How Much Does a Short Sale Cost?

Today's question is, how much does a short sale cost?

Now, when I'm referring to cost, I don't mean cost purely in terms of dollars and cents. I mean in terms of time, opportunity costs, emotional toll, the cost to your overall well-being. We're going to discuss four main points related to the cost of doing a short sale.

1. Time.

Let's say you take on the burden of attempting to negotiate the short sale on your own. In that case, you may be wasting your time, spinning your wheels, not knowing the proper parties to talk to, not knowing the appropriate channels of communication or the appropriate avenues to take to bring about the desired outcome. You could be wasting time, very precious time, especially in light of a pending foreclosure sale date.

In the alternative, let's say you were talking to somebody at work or a friend of yours and they say they know a guy who knows a guy who does this type of thing, right, who does mortgage debt settlement. In that instance, you're putting your faith and your trust into someone who may or may not be a true certified distressed property expert and who may not know what they're doing, in which case you're also wasting precious time. And at the end of the day, you may not realize the results that you were expecting or the beneficial outcome that you were anticipating, so you've lost precious time.

2. Real Estate Agents. 

If you find yourself in a position where you're in default on your mortgage, chances are you're going to be approached by a number of real estate agents, who are claiming to be in a position to help you sell your property short at no additional cost to you. Well, of course, there's no additional cost to you because the listing agents are being paid out of the commission already. So they actually can't charge you an additional fee for negotiating your short sale, not to mention the fact that listing agents aren't experienced short sale negotiators. Listing agents do what they do, and that's sell property. However, they really don't have any formal training, as far as negotiating debt with these financial lending institutions. So be mindful of that when the listing agents start coming out of the woodwork offering to help you sell your home short.

3. Bankruptcy Attorneys.

Bankruptcy attorneys serve a very important purpose, and that's helping folks discharge their debt when needed. However, bankruptcy attorneys work with a somewhat limited toolbox. So if they've got a hammer in their toolbox, everything looks like a nail. You don't always need to declare bankruptcy to settle your mortgage debt. Oftentimes, you can reach full settlement with your mortgage lender within the context of a short sale transaction without having to take the "scorch the earth" approach of declaring a bankruptcy.

4. Consumer Debt Advocates. 

Here at Ark Law Group, we help you explore a wide array of options that might be available to you with respect to settling your mortgage debt. We don't take the "one size fits all" approach. We will sit down with you, go over your situation, and tailor a course of action suited to your particular needs. If a short sale happens to be appropriate for you, then we're a buyer-paid service. 

We understand that homeowners, oftentimes, are not in a position to pay attorneys' fees. So what we've done is we've shifted the burden of cost to the party that's in the best position to pay, and that's the party that's coming to the table with money. Well, that's the buyer, right?

So when you're thinking about choosing a negotiator to help you sell your property short, you want to think about the four points that we discussed today.

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