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Jul. 25, 2009 - Short Sale - Biggest Mistake People Make

Should you buy a short sale? is a post I wrote on Rain City Guide back in December of 2007 for a client of mine who was buying a short sale in Bellevue, WA. The 300+ comments on that post are chock full of info, including lots of people posting their real life experiences, and lots of convo back and forth about those experiences.

The only real mistake people make when making an offer on a short sale, is thinking it will perform as to process, exactly the same as a "regular" real estate transaction. The best way to visualize a short sale process, is like a Christmas present you buy in August, and stick in a closet. Sometimes a day comes where someone actually gets that present...sometimes not. You know what I'm talkin' about - look in those closets for presents that might have been :) Once I didn't like the person come Christmas, opened the sweater, and kept it. THAT is what can happen in a short sale.

  • The file can get stuck at the bottom of a pile on some banker's desk until it forecloses.
  • The seller can find the means to stay (rare, but possible). Say YAY! for that.
  • The bank may take it back (from you & the seller), and later put it on market, with the bank as the seller. You may get a 2nd shot at it as a bank-owned property.

These are all possible consequences of a short sale, and to navigate a short sale, you must understand that "the end" is not always and assuredly, a closing for you.

#1 thing to remember about a short sale is the answer is never "no" until someone other than the bank owns it. If the bank forecloses instead of it going "short", you can still have it. You just have to buy it from the bank instead of the current owner.

Most times, the only thing standing between you and getting that house, is another buyer willing to pay more.


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ARDELL DellaLoggia of Sound Realty on Seattle Real Estate process and market including Kirkland, Bellevue, Redmond, Green Lake and most areas around the top of Lake Washington North of Downtown Seattle. Phone: 206-910-1000 - Mailto:ARDELLd@gmail.com

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