Fort Walton Beach, Shalimar, Mary Esther Short Sales

 Contact Wendy Rulnick, Fort Walton Beach Florida short sale agent for help at 850-650-7883 ext 204 or email  

This Elliotts Point home at 118 Ferry Rd., NE, Fort Walton Beach, Florida was approved as a VA Compromise Short Sale. This was not an easy property to sell, even though the short sale approval was easy! The home had multiple active roof leaks and and the roof was covered with tarp and sand bags. The roof design was itself defective. There was aluminum and cloth-covered wiring.  The costs to repair the roof and electrical system were about $16,000.  The home needed other repairs. The only straightforward way to ensure a buyer could close after short sale approval, was to get a cash buyer.  Sure, there are mortgages available for homes that need repair, such as FHA 203K, but they are complex and closing is not guaranteed, especially with a fast time line and closing requirement after short sale approval that is typically 30 days. Since we limited the market for the Fort Walton Beach short sale home to only cash buyers we shrunk the pool of interested parties. Two buyers walked due to their home inspections and one buyer simply “defaulted” and failed to close after short sale approval.  The fourth buyer closed. It takes perseverance to accomplish a successful short sale.

Many current and former Eglin Air Force Base, Hurlburt Field, Duke Field, Whiting Field military personnel have used the VA Compromise Sale as a benefit when hardship hits and they are unable to pay their mortgages.  It is an honor to help those current and former military service members who may need to sell their Emerald Coast area property to avoid foreclosure.

Here are the details of the VA Compromise Sale of 118 Ferry Rd. NE, Fort Walton Beach, Florida:

Lienholder: Shellpoint Mortgage Servicing

Mortgage Balance: $185,000 approximately

Appr Sale Price: $155,900,000

Short Sale Appraised Value:  $165,000

Seller Cash Contribution: -0-

Seller Promissory Note: -0-

Waiver of Deficiency: Yes

BONUS TO SELLER: Since this was a VA Compromise Sale, the seller was eligible to receive $1500 as a VA relocation benefit.
Note: If your agent does not ask for this incentive – you are not going to receive it. I asked.

It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-259-0422
Email Wendy:

Overbrook Fort Walton Beach short sale


This short sale at 811 Overbrook Dr., Fort Walton Beach Florida was just approved! Here are the details:

Senior Lien (first mortgage): PNC

Balance: $120,000 appr

Junior Lien (second mortgage): Bank of America

Balance: $90,000 appr

Market Value:  $190,000 app

This short sale was only “short” to the junior lien, Bank of America. What does that mean?  If a home sale nets more than a senior lien’s balance, they are paid in full, therefore they are not “short”. The junior lien will get whatever leftover proceeds there are after paying the senior lien and other closing costs, such as title insurance, commission, pro-rated taxes, state transfer taxes, etc.  In many cases, the junior lien in this type of transaction gets a substantially higher payment than a regular short sale, where typically all liens are short. In a normal short sale, the senior lien will pay the junior lien a standard amount, such as 10% of their balance or a HAFA amount of $8,500.00, for example.

This Overbrook subdivision, Fort Walton Beach Florida, short sale netted Bank of America about $50,000, with which they were quite happy.  They approved the sale in 45 days.

It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

 Eglin AFB VA Compromise Sale


This short sale home near Eglin Air Force Base at 497 Managua Way, Mary Esther Florida, Colina del Oro, was just approved for a VA Compromise Sale!

Here are the details:

Mortgage Servicer (Senior Lien): PHH
Appr Balance:  $160,000
Junior Liens: none
Mortgage type: VA
Current Value: $104,000 appr
Time for approval: 95 days

VA Compromise Sales are an option for Eglin AFB PCS situations where the service member has to relocate to another base and is “upside down” in his mortgage.  The official “orders” are considered a short sale hardship. Here are the options available to the service member:

1. Rent out the home
2. Sell it as a short sale or VA Compromise Sale
3. Bring the cash difference to closing if available
4. Foreclosure