What To Expect in a Short Sale Listed by Elizabeth Weintraub 

All offers are sent to the seller upon receipt. If the seller likes your offer, it will be accepted. We accept and submit only one offer to the bank. Status is changed to either Pending Short Lender Approval or Active Short Contingent. We do accept back-up offers.

The seller is looking for a committed and qualified buyer who will wait for short sale approval and offer a price the bank will accept.

The seller might ask the buyer’s agent to promise that the agent will not write any more offers for a buyer after the seller accepts the buyer’s offer.

The seller might give the buyer’s agent an opportunity to either redraw the contract or to wait for a counter offer if the contract does not meet standard expectations.


All short sales are sold in AS IS condition. Most banks will not authorize payment of a pest report, home warranty or repairs. If a buyer asks for a pest report, for example, the buyer might be required to pay for a pest completion, if any work is discovered, because the short sale bank will not usually pay for repairs.

The buyer’s earnest money deposit will be released to escrow upon seller acceptance, just like any other real estate transaction. Section 3ii on the short sale addendum will authorize release.

A few short sales will get approved in 45 days but the norm is 60 to 90 days. We prefer to see that a buyer is willing to wait 90 days in Section 1A of the short sale addendum.


All initial paperwork, unless otherwise noted in short sale offer status tab, is submitted to the bank(s) within 24 hours of the date we receive the accepted offer during a business work week.

The bank will complete a BPO (broker price opinion).

The bank will issue a verbal or written counter offer authorizing payment of fees and might adjust the sales price up or down. If the bank has delegated authority, typically the approval letter will be issued within 10 business days. If not, the file will be sent to the investor for final approval.

Updates posted to daily. See public accessible short sale updates.


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