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Many of the homes for sale today – as many as half in some markets – fall under the category of “distressed properties.”

These are homes that have either gone through foreclosure or are being marketed as “short sales.” In a short sale, the homeowner can’t afford to maintain the mortgage, but the lender – rather than foreclosing – agrees to the sale of the property for less than the balance of the loan.

These types of sales have different dynamics than traditional sales – with more paperwork, often a longer transaction process and, in some cases, more frustration. For these reasons, many buyers shy away from foreclosures or short sales.

However, if you understand the potential pitfalls of purchasing a distressed property – and work with an agent who has a thorough knowledge of this market – you can get a great home at a great price.

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