Are Banks Getting Better on Short Sales?

Lenders accepting a lower mortgage payoff from an underwater seller traditionally isn’t thought of an easy transaction to complete. Lenders weren’t so willing a few years ago. But as the number of Americans underwater on their mortgages grow, more lenders are reconsidering as they try to avoid extra costs incurred to their bottom-lines that a foreclosure can cause. 

“We’re starting to see that servicers and lenders are viewing short sales as a better alternative than they had in the past,” says Daren Blomquist, spokesman for RealtyTrac. “Some of that relates to the fact that it’s getting harder to foreclose. There are additional requirements in terms of paperwork and requirements that states and judges are imposing.”

Short sales can still be complex and lengthy — they can take up to nine months to close and even after that, there’s no guarantee it’ll end successfully. “In general, it is a totally different type of transaction,” says Mike Cuevas, a real estate professional at Exit Realty in Chicago. “You’re not only selling a house, you’re negotiating debt.” 

More information at source: “Why it can Pay to try a Short Sale; Lenders may be Viewing Short Sales as a Better Alternative,” MarketWatch (Oct. 20, 2011)