Short Sales – Distressed Homeowners Deserve Help

Short Sales - Distressed Homeowners Need HelpDoug and Lorena Foster’s blog titled, “When The Wolf is Running The Hen House” struck a nerve with me.

“They are over and done with…” Despite their thoughts, Short Sales are going to be around at least through the end of 2012 when The Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act expires.  If you need some background on the subject read my blog titled, “Short Sales 101 – Introduction.”

“Is this our new job? We don’t think so!”  Short Sale listing agents are doing two and three times the work per closing but the end result is so satisfying.  When I first meet with distressed homeowners and they realize there is a light at the end of the tunnel, it’s like the weight of the world is lifted off their shoulders.  If this is my role for the next few years, I can live with it.

“Ultimately 9 out of 10 fail.”  Trained and experienced Short Sale agents close 9 out of 10.  The bigger problem is so many agents don’t have a clue how to list and close Short Sales and should not be attempting to provide services they are clearly not qualified to provide.  Not on do they do a great disservice to their clients but they harm the profession and violate the Code of Ethics (for REALTORS®).  

We’ve closed Short Sales in as little as 64 days from listing to funding.  Do they all go that smooth? No, they do not.  There are so many variables that can impact the timeline. 

We’ve had buyers tie up a home in a contract while they looked for another property. We had a buyer enter into a contract and fail to disclose they had a home to sell.  They were betting on months to get the short sale approved.  I’ll bet both the agent and the buyers were choking when we had the sale approved in 22 days!  Both terminated their contracts after we gave them notice the sale had been approved and left us to start the process again. 

I’ve sold some properties four times to find a buyer who could close.  I’m to the point that I interview every selling agent who brings me a contract. Do they understand the process?  Have they prepared their clients for it as well?

We encourage homeowners across the United States to get educated on the options available should they become financially distressed. Short Sales are a great tool, providing relief to all parties.

Just remember to choose a REALTOR® with a proven Short Sale track record to negotiate on your behalf. Making the right choice can mean the world of difference to your financial future.

About Tom Branch

Tom Branch has written 597 posts in this blog.


Have you ever just met someone, but felt you like you'd known him for years? That's what most people experience with Tom. He has a knack for making folks feel right at home. After 21 years in the Air Force, loyalty and honesty are the foundation of everything Tom does. In addition to being a Texas Real Estate Broker, Tom is a Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE) and a Short Sales & Foreclosure Resource (SFR).

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