the auction and will then list it as a REO, often at a price higher than when it was listed as a short sale.
The benefit of waiting until it is REO is that you'll know the bank will have to respond within a reasonable amount of time once an offer is submitted and could negotiate about 25%. The downside is that it may never make it to REO if there are others loving the home and bidding at auction. Keep in mind too...not all auctions require all cash. Be sure to get pre-approved and have an adequate down payment before going to auction., You can find out the rules of the auction in advance and be ready (or even bid on line) when the time comes.
If you would like a referral for a good agent to assist you in Newberg - one who will do good ground work in advance of any offer so you are not unrealistically low-please contact me and I'll get you through to someone who will do a good job. If you are looking for property here in the Portland or surrounding area I would love to be of assistance if you need a point of contact. My approach to obtaining a short sale revolves around constant communication while waiting for an answer but with a constant progression toward other possible deals...don't stop looking just because you have an offer in on one short sale property...keep the momentum going and let the seller know you are doing so...with a goal of getting the property that best matches your needs . This is a bit of incentive to the party considering your first offer...to know you are not just willing to wait around for them without actively considering other potential properties. They could very well lose you as a buyer if they don't make it happen soon enough. There are other strategies that I would be happy to discuss if you wish to contact me directly.
On another note, keep in mind the interest rates are starting to creep up and the time frame for the first time home buyer tax credit is quickly approaching. You will even qualify fo rthat if you are not a first timer...under certain circumstances.
All the best,
June Lizotte, Principal Broker
Providing REAL Service
June LIzotte Real Estate