Are you getting the short sale incentives you should?

When you apply for a short sale, you have to submit a LOT of paperwork.  It’s a time-consuming process.  And if you fail to respond to the bank quickly, well, they just close out your file and you get the privilege of applying all over again.  It’s not a fun road, but it’s traveled all too often these days. 

If they’re going to put you through all that, make sure at the end you get what you deserve!  There are a number of incentives out there to encourage short sales.  For example:

1.  If you are a seller who qualifies for a short sale under the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives program (HAFA), you could receive up to $3,000 in relocation costs.

2.  Larger banks are offering their own incentives to sellers.  Bank of America, Chase and Citibank often offer some relocation assistance as well, even if the loan does not qualify under HAFA.

3.  If you qualify under HAFA, the bank is required to respond within 30 days after they receive your offer, and render a decision within 60 days (assuming, of course, that the required paperwork is turned in).  In theory this is a great benefit to sellers, making their homes competitive with the homes of people who are not in a short sale situation.  In other words, potential buyers who need to move quickly may be willing to consider a short sale if they know they will have a decision in 60 days.  In practice, however, I have not seen banks meet these deadlines with any regularity.

HAFA also offers $1500 to the servicer bank if the short sale gets done, and up to $8,500 to secondary lienholders. 

If you are involved in a short sale, make sure you get what you deserve!