The federal government’s Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives (HAFA) Program is set to expire December 30, 2016. The program pays homeowners $10,000 to complete a short sale rather than go through the foreclosure process.
Since the application deadline for HAFA is only a few months away, it is important for homeowners to apply as soon as possible. A real estate professional who specializes in short sales can help you find out if you qualify for HAFA.
Here are some of the benefits of the HAFA program:
- The HAFA incentive is $10,000 cash.
- The money can be used however the seller sees fit.
- The program applies not only to primary residences, but also to second homes, vacant properties, and rental properties.
- Once you complete a HAFA short sale, there is a waiver of deficiency, meaning you are released from paying any remaining mortgage debt.
For people with underwater mortgages who need to sell their home, HAFA is a great opportunity to get a much-needed infusion of cash. You can get more details about the HAFA program here.
Do you qualify for a short sale?
HAFA is only available to homeowners who do a short sale. Although every situation is unique, the basic criteria for qualifying for a short sale are:
- You need to sell your home.
- You owe more on your mortgage than your home is worth.
- You have a personal financial hardship that will prevent you from making future payments. (Examples of hardship include loss of job, divorce, death of a spouse and medical emergency or illness.)
It is critical that homeowners considering a short sale meet with a professional to review their options and discuss the potential legal and tax implications.
Richard Eastern is a Windermere broker in Bellevue, WA and co-founder of Washington Property Solutions, a short sales negotiating company. Since 2003 he has helped more than 1300 homeowners sell their homes. You can learn more about Richard here or at www.washortsales.com.