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Truth About Short Sales

by John Riggins

Kapolei Real Estate: The Truth About Short Sales

July 7th, 2009 John Riggins Posted in KAPOLEI REAL ESTATE NEWS, Kapolei real estate, oahu, short sales 1 Comment »

Across the country real estate is changing and Kapolei is no exception.  Short Sales have a stigma of being impossible to get completed and approved, yet in actuality nothing could be further from the truth.  Short Sales offer the seller an opportunity to get out of an upside down mortgage as well as the buyer an opportunity to buy a home at a lower price.  The most important thing to remember when looking at Short Sales on Oahu is to use a CDPE (certified Distressed Property Expert).  John Riggins is one of only 4 CDPEs in Hawaii and can help a difficult process move along as smoothly as possible.  These are the most common Short Sale Myths:

1.    Short Sales are Impossible and Never Get Approved
Nothing could be further from the truth!

Are short sales more difficult? Yes.
Do you need to learn a new process? Yes.
Are they impossible? No, No, No!
John Riggins, who has presented you with this report, is a Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE) who has undergone extensive training in helping homeowners in distress and processing short sales. The CDPE membership organization nationally is made up of agents who receive thousands of short sale approvals on a monthly basis – don’t think for one minute this is an impossible process. While there are no guarantees in any transaction, more and more short sales are being approved monthly.

2.  Banks are Not Accepting Short Sales; They are Waiting on a Bailout
Really? You may have heard this; the reality is that banks (and the government) are trying to do anything they can, within reason, to avoid foreclosing on property. To think that they would deny a Short Sale in hopes that some future legislation will pass and pay them for their loss is preposterous.
The reality is that more banks are aggressively pursuing Short Sales and agents (like the one who gave you this report) who understand how to process them.  Freddie Mac® recently hosted a national training webinar for real estate agents where they expressly stated the organizational goal of “eliminating distressed assets through modification or short sale”.

3. You Must be Behind in on your Mortgage in Order to Negotiate a Short Sale
While it is true that initially some lenders wanted you to be in default (missed a payment) before they were willing to consider a short sale – this trend has almost all together reversed. Today lenders are looking for verifiable hardship, monthly cash flow shortfall or pending shortfall and insolvency.

If you meet these three requirements and are in a position where you will soon not be able to afford your mortgage, act now! Don’t wait until the countdown clock to foreclosure has started and you have even less time left.

4.  Buyers are Not Interested in Short Sales and Avoid Them
This is a myth that potential sellers hear all the time – thankfully the reality is that today it is not.  In fact many agents are getting calls from buyers who say “I only want to look at foreclosures and Short Sales!”

Short Sales and Foreclosures have become synonymous – not with issues – but with GOOD DEALS. International buyers specifically are interested in these properties. If you list with the educated CDPE agent who gave you this report you have a very good chance of seeing a contract on your property, soon.
5. Listing my Home as a Short Sale is an Embarrassment
It is understandable that you may have reservations about letting the world know that you owe more on your home than it is worth however, understand that according to recent estimates, 1 out of 5 homeowners in the US is in your exact situation. You are to be congratulated for admitting you need help, taking action, and finding a professional who can work with you towards a solution.

With 40 to 60% of the sales in the US predicted to be Short Sales or foreclosures you are not alone!

6.  The Bank Would Rather Foreclose than Bother with a Short Sale
We know you have heard this; you may have even heard it from an overzealous collections agent working for a lender.  The reality is that banks do not want to foreclose on your property.  Banks, investors and event the federal government have all publicly said that if a person is qualified for a short sale the deal needs to be considered.

The qualifications are:

Financial Hardship – There is a situation that is causing you to have trouble affording your mortgage.
Monthly Income Shortfall – You have more month than money!  A lender will want to see that you cannot afford or will not be able to afford your mortgage soon.
Insolvency – The lender will want to see that you do not have significant liquid assets that would allow you to pay down your mortgage.

7.  There is not Enough Time to Negotiate a Short Sale Before My Foreclosure
This is a myth that probably hurts homeowners the most.  Many don’t realize that foreclosure is a process and there is time.

The foreclosing party (in most cases a lender) can stall a foreclosure up to the final day of the process.  These days many lenders will stall a foreclosure with as little as a phone call from you letting them know that you are trying to sell.  Almost all lenders will stall a foreclosure with a legitimate contract, in our view there is time until the foreclosure process is complete.

Sit down with John Riggins today to see what options you have and get on the path to recovery, there are options and he can help!

How to Qualify for a Short Sale

by John Riggins

Kapolei Real Estate: How to Qualify for a Short Sale

July 20th, 2009 John Riggins Posted in KAPOLEI REAL ESTATE NEWS, Kapolei real estate, oahu, short sales No Comments »

There are three main qualifications that a seller must have to qualify for a short sale: 1) Financial Hardship, 2) Monthly Shortfall, 3) Insolvency.  If you are hoping to qualify for a short sale with your Kapolei real estate keep reading.

