The short sale process is still a mystery to many people, even after all these years. Lots of buyer's agents are confused; puzzled buyers are looking for direction, and not every short sale listing agent knows how to do a short sale.
The Basics of a Short Sale
Banks grant short sales for 2 reasons: the seller has a hardship, and the seller owes more on the mortgage than the home is worth.
A few examples of a hardship are:
The seller will need to prepare a financial package for submission to the short sale bank. Each bank has its own guidelines but -- with the exception of Wachovia, which is the best short sale bank in the world -- the basic procedure is similar from bank to bank.
The seller's short sale package will most likely consist of:
- Letter of authorization, which lets your agent speak to the bank
- D-1 or preliminary net sheet
- Completed financial statement
- Seller's hardship letter
- 2 years of tax returns
- 2 years of W-2s Recent payroll stubs
- Last 2 months of bank statements
- Comparative market analysis or list of recent comparable sales Writing
- The Short Sale Offer
- Submit to the Bank
Before a buyer writes a short sale offer, a buyer should ask his or her agent for a list of comparable sales. Banks are not in the business of giving away a home at rock-bottom pricing. The bank will want to receive somewhat close to market value. The short sale price may have little bearing on market value and may, in fact, be priced below the comparable sales to encourage multiple offers.