Returning to the Housing Market After a Short Sale, Foreclosure

Things are starting to look up for Americans who lost their homes during the recession.

Things are starting to look up for Americans who lost their homes during the recession
By SHARE

[In Pictures: 10 Ways Your Home Can Pay You Money]

Harmon recently worked with a couple in their 60s who bought a new home with a Department of Veterans Affairs loan two years after selling their previous house in a short sale. "They weren't proud of it, but they're picking themselves up again," she says, adding that younger homeowners often have a harder time bouncing back from a short sale because of the impact on their kids and the desire to keep up with the Joneses.

While buying a house seemed nearly impossible for the couple thanks to the competitive local market and the longer closing time for a VA loan, Harmon says building a relationship with the seller and the seller's agent helped the deal close. "We strategized our offer in a way to give the seller everything we possibly could give him because we were bound by the terms of the VA," she says.

Corrected on 05/06/2013: A previous version of this story misspelled Heather Harmon’s name.