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Are Short Sales For You?

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By : Garn G Christensen Jr GRI    99 or more times read
6 Questions to ask yourself prior to making an offer on a short sale property.

  1. Are you very patient?

    To get lender approval it can and does take about 2 months. If there are more than one lender or investor involved it can take up to 6 months or longer for approval. As a general rule understand that it takes a minimum of two months to hear back from the lender as to whether or not they will accept your offer.

  2. Is your financing in order?

    It is important to present your best foot forward. Most lenders want cash, so if your offer isn’t an all cash offer, make sure that you can show that you are qualified and that you have your financing in order. A real problem for some prospective homeowners is the fact that there should be no big purchases or even items bought on a credit card during the time between your pre-approval and the time that you close your transaction. These purchases can have an effect on your credit scores and can make or break the conditions of your pre-approval.

  3. What are your time restrictions?

    Again it can be months before you even hear back from the various Lenders and Investors. Can you realistically afford to wait 3 to 6 months before finding out if you have a deal and then an additional 30 to 60 days to close and begin the repairs needed to move into your new home?

  4. Are you working with a qualified real estate professional?

    Does your agent have any experience with short sales? Does your agent have any additional certifications or accreditations that set them apart as a short sale professional?

    The National Association of REALTORS® provides the SFR designation.

  5. Have you had a title officer do a search on the short sale property to see all the liens that are attached to the property?

    If there are lien holders it’s harder to close the transaction. So you need to know exactly what the true status of the property is, prior to making an offer.

  6. You do understand that Short Sales are ‘as is’ don’t you?

    It is unlikely that you will get an allowance from the seller for the repirs that are most likely needed. I would recommend that you have the property inspected by a reputable company so that you know just what you are getting into. Remember, the seller is distressed and the last thing they will want to do is to make any repairs.

Short sales are a viable option for those who are patient, and willing to go through the process of making and waiting for a short sale offer to be accepted and to close. It’s important to not lose sight of your prospective when looking at short sales and REO’s.
Garn G Christensen Jr GRI.,Short Sale Certified/REO-Forclosure Certified is an Associate Broker with ZipRealty and Award Winning Builder. You can take virtual tours of many of the homes he has built or has listed at: or you can contact him at Or you can follow him at

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