When a homeowner is no longer able to make the payments on the loan for his/her home and therefore sells it, but what they net from the sale of the home is not enough to pay off that loan. This situation is called a Short Sale, and because the price the home sells for does not cover the amount still owed, the lender can approve or disapprove the sale. In other words the lender gets to decide how much money it is going to lose as a result of the sale. A Short Sale can take a long time to get from contract signing to settlement, sometimes many months, and both purchasers and sellers need to be patient. After the sale, the lender may still seek recovery of the balance of the loan from the now former owner. In any event, the former owner’s credit record will be affected adversely.
Why is this of interest to the real estate investor? Short Sale prices can be low and therefore offer a good deal.
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