August 25, 2010

The beginnings of a (long) short sale

our townhouse in happier times

Well, the day has finally come. Ever since Josh and I bought our lovely ranch back in February, we knew we would have to deal with our first home, a wonderfully outdated, under-value townhouse. My relationship with this townhouse was not always so negative. In fact, when Josh and I purchased the townhouse back in 2007, we were in love with it. It was our first house, we were getting married in a month, we would be there for 2-3 years, make some great memories, and move on. Over the three years, the townhouse was good to us; we did indeed make a lot of happy memories there, including that fateful day in July of 2009 when we found out we were pregnant. Suddenly, that lovely townhouse was too old, too in a bad location and above all, too small for our expanding brood. We started looking for houses, and while there were plenty that made our 1200 square foot, outdated townhouse look adequate, there was a lovely property that we fell in love with. Our townhouse would simply no longer do, and while we went ahead with putting an offer in on our "family home," the reality sunk in that the townhouse was going to cost us a lot of money. Nevertheless, we proceeded. We put the townhouse up for sale, knowing full well that while we could technically swallow the $30,000+ we were about to lose on the place, but we didn't want to. We priced it high, hoping to get as high of an offer as possible, but the opposite happened: we didn't get a single offer.

Fast forward 8 months: the townhouse is now the bane of our existence. We have called the bank on multiple occasions, only to be told that we hadn't missed a payment and therefore there wasn't much that could be done. So guess what we did? We missed a payment, and duh duh duh duhhhh....all of a sudden people will talk to us. Now we can do a short sale, we can list it low, the bank will have to approve it, amazing. Having bought this house through a short sale, we are very aware taht a short sale is actually a very long process, so the end of our relationship is certainly not imminent, but for the first time, it feels like a plausible solution is in front of us.

Who knew missing a payment was the key to financial success (or progress anyhow)? Anyone know anything about short sales and what we should expect? Advice is greatly appreciated as embark on this journey that is sure to be anything but short...

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