We have been seeing the number of short sale listings decrease throughout 2013. At the beginning of 2012, about 30% of the listings in Frederick County were short sales. Lately the number has been about 10% to 12%. We still believe that short sales won't increase very much, as the economy recovers.

But we will still have short sales with us for a few years. Just recently, we talked to someone who is a government contractor. Because of Sequestration, her income has been cut in half. Most likely, she will need to short sell her home.

It is unfortunate, but a short sale is often the best scenario for a homeowner who might be facing foreclosure. A short sale is often the only solution.

 *  A short sale will have a negative affect on someone's credit score, but only a fraction of what a foreclosure will do. Often someone with a government security clearance will need to watch their credit score carefully to keep their security clearance. A short sale is the best option.

*  A short sale is best for the neighborhood. There will be less of a negative effect on other home values, and less of a negative affect on the property itself, as it is not empty until the sale.

*  A short sale is much easier to recover from in many ways than a foreclosure. Someone who has sold a home in a short sale can now buy again in a year, in some cases 2. It takes much longer after a foreclosure.

If you, or any one you know is facing a hardship, contact the Highland Group to see if a short sale is the solution.

Chris Highland: 301-401-5119