Nothing obliterates fear like information–lots of it. In this section, I’ll do my best to answer questions most frequently asked by current homeowners interested in selling. Knowledge is power and I want my sellers to be the most knowledgeable sellers out there. If you have any questions not covered here, or a general question about real estate, contact Vanessa.

Is this a good time to sell?

The short answer, yes, if you price your home realistically.

The long answer is that there are many variables, the most important being the location of your home, the condition and the asking price. Even thought home inventory is low, buyers are being as selective than ever. Many agents will tell you what you want to hear, but only a great real estate agent will tell you what you need to hear to sell your home.

I own a home and I’m underwater…

It’s okay. It’s nothing to be afraid of tackling. If you’re in this situation, it makes no sense to keep putting good money into a bad investment. You can apply for a loan modification if you want to lower your payments and keep the house or, unload the house by doing a short sale.

There’s no guarantee the lender will approve your loan mod and the process can take some time, cause a good amount of irritation and paper pushing – but, it’s definitely worth trying if you want to stay in your house.

What’s a short sale?

If the lender declined your loan mod request or if you’ve just decided to abandon your sinking ship, you can do a short sale. First, contact an awesome agent with short sale experience. Don’t just contact any agent. There’s an art to pushing through a short sale in a timely manner.

Request a “short sale package” from your lender or lenders if you have a 2nd loan on your property. Fill out everything as quickly as possible, fax AND overnight copies with delivery confirmation to your lender. Your agent will best determine what price to list your property based on the amount you owe. Your agent will also be the main contact with your lender(s) and will negotiate extensively on your behalf to get your offer accepted.

Typically, a well orchestrated short sale averages 45-90 days to complete depending on your lender, the number of liens on the property, your agent’s experience and the buyer’s loan.

Other options?

Aside from a loan mod or short sale, there’s always the option of negotiating a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure with your lender. Though letting it go into foreclosure is an option, it’s one I don’t recommend if you can avoid it. The impact on your credit is significantly harsher than the two other options.