Short Sale or Foreclosure, What Should “I” Do?


TV, newspaper, internet wherever you turn you are hearing about this topic everywhere.  Those facing a short sale or foreclosure know it can be very stressful and often wonder where to turn.  I am here to tell you that “YES” it can be stressful, but once you have spoken with a qualified person that can give you direction, answer your questions and help you to make those first steps, this stressful feeling will subside and you will wonder why you waited so long to ask the question.  What most people don’t know right now, if you were to start asking around, you would be surprised at how many people are in the same situation you are in.  Why are we so afraid to talk with each other about our difficulties…remember when the teacher always said to us, the only stupid question is the one that was not asked?  Shouldn’t that apply in this situation also?

The worst thing you could have to tell your spouse or partner is that you may be on the verge of loosing your home.  Now what, how long will the process take, where do we go from here & most impotantly…where will we live & how long with this affect our credit scores.  These are more than just scary thought.  Depending on the action you have to take; short sale vs. foreclosure both will impact your credit scores but in two very different ways.

Short Sale: May stay on your record for 3-4 years.  How it affects your credit score is based on each situation individually as each of our credit scores are different to begin with.  After the appropriate number of years, you may see this come off your credit report.  If you have a second mortgage, this lender has up to 7 years to come after you for the deficient amount owed on that loan even once the home is sold.

Foreclosure: This will stay on your credit report FOREVER! It may affect the terms of any loan or credit card you try to obtain in the future. 

Neither of these procedures should be taken lightly, however, working with a qualified real estate agent will help guide you through the process and be able to direct you to the correct persons that you may need to speak with in order to make the correct decision for you.  When speaking with a Real Estate agent about how you should proceed, it is important to know that this person can not ethically give you any legal or financial advise on the decision you might need to make.  It is always in your best interest to speak with the appropriate persons for direction in these matters.  Your Real Estate agent should also not pressure you to make any impulse decisions on what you want to do.  Since this decision is going to affect you for many years if not a lifetime, take the time to make the decisions that feel best for you, your spouse and most definitely your family.

The other thing to remember is each situation is different and how the bank works with your agent will be different in each case.  So if you see an agent promoting themselves as an experienced or expert in either of these situations, remember that these designations are self-proclaimed and there is NO government or agency that gives these titles to an agent.

THE SPIRITS TO MOVE are here to assist you in all your real estate needs & questions.  Leave us a question if you have one and we will get back with a private response to you.  We are here to help move you in a professional & confidential manner.

Shopping and Homes…How are they related?


If you had your TV on lately, you have heard over and over again the reports saying that the holiday sales have increased compared to last year.  Is this really true or are they just hyping the public to get the shoppers to open their wallets?

Home sales are still on a slow decline in price and most people who I have talked with over the holidays or even now say that they have cut their holiday and daily spending way down.  Their fear is that the housing market is not recovering like experts predicted, unemployment seems to still be at an all time high, and gas prices have increased through the roof over that past month.  In Minnesota, some places are charging over $3/gal.

So how does all this related to the shopping malls? 

I can say personally that I have been out shopping lately before the holidays and just here recently and people seem not to be carrying the load of packages that I typically have seen over years past.  Are they buying more expensive smaller gifts or has the gift card finally taken over?  Here is what I have heard from some:
“I get money from my family, so there is no shopping required & I get more when I shop after the holidays as the sales happen then”
“It’s just me & my spouse so we just buy something big like a new TV or car for both of us and don’t exchange individual gifts”
“I do all my ordering online as there seems to be more deals via the internet”                                                                                                  

How does this relate to the housing market?

Home sales have struggled since the tax credit for buyers expired.  There is much data to show that people are not secure enough with the economy the way it stands today to purchase a new or existing home.  As mentioned earlier with unemployment at an all time high, talk of yet MORE foreclosures to hit the market, mortgage regulations changing & requiring a buyer now to provide some sort of down payment sales have declined.  With the decline of sales, comes the decline of prices to get the homes that are on the market sold.  Most sellers on the market now are at their bottom line for an asking price.  So indication shows that if people are not in the malls they are not looking at homes either.

Standards & Poor have just reported that homes sales in the major cities have dropped dramatically and expect to see home sales continue to fall through next year. 

How does this impact me if I want to sell my home?

Make sure it sparkles inside and out.  Think of it as if you were going out shopping.  There are two stores side by side and both carry what you are looking for.  However, the one on the right is dark, dingier and you have heard others say they are way over priced for their goods! What about that one on the left? Well, let’s look at it, when you walk into this shop there is someone there to great you, its bright & you feel the warmth when you walk in the door, everything here sparkles & shines and the prices are incredibly appropriate for the items they are selling.  Which one of these shops would you buy from or tell others about?  This is the way you need to think in a market like we are facing in order to sell your home.

Make it sparkle, warm & welcoming and price it accordingly.  This is not the market to be playing the start high and work my way to a sale.  THE SPIRITS TO MOVE hit people at some crazy times so be sure your home is ready when that mood hits.