Home Values Plummet $2 Trillion in 2008: 50% of Loan Modifications Result in Default, Homeowners Turning to Short Sales to Avoid Foreclosure

February 04, 2009 (PRLEAP.COM) Business News
National Short Sale Center, the largest short sale company in the nation, today announced that Short Sales for 2008 hit an all-time high in Arizona, Nevada, California and Florida. The trend toward distressed property sales is evident across the nation; tens of thousands of homeowners who bought at the top of the market or put little to no money down now owe more on their homes than they are worth.

With a rising number of adjustable-rate mortgages on the verge of resetting, continued economic instability and plummeting housing values, the Federal Reserve predicts that new foreclosures will reach about 2.25 million the next twelve months.

In 2008, distressed property sales (Foreclosures and Short Sales) comprised 40% of U.S. home sales. A Short Sale occurs when a lender agrees to accept less than is owed on a home loan. Since 2004, National Short Sale Center has been helping homeowners sell their property and avoid a foreclosure. The Scottsdale-based company is receiving more than 3,000 calls per month from homeowners looking to avoid foreclosure.

"We'll continue to see more foreclosures in 2009 if homeowners don't educate themselves about their options to foreclosure, such as doing a short sale," said Travis Hamel Olsen, president of National Short Sale Center. "Short sales give homeowners a way to avoid foreclosure that can help save their credit from serious damage."

In response to the mortgage meltdown, the government has been stepping in, but federal loan modification programs don't appear to be working. More than half of homeowners whose loans were modified to avoid foreclosure fell delinquent within six months. To date, more than 78,000 Americans have had their homes repossessed. As a result, Short Sales are becoming more common as lenders and mortgage servicers open up their own Short Sale departments to help ease the enormous increase in requests.

"Homeowners need to know their options," continued Olsen. "They don't have to just let the home go back to the bank. There is a way to escape foreclosure."

National Short Sale Center acts as a neutral third party between homeowners and mortgage servicers to arrange short sales. The nation's largest and longest-established short sale company streamlines the short sales process by negotiating between real estate agents and lenders and handling all of the necessary paperwork.

About National Short Sale Center:
Founded in 2004, Scottsdale-based National Short Sale Center, Inc. assists Homeowners, Real Estate Agents and Lenders on a nationwide basis in short-selling properties for maximum value, creating a win-win situation for all parties. The homeowner is provided an option before their property is foreclosed upon, maximum yield is achieved for the mortgage servicer and the listing agent establishes a better position in the Short Sale real estate market when each Short Sale is successfully closed.

Except for the historical information contained herein, this news release contains forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties, including change in economic conditions of the various markets the Company serves.

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