Can You Stay In The House During A Short Sale?

Can you stay in the house while a short sale is being worked out with your lender?

Yes! Actually, your lender usually prefers you stay in the house, even if you are not paying the mortgage.

Why Does The Lender Want You Stay?

If you stay in the house, you are protecting the house, which means you are protecting the lender’s investment.

Here’s how you help the lender by staying in the house:

  • You are keeping the heat on, thereby protecting the house from freezing pipes and water damage.
  • You are keeping the house ventilated, thereby reducing risk of mold.
  • By occupying the house you are reducing the risk of vandalism.
  • By keeping the lawn mowed you are keeping the county inspectors from attaching penalties against the house that eventually your lender may have to pay.
  • You are maintaining the house as a home, rather than leaving it as an abandoned property.

All your simple actions of staying in the house help protect the lender from additional losses. Some lenders stipulate that you MUST stay in the house to qualify for the short sale.

Sounds Unlikely The Lender Will Want You To Stay In The House?

One easy way to find out is to call your lender and ask. You must get transferred out of the collections department to a department that is set up to help you avoid foreclosure. These departments have a variety of names;  Home Retention Dept., Foreclosure Workout Dept., Short Sale Dept., or Loss Mitigation Dept.

Ask them the same question: Can I stay in the house during the short sale, even if I’m not making mortgage payments?

You may be pleasantly surprised by their answer.

You should also confirm your decision with an attorney.

By Dave Halpern

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One thought on “Can You Stay In The House During A Short Sale?”

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