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Video: Why do short sales take so long?

Kristin Arnold

Intro: A short sale can be anything but short. Sure, you can score a great deal on a property but you gotta put in lots of time, effort and patience.

Take VO: For owners who can no longer afford their mortgages, there's an alternative to bankruptcy or foreclosure, in the form of a short sale.

TAKE SOT: Amy Simmonds: (the bank agrees to discount the loan balance for a seller who owes more on his mortgage than the home is currently worth.)

Continue VO: Unlike a home in foreclosure, most short sale homes still have the owner living in the property ... which usually means the property is being properly maintained and not run-down. While buyers can land a home at a bargain price ... a short sale property can take a long time - driving some homebuyers away.

Take SOT: Amy Simmonds talking about how long a short sale can take.

Continue VO: There are other caveats for both the buyer and seller of a short sale. A buyer, but most importantly a seller should seek out a real estate agent with real experience in short sales ... not someone who has just taken a class and gotten certified. You want to know how many short sales your agent has closed. Experienced agents will coordinate the transaction with the bank and prepare you for the process, but they can't tell you the legalities of a short sale and the consequences they may come with.

Take SOT: (A big consequence for the seller is the risk of the lender trying to collect on the balance of the loan. Several states allow the lender to seek the balance once a short sale or foreclosure is completed.)

Tag: As both a buyer and seller of a short sale ... there can be countless reasons why it can take a long time. This might be a good time to micromanage the process by keeping excellent notes about when you sent documents, who you sent them to and make follow-up phone calls until the deal closes. All parties involved need to go into a short sale with realistic expectations ... knowing there will be hiccups along the way. To learn more on buying and selling a short sale ... visit Bankrate.com. I'm Kristin Arnold.

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