Why I help Kansas City homeowners negotiate Short Sales--and how they could go better...

I have heard it said that FEAR is the great motivator.

My experience has been that fear can cause homeowners to become professional AVOIDERS. Dodge the phone, leave the mail unopened, don't answer the door. And, I totally understand that fear and motivation to stick your head in the sand. I have been in financial trouble, and even faced foreclosure. When my daughter was born and needed a lengthy ICU stay, I thought it would bankrupt my family. We had massive medical debt and no income while we cared for her. I was terrified. For a while, I even avoided.

What I learned through that experience is that knowledge is power. Taking some control and using the tools available to you in a crises can change the course of your fate. It can also help you fight the demons of depression and guilt. I believe it down to my core. I've seen it work.

Since that time, I have helped people avoid foreclosure.

IT'S THE PERFECT MARRIAGE OF MY 11 YEARS EXPERIENCE AND A HEART FOR PEOPLE WHOSE LIVES HAVE TAKEN A DETOUR!

There are several options available to homeowners when you have faced the 4 D'S (as I call them):

Death
Divorce
Disability (medical or otherwise)
Dumb Boss (loss of job)

If you are behind on your mortgage, or can see that you will be, there are tools and laws in your favor. Don't face foreclosure on your own. Don't bury your head in the sand. I can show you at least two options that are better than being evicted. My services are paid for by the bank, and it's my job to help you eliminate some of the debt that can rob you of your joy for life. In fact, 1/2 of Kansas City homeowners can even sell AFTER foreclosure, frequently taking some equity with them, since Kansas is a Redemption state.

How can Short Sales be made easier?

(1) Each lender should have a team whose job it is to review the Short Sale packages as they arrive, and send ONE fax which shows any missing items within 72 hours of receipt. The homeowner would then have 48 hours to rectify the missing item(s). If you doddle, you have to resubmit.
(2) Acceptance into a short sale program should HALT THE FORECLOSURE PROCESS for 90 days, minimum, while the home is aggressively marketed.
(3) An appraisal (or series of interior BPO's) should be ordered at the outset, establishing fair market value upfront, and allowing the marketing to be done at a price which will actually get accepted by the bank.
(4) Time from accepted contract to closing should be no more than 45 days. This allows normal retail buyers to be included in the sales--rather than going on to the next house--and giving investors an upper hand.
(5) Banks must commit to paying a fair and reasonable commission. Otherwise, agents have very little motivation to invest 80--200 hours in a single transaction.
(6) Banks and agents should SHARE a weekly e-mail update, showing what progress has been made and any changes in the status.
(7) Agents should receive intensive training in Short Sales before attempting to take on the system.
(8) Homeowners and agents involved in Short Sales should invest in Yoga, Bible Study or Hypnosis for relaxation and patience. Even a Smash Room!

THE FHA PRE-FORECLOSURE PROCESS WORKS GREAT AND FOLLOWS MANY OF THESE GUIDELINES!!

Some banks have already initiated programs like this, knowing that Short Sales are going to be around for awhile. Contact me if you have questions.

Don't give up or avoid. Fight!

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Comment by Petra Norris on January 14, 2010 at 6:39am
Congratulations Stephanie! Knowledge is Power and thank you for sharing your knowledge and personal experience.
Comment by Lamanda Jones on January 12, 2010 at 12:46pm
Wow! Could not have broken it down any better.
Comment by Katerina Gasset on January 11, 2010 at 2:19pm
Congratulations Stephanie! Thank you for adding value and sharing.
Comment by Wendy Rulnick on January 11, 2010 at 2:10pm
Stephanie - BIG CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR FIRST PLACE WINNER in the Short Sale Blogging Contest! Your no-nonsense, confident approach and advice will give homeowners HOPE! Thank you for sharing your knowledge and winning attitude! And thank you for being part of the team on www.ShortSaleSuperstars.com !

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