If you bought your home several years ago when the Real Estate market was booming and financed it with a mortgage, and then possible took out a 2nd mortgage or a home equity loan, you may be one of thousands of homeowners who are “under-water”. This means that the amount that you owe the bank on your loan(s) exceeds the current value of your home. If you are unable to afford to make your monthly mortgage payments and wish to sell your home, you may be a candidate for a “short sale”
A “short sale” is a sale wherein the lender allows you to sell your home for its current market value, even though that value is less than the sum owed on your loan. The bank agrees to accept a short payoff of the loan amount subject to certain conditions. To qualify for a “short sale” you must first prove to the bank that due to a financial hardship you are unable to remain current on your loan. You must provide supporting documentation detailing the hardship, and the bank will thoroughly investigate the accuracy of your claim. Examples of financial hardship include the following:
1. Income has been reduced or lost totally due to loss of employment or business failure
2. Household circumstances have changed – (Divorce or separation, illness of principal borrower, death of family member, permanent or short term disability, need to care for ill family member)
3. Mortgage payments have increased
4. Other Expenses have increased (high medical expenses)
5. Distant employment transfer
If one of the above situations describes you, it may be time for you to contact a qualified real estate broker to assist you in marketing your home and locating a qualified buyer. Once an agreement has been reached, your lender will be contacted, and the lender will indicate the documentation it requires to consider approving the Short Sale. If it does, the lender will permit your closing costs, such as the brokerage commissions, legal fees and transfer fees to be paid from the proceeds of the sale, and the balance will be paid to the lender in satisfaction of your loan.
You can always do some preliminary research on line to discover the documentation your particular lender requires to assist it in determining if it will approve your short sale. Typically, most lenders will request that they receive the following supporting documents:
A. Two (2) months of your most recent pay stubs
B. Two (2) months of your most recent bank statements
C. Most recent two (2) years tax returns, including W-2s
D. Hardship letter describing your financial condition
E. Copy of fully executed contract of sale.
F. Broker’s Commission agreements
The attorney at Pearlman, Apat, Futterman, Sirotkin & Seinfeld, LLP have successfully handled many short sales and are very happy to assist you in this process. Please feel free to contact either Lynn Sirotkin, Esq. ([email protected]) or Veronica A. Fuentes, Esq. ([email protected]) if you require any assistance in this area.