Changes in Short Sales Since July 2011

When we last focused on Short Sales at Washington REIA, we talked about how banks were paying 12-20k in assistance to homeowners – if they agreed to go through a short sale.

What a difference just a few months makes.

There was a recent article in Business Week reporting how some homeowners were receiving as much as $35,000 to agree to a short sale.

You can find the full article here.

PDA and smartphones will find the article at

Short sales have become a fashionable buzzword lately in the investor community, and perhaps in the larger public as well.This is due in large part to the fact that almost 10% of the recent sales across the country are – short sales.  To put that in perspective, in 2008, closer to the beginning of this housing mess, short sales were about 2% of the total sales.We are working with some homeowners right now, who are selling their home through a short sale on their personal residence.  Their last regular mortgage payment was in 2006.

These lenders have started to realize that it can take a few year to take a home through foreclosure, and rack up legal expenses as high as 60k or more, or they can pay the homeowner HALF that amount now, and get the property back in relatively decent condition.

Why are banks willing to pay out that amount as an incentive?

Well, why are the banks agreeing to their 25 Billion dollar mortgage servicing settlement?

In both cases – by working with the homeowners, the lenders are reducing their liability on possible fraudulent or criminal activity.

The lenders realize that if they have to answer to a judge or jury for the things that they have been doing with these mortgages over the last few years, they might not look so good.

Some homeowners are fed up with what they view as injustices by their lenders.  Some people are fighting back and starting to win their cases.

Join us this month at our Washington REIA meeting as we invite attorneys from a local law firm to visit with us and discuss some of the foreclosure defense strategies they are using to assist homeowners in this struggle.

You might be very surprised at some of the updates from the “front lines” of the legal community.
Short sales and the issue of foreclosure is still a tricky area for investors.  We will be spending an entire evening discussing these hot topics at our Feb. 27th WREIA meeting.

And as always, let me know if I can help with your real estate investing here in the DC area.

See you on Feb. 27th!

John Peterson

Washington REIA Network, President
Profitable Property, Founder
Find video updates on the Profitable Property Channel at


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