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Maine Short Sales, REOs, Foreclosures and Distressed Properties

Short Sale: These homes are offered for sale by the owner but because they do not anticipate getting a high enough sale price to pay off their mortgage, the bank that holds the mortgage (the lien holder) must approve of any deal. You will frequently see these advertised as “third party approval required” or “lien holder approval required.”

Q: How could this affect me as a buyer?

A: Short sales can be a great way to get a very good deal, but they can also be tricky in a couple of ways: The seller may not have the funds or resources to correct any issues found during inspections, and the mortgage holder frequently takes anywhere from 1-4 months to RESPOND to an offer to purchase a short sale, resulting in many buyers walking away before they get a response.

Bank-Approved Short Sale: This situation is very similar to the “short sale” above, except that the mortgage-holder has already gone through the lengthy approval process and has come back with a price that they would accept as a short sale.

Q: How could this affect me as a buyer?

A: Bank-approved short sales eliminate the most frustrating part of short sales – waiting for the bank to respond. However, if you want to make an offer for an amount lower than the “bank approved” price, you may have to wait again for the bank to respond, essentially sending the deal back through the short sale approval process.

REO, Bank-owned, or post-foreclosure: These homes have gone through the foreclosure process and are now owned by the mortgage holding bank.

Q: How could this affect me as a buyer?

A: Bank-owned properties are frequently a good deal, but usually have some issues due to neglect or vandalism. Some banks are more flexible about fixing problems prior to closing than others. It is critical to get a home inspection done on a bank owned home prior to purchase.

What if I want to stay in my home? Are there other alternatives?

A: Yes. There are numerous bank programs, including: HARP Phase 1 and HARP Phase 2. Some banks also offer repayment plans or you could always look into refinancing as an option.

Also, there is Making Home Affordable Program (MHA) ® which is a critical part of the Obama Administration’s broad strategy to help homeowners avoid foreclosure, stabilize the country’s housing market, and improve the nation’s economy.

Maybe your expenses have increased due to medical bills or you’re picking up the pieces after a separation or divorce. Maybe you’re trying to get by with less because your hours were cut or your business stumbled. In any case, it’s important to be proactive. MHA ® can help you get real help and real answers right now.