  1. Financial Harship means that you have proof of why you are having financial difficulties. i.e. you lost your job, your business failed or you have too much debt.  Basically circumstances have changed from the day you signed your mortgage to today.
  2. Monthly Shortfall is the verification that you cannot afford your current mortgage.  A homeowner shows their “shortfall” on a sheet they fill out which is provided by their lender.  In a nutshell this is simple math: Total Monthly Income - Total Monthly Expenses = Monthly Shortfall.  If you do not have a current monthly shortfall but foresee one coming due to a layoff or mortgage increase you may still qualify if the issue is verifiable.
  3. Insolvency is when you do not have the means to pay down your mortgage.  Insolvency is when you owe more than you have in cash.  Having money in the bank is one thing, everyone needs to pay their bills and put food on the table and you do not have to be completely broke.  The mortagge company simply wants to see that you will be unable to pay your mortgage as time goes on.

For information on short sales on the island of Oahu contact John Riggins today.  John Riggins is one of only four Certified Distressed Property Experts (CDPE) in Hawaii and can help you with all of your real estate concerns.  If you are looking to purchase a Kapolei short sale call John Riggins today.

Ko Olina Reat Estate: It's a Buyers Market

by John Riggins

Ko Olina Real Estate: It’s a Buyers Market

June 29th, 2009 John Riggins Posted in KAPOLEI REAL ESTATE NEWS, KO OLINA RESORT, Kapolei real estate, Ko Olina real estate No Comments »

Photo courtesy of J Winfred

It is no surprise to anyone’s ears that it is a buyer’s market when it comes to real estate and Ko Olina Resort is no exception.  If you have ever been to the Ko Olina Resort on Oahu there is no doubt that you would want to return.  Perhaps you even said to yourself “someday I am going to own a home here.”  Well there could not be a better time to buy real estate in Ko Olina Resort.  Not only is inventory up but prices are down.  In this type of a market the buyer has a great deal of bargaining power.  There are plenty of sellers that not only want to sell but they need to sell.  If you are interested in looking at property in the Ko Olina resort area contact John Riggins today.  John Riggins knows the market and can help your realize your dream to own the best real estate on Oahu.

For more information about Ko Olina Resort Property as well as Kapolei Real Estate please contact John Riggins, Certified Distressed Property Expert.  Click here for access to the Oahu MLS and all available listings in the Kapolei area.

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Expanded Tax Break First Time Homebuyers

by John Riggins

Expanded Tax Break Available for 2009 First-Time Homebuyers


IR-2009-14, Feb. 25, 2009

Audio Files for Podcasts: English Spanish

WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service announced today that taxpayers who qualify for the first-time homebuyer credit and purchase a home this year before Dec. 1 have a special option available for claiming the tax credit either on their 2008 tax returns due April 15 or on their 2009 tax returns next year.

Qualifying taxpayers who buy a home this year before Dec. 1 can get up to $8,000, or $4,000 for married filing separately.

“For first-time homebuyers this year, this special feature can put money in their pockets right now rather than waiting another year to claim the tax credit," said IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman. “This important change gives qualifying homebuyers cash they do not have to pay back.”

The IRS has posted a revised version of Form 5405, First-Time Homebuyer Credit, on The revised form incorporates provisions from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The instructions to the revised Form 5405 provide additional information on who can and cannot claim the credit, income limitations and repayment of the credit.

This year, qualifying taxpayers who buy a home before Dec. 1, 2009, can claim the credit on either their 2008 or 2009 tax returns. They do not have to repay the credit, provided the home remains their main home for 36 months after the purchase date. They can claim 10 percent of the purchase price up to $8,000, or $4,000 for married individuals filing separately.

The amount of the credit begins to phase out for taxpayers whose adjusted gross income is more than $75,000, or $150,000 for joint filers.

For purposes of the credit, you are considered to be a first-time homebuyer if you, and your spouse if you are married, did not own any other main home during the three-year period ending on the date of purchase.

The IRS also alerted taxpayers that the new law does not affect people who purchased a home after April 8, 2008, and on or before Dec. 31, 2008. For these taxpayers who are claiming the credit on their 2008 tax returns, the maximum credit remains 10 percent of the purchase price, up to $7,500, or $3,750 for married individuals filing separately. In addition, the credit for these 2008 purchases must be repaid in 15 equal installments over 15 years, beginning with the 2010 tax year.

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Contact Information

Photo of John Riggins REALTOR RB11175 Real Estate
John Riggins REALTOR RB11175
John Riggins Real Estate
1003 Bishop Street, suite 2700
Honolulu HI 96813
Fax: 888.369.3210