Mary Jo Ryan Earns NAR Short Sales and Foreclosure Certification

Buyers and Sellers Benefit from REALTOR® Expertise in Distressed Sales

North Carolina, 2010 - Mary Jo Ryan with NC Realty Solutions has earned the nationally recognized Short Sales and Foreclosure Resource certification. The National Association of REALTORS® offers the SFR certification to REALTORS® who want to help both buyers and sellers navigate these complicated transactions, as demand for professional expertise with distressed sales grows.

"As leading advocates for homeownership, REALTORS® believe that any family that loses its home to foreclosure is one family too many, but unfortunately, there are situations in which people just cannot afford to keep their homes, and a foreclosure or a short sale results," said 2009 NAR President Charles McMillan. "Foreclosures and short sales can offer opportunities for home buyers and benefit the larger community, as well, but it's extremely important to have the help of a real estate professional like a REALTOR® who has earned the SFR certification for these kinds of purchases."

The certification program includes training on how to qualify sellers for short sales, negotiate with lenders, protect buyers, and limit risk, and provides resources to help REALTORS® stay current on national and state-specific information as the market for these distressed properties evolves. To earn the SFR certification, REALTORS® are required to take one core course and three Webinars. For more information about the SFR certification, visit or call 1-877-510-7855.

What is the difference between a Short Sale, a Foreclosure, and a Bank Owned/REO property?

A Short Sale is when the bank is owed more than the market value of an existing home. In this situation, the seller may need to prove to the bank/lien holder(s) that they are in a hardship situation to qualify for a short sale program and avoid foreclosure. Examples of this are loss of income, health issues, or being relocated 100+ miles away for employment purposes. This is a complicated and potentially long process. The seller may or may not be held responsible for the balance owed to the bank after the sale. There are federal government programs designed to assist sellers in this situation. We have been trained in these programs and can help you understand them as a seller. For Buyers: we want you to understand that buying a short sale property is NOT for everyone. Feel free to contact us if you are considering purchasing or selling a home that is in a short sale situation. We can help!

A Foreclosure is when the bank has exhausted all efforts to satisfy the loan repayment and they take the property back as collateral for the note. The homeowners are often required to vacate the property and may still be required to pay back a portion or all of what they owe. Even if the debt is "forgiven" there can be serious tax ramifications. A seller should consult with a qualified real estate agent, tax attorney and an account if facing a short sale or foreclosure. If there is not time to complete the short sale before the foreclosure is scheduled, the foreclosure is not automatically postponed. It is up to the bank servicing the loan and/or the investor. Again, this is why you need an experienced agent to assist you with this process!

An REO (Real Estate Owned) property is when the bank has already foreclosed on the property and is now attempting to recoup its losses by selling the home on the open market or at auction. In most cases, the home is sold "As-is, Where-is" with no representations or warranties as to its condition. Usually, a buyer will be given a short time (10 days is often typical) to have the property inspected and decide if they will move forward with the purchase.