3 Buyer Tips on Short Sales and REOs

Thinking about a short sale? Lately, it seems as though everyone is. Sellers are looking for a quick way to get out from under the threat of foreclosure. While buyers, on the other hand, are seeking a great deal on a home being sold below market prices. Here are a few facts that every buyer should know before actively pursuing purchasing a property in a short sale.

1. Short sales are never short.

The average short sale can take 60-120 days from the date of “mutual acceptance”, meaning all parties agree to the terms of the sale. Although the seller must agree to the initial offer, the bank is who gets the final word. And, as we now know, these banks can be very difficult to work with. Getting answers from them is like pulling teeth. Sometimes, it can take the bank months to even acknowledge the buyer’s request, let alone respond to it. If they don’t like the offer, more than likely, they’ll just ignore it altogether. If they do like the offer, it will still take weeks to negotiate inspections, closing terms, etc…

2. There are NO guarantees.

Buyers have been known to have to wait weeks, sometimes months for a response from the bank. Then, when they do, the buyer finds out the bank never even saw the offer, or they got a better offer from elsewhere and jumped on it.

This, of course, is not the best scenario for the potential short sale buyer. They spend all this time just hoping that the bank accepts their offer. This can be even more stressful for the buyer looking to buy a home to live in with their family. So, to homebuyers who are looking for a place to live, rather than investment property, keep this in mind. If you have a deadline to finding a place to call home, a short sale may not be for you. Explore other options to find a deal on a home you can afford

3. Banks really aren’t that motivated.

The banks are not in a rush to change the way they behave or to do anyone any favors. Between using distressed properties as tax write-offs (losses), Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) that covers those losses and the US government providing unmentionable amounts of money to bail the banks out, they don’t need to be in a rush to change or assist.

You would think that the banks would be eager to cut any deals they can with delinquent homeowners. It almost sounds like common sense to me. Here are some of the positive effects this could have:

=> Help provide relief to the homeowners in trouble.
=> Put some of the housing money back into circulation.
=> Slow up the acceleration of home value depreciation.

Sounds like a winner. Right? Well, not with the rewards the banks are receiving for being greedy. Instead of holding them accountable for their failures in the housing market, the government is willing to buy them out of the crisis situations they, themselves, created.

Weigh Your Options

All homebuyers have options. This includes short sale purchases. Be sure you have the time needed to go through this long, tedious process. If you and your family are in need of a home, short sales are a good option for getting a great deal. But, the process takes time. So, make sure that you are not under any time constraints or strict deadlines when making an offer on a short sale. Not only can it take months for the deal to close, there is always a possibility that the bank won’t agree to the terms of the short sale anyway, leaving you starting your search from the beginning again.

Have additional questions or would like to search for buying a foreclosure home>? Visit our website’s search home pages. We also have a Tampa Homes website where you can search for Tampa Short Sales and Foreclosures.