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The Buyer’s Experience: An Atypical Short Sale

  • June 9, 2011

by Mark Wellborn

In a new feature debuting today on UrbanTurf, home buyers and sellers tell the good, the bad, the ugly and the weird associated with their home buying or selling experience. In the first installment, 25 year-old Izzat Ansari dispells the notion that all short sale transactions lead to headaches.

The Buyer's Experience: An Atypical Short Sale: Figure 1
The Aurora

Despite the problems that I had heard are associated with the short sale buying process, my transaction went pretty smoothly.

On May 19th, I went under contract on a two-bedroom, two-bath, 1,025 square-foot condo in The Aurora in Silver Spring. The listing price was $250,000 and the accepted offer was $249,990 with the seller paying three percent toward closing costs. That breaks out to about $244 a square foot, whereas the average in downtown Silver Spring was $277.

My budget was $250,000 and there wasn’t much inventory in the area at this price point that excited me. I work in Bethesda, so I wanted something that was close and Silver Spring made sense. Given my modest budget, I wanted to focus on distressed properties, and my real estate agent advised me that dealing with a foreclosure was easier than dealing with a short sale.

(With a foreclosure, the buyer negotiates with the bank directly; with a short sale, you negotiate a price with the previous owner and then that price has to be approved by the bank.)

In my situation, the bank and the seller had agreed on a price of $250,000 for the unit. My offer (see above) was accepted by the seller within three days of it being submitted, but my agent told me that it often takes months for a bank to review a short sale, and in the case of my condo, two liens needed to be approved by the bank.

To my surprise, they approved the first lien on the condo within about three weeks. There was a second lien on the condo and that took about another ten days to get accepted. All in all, it took about a month for the sale to be approved, a relatively quick transaction period by short-sale standards.

The property was sold “as is” and there were some problems that were found during the home inspection (e.g. the microwave needed to be replaced, the A/C unit needs to be serviced and might have a leak). I was hoping that since the building is only six years old there wouldn’t be any problems, but I guess that was wishful thinking.

While I know all short sale experiences are not this smooth, I’d absolutely go through the process again. If buyers have some patience, they can get a pretty good deal.

If you have a good, bad, crazy or weird buying or selling experience that you deem worthy of sharing with the UT audience, send an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

See other articles related to: the buyer's experience, silver spring, short sales

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/the_buyers_experience_an_atypical_short_sale/3624

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