Falling behind on the mortgage payment can be one of the most stressful experiences. Most people would not choose to experience this financial burden but have some life stressor, like loss of job or divorce, that leaves them unable to meet their financial obligations. As the months of missing loan payments accumulate, it gets harder and harder to repay the loan.
It can be an overwhelming and scary situation, knowing that foreclosure could be looming at any moment. If you are behind on mortgage payments, a short sale may be the best option for you. A short sale is when you sell your home, and the proceeds from the sale are less than the balance owed on the loan. Choosing to do a short sale can give you a sense of control over your financial future and help you get out of your home responsibilities in a timely manner.
How to Short Sale Your Home
1. Investigate the pros and cons of a short sale
Do some initial research on the benefits of a short sale versus a foreclosure. Many people choose the short sale route because they hope to own a home again in the near future or believe their credit won’t be as damaged as it would be with a foreclosure. Research how a short sale would work for your unique situation.
2. Contact Your Bank.
Know the details of your loan, such as, how much you still owe. There is usually a short sale department that can help you understand the documents needed to initiate the short sale process. This process can be time-consuming and require gathering many documents, but will be worth it if you get our of your debt. Many banks would prefer a short sale to a foreclosure. It is more cost effective for them to sell the home than manage a vacant property.
3. Communicate with a Realtor.
A trusted Realtor is a valuable resource to help you navigate the short sale process. They know the values of homes in the area, have qualified buyers (many specifically looking for a short sale home) and could even have a cash buyer that could buy your home quickly. Many hassles are saved by working with a Realtor and letting them move the process along. Commissions to the Realtor are paid by the lender, making this a free service to you as the homeowner.
4. Make the house presentable.
While you will not be able or want to make any investment in renovating or fixing the home, you will still want it to have curb appeal. Tidy up the inside and outside of your home so it looks inviting to a potential buyer.
5. Network with friends and family.
There can be a stigma associated with a foreclosure, but with a short sale you are taking control. Talk to your family and friends for potential interest in buying your home or helping you relocate to a new place more suited to your needs.
While you will not receive money from the short sale of your home, you will benefit from the piece of mind that comes from being in control of your destiny. You will be able to move into a new space that better fits your budget. And if you have kids, there are no worries that you will be kicked out on the street for, not paying your loan. You move out when the short sale closes. Putting your home up for a short sale this year could be just what you need to give your life a fresh, new start.