This is a very common question that most homeowners ask during the initial short sale consultation. The short answer is, yes, you can continue to live in your home during the short sale process.
The process of a short sale is much like a regular sale as it begins with listing the home for sale, and concludes with the buyer closing on their financing. However the timeframe of the approval process that takes place in between varies depending on the lender. Some lenders can take 60 days or longer to approve short sale terms, and when you add 30 days for obtaining the initial offer and 30 days for the buyer to close financing, you are now looking at 120 days or longer for the entire process. Some short sales can close within 90 days, some take 6 months or longer. But just like a regular sale, you can continue to live in the home during the entire process, and in most cases the homeowner is not making payments during the short sale process.
I always recommend to my short sale clients to have an exit strategy in place early on in the process, which includes an area in which they would like to move, and an idea of the type of housing they are going to live in (usually rent) and the price range. These are things that can be researched early on in the short sale process. When we get closer to having the full short sale approval from the lender, we pinpoint homes that are available for rent and start submitting applications. Once a rental application has been approved, the homeowner can then begin moving in that last 30 days timeframe of closing on the short sale.
For more info on how this process works feel free to contact us!