Dave Halpern Louisville Short Sale Expert (502) 664-7827

Will lenders consider a short sale when the mortgages are current?

with 2 comments

Curtis Equality Morrison posed an excellent question: As a Realtor, I’m representing a seller of a home with a first mortgage and a second mortgage. While both mortgages are current, the sum of both mortgages exceed the value of the property. Will lenders consider a short-sale when the mortgages are current?

My response:


Thank you for your excellent question.

The short answer is a resounding “yes”.  The lender will consider a short sale even if the borrower is current, the question is what how will that impact the final terms of the short sale.

A very important and early disclosure is warranted here. Short sale Realtors and buyers should never counsel sellers to stop making their payments. That is a decision sellers need to make wholly on their own or upon consultation with a lawyer.

 If the borrower has the financial strength to make the payments, the lender will be more likely to require the borrowers to stay obligated on the shortage.

 If the borrower anticipates being unable to sustain the payments in the future, they should clearly state that in their hardship letter.

I have lost count how many loans and short sales I have negotiated, somewhere over 200 by now. I have never encountered a lender denying a short sale because the loan was still current. This is contrary to blogs and articles that state that lenders won’t consider a short sale unless the borrower is in arrears.

Once you notify the lender that your client has to sell but can’t sell for enough to cover the loan payoff, they will open up a file in their loss mitigation department to evaluate the short sale. After they receive the seller’s financials and hardship letter, they will send an appraiser. The appraiser will report back to the lender his/her opinion of value and the lender will then decide at what price to let the house go rather than drag themselves through a costly full foreclosure.

If the seller’s financials are strong, the lender may release the mortgage from the house and require the borrower to stay obligated on some or all of the shortage.

If the seller’s financials cannot support future payments, the lender will usually forgive the shortage. Some lenders automatically demand the seller to stay obligated on the shortage. If the seller does not have the ability to pay, the Realtor should vigorously appeal the lender’s demand.

Whether the lender requires the borrower to stay obligated or forgives the shortage, both cases are still defined as short sales. The lender may take months to issue their final terms. The Realtor needs to be acutely aware of the final terms, as sometimes they are hidden by the lender with vague language. The sellers need to be given control of the final decision if the short sale terms are acceptable to them.

I am attaching a link to an article that provides a good summary of the considerations regarding staying current on the payments during a short sale negotiation. http://homebuying.about.com/od/shortsale/f/11508_Stop-Pay.htm

Dave Halpern, Broker








Written by davehalpern

January 2, 2010 at 6:28 pm

2 Responses

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  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Short Sale Pros, Dave Halpern. Dave Halpern said: Will lenders consider a short-sale when the mortgages are current?: http://wp.me/pJzwZ-k […]

  2. This is a timely article useful amongst realtors. Dave, your response is excellent. This is a great resource.

    Jeff Green

    January 20, 2010 at 2:01 am

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