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New short sale rules expand options for South Carolina families

As the real estate market, both in Charleston and nationally, is making a slow recovery, federal housing officials have made one thing clear: Distressed homeowners may benefit from a short sale.

In addition to changes to the short sale process announced earlier this year, the Federal Housing Finance Agency recently announced additional changes to short sale rules. When these particular changes go into effect on Nov. 1, mortgage lenders will no longer have to gain final approval from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to proceed with a short sale.

In the past, the process was quite lengthy, as homeowners were required to reach out to several agencies to move forward with a short sale. In the process, they would have to compile an extensive amount of financial data. However, the new process seeks to cut out some of the steps in order to streamline approval.

In addition to shortening the amount of time it takes to receive approval for a short sale, South Carolina military families will also benefit from this change. Oftentimes, military families are asked to move to another state at a moment's notice, so they could run into trouble if they have an underwater home mortgage. For military personnel who are transferred or deployed, they will receive automatic short sale approval if their home is currently worth less than what they owe on their home loan.

It's a relief to know that public officials are finally realizing how tough it is to be stuck with an underwater home or face foreclosure. The reality is that it many homeowners simply cannot wait until the value of their home improves markedly. Short sales allow individuals to sell their home at the current market value without being dealt many of the negative financial consequences associated with foreclosure.

Charleston-area homeowners who are dealing with an upside-down mortgage may wish to explore all of their options, including a short sale, to improve their financial situation. By seeking out the right advice, homeowners can alleviate the burden of an outstanding mortgage and lagging housing market.


  • Our firm has experience helping distressed South Carolina homeowners. For more information about alternatives to foreclosure, please see our Charleston short sales page.

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