Real Estate Information Archive


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Short Sales - Nothing Short About Them

by Doug & Gwen Campbell at Sun Bay Associates

Short sales.  Yes, the explanation is the bank is "shorting" the debt.  How about the banks looking at shorting the time span, which in many cases borders on eons.

In our area, one brave Realtor, Liane Jamason, sent an email to senior bank executives about a short sale that had been stuck on hold for a year.  It got done.  Her action made the front page of the St. Pete Times today.

Why can the banks' "negotiators" send routine requests to the sellers every 30 days for bank statements, pay slips, etc. and not take the time to look at the information so they can make a decision.  If they are looking at hundreds or thousands of short sales everyday, they can tell quickly that a seller is in dire financial straits or not.  Many banks still refuse to consider a short sale until the homeowner is delinquent on the mortgage.  If a homewoner is foregoing food, medical care, insurance, general lifestyle and still making payments, why cannot a bank accept the facts and review the short sale possiblity?

We cannot ever get the housing industry out of the doldrums until the banks actually take action on short sales to help the millions of families who are barely hanging on, the realtors who can't make a living because it often takes a year to complete a short sale, the contractors can't build new houses or hire people, because there are so many undervalued houses lingering on the market, and on and on.  Then,  the banks stall for months, and after doing a BPO, come back and say they want 30% more than the contract price of the house, which was the market value six or nine months ago.  This kills the deal, the house has to go back on the market and the stupid cycle starts all over again.

Who is going to fix this??  Realtors have invested time and money to gain expertise in short sales, including the Certified Distressed Property Expert designation.  We know how to present a complete short sale package to the banks.  Our sellers know what to expect and gather the requisite documentation.  The buyers are told to expect the process to take months.  Yet the banks continue to drag their feet, "reviewing" the same files over and over and over and over, until the seller is frustrated, the buyers walk away in utter frustration, Realtors lose months of time and energy and the bank loses even more money on the property because no one is capable of making the right decisions to get that bad debt off the books.  All it takes is for someone to do the right thing, is that so hard?

Can someone please offer a solution!?

HAMP or HAFA and Your Mortgage

by Doug & Gwen Campbell at Sun Bay Associates

At last, the federal government is taking real action to provide homeowners assistance with their mortgages.  A new initiative, Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives Program, or HAFA, is now in effect to help homeowners.  The details are complicated, and you, the homeowner, need to clearly understand these new solutions to gain the most benefit.  This is a critical issue, especially for the Tampa Bay real estate market since this market has been so hard hit by the economic downturn.  As a Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE), Sun Bay Associates is in a position to explain the nuances and benefits of the HAFA process.

In March 2009, the Home Affordable Modification Program or HAMP, was introduced to provide homeowners assistance if their mortgage payments exceeded guidelines for income levels (above 31% of income).  Most homeowners, however, are facing such financial hardship that the HAMP can't provide them deep enough discounts on the mortgage and either don't qualify or in the end will default on the modified mortgage anyway.

Enter the HAFA program.  This is specifically designed for homeowners who don't qualify for HAMP aid.  HAFA is supposed to speed up the foreclosure avaoidance options for those homeowners who need this help.  HAFA can help same millions of homeowners from the financial disaster of foreclosure by getting either a short sale or a deed in lieu of foreclosure accomplished relatively quickly.  A short sale is when the home is sold for less than the outstanding mortgage amount and a deed in lieu is when the property is completely turned over to the lender because the homeowner cannot continue making payments.  Then the bank will sell the house to salvage as much of the loan balance as possible.

A critical item in qualifying for the HAFA program is that the loans are NOT owned or guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac and applies only to the first lien mortgage.  HAFA does offer incentives to lenders for those homeowners who have second, third or more mortgages on their homes.  Also, HAFA prevents lending participants from pursuing deficiency judgments against the homeowner after the short sale or deed in lieu has been completed.  If you are in the Tampa Bay area and need to avail yourself of the HAFA program, or are seeking financial help with your mortgage and don't know where to turn, contact us.  We will send you a report that clearly outlines the HAFA process.

With the detailed training and ongoing education as CDPE, we will be able to explain your options.  We can walk you through the various programs available to assist you, whether it is to keep your home by loan modification or going through the short sale or even deed in lieu process as quickly as possible so life can return to normal without the financial stress of a crushing mortgage payment.

Short Sale vs. Foreclosure and the CDPE

by Doug & Gwen Campbell at Sun Bay Associates

Several months ago I talked with a for sale by owner who "needed" to get XX dollars from the sale of a house she owned.  Her price, in today's market was not realistic so she rented it out instead of trying a short sale and avoiding foreclosure.  That was before I became a Certified Distressed Property Expert, or CDPE.  Had I known then what I know now, I could have helped her and possibly gotten her through a short sale with a minimum of heartache.

To shorten a long, sad story, the renter never paid his rent, the house in now in foreclosure, the house has lost another $30,000 to $40,000 value in today's market, she has been advised by her attorney to go into bankruptcy and it may be too late to even try a short sale.  With the knowledge gained from the CDPE training, it is very possible that we could have found a resolution to her issues and sold the house before it got to this point.  I will be following up with her in a couple days to see if we can still help, but she has been pretty well discouraged by the turn of events and the distressed market of today.  In today's market the house is worth about half of what she paid just a few years ago.

If you know anyone who is falling behind on their mortgage, or even before they fall behind and are just upside down or underwater with the mortgage, have them contact a Certified Distressed Property Expert.  I work in the greater Tampa Bay area and can help here.  I also can recommend a CDPE to help someone in any area.  There is no need to suffer the stress of a foreclosure.  A CDPE can provide expert guidance, from loan modification to short sale.  Sometimes a foreclosure is the best option, but a short sale is far better for many reason.  In almost all situations, a short sale is the correct answer when the question is "should I just go into foreclosure or abandon the house?"

Displaying blog entries 1-3 of 3




Contact Information

Photo of Gwen and  Doug Campbell - The Campbell Team Real Estate
Gwen and Doug Campbell - The Campbell Team
at Keller Williams Realty
30522 US Hwy 19N, Suite 107 S
Palm Harbor FL 34684
Doug's Cell 727-741-4189
Gwen's Cell 727-741-7260
Fax: 888-447-7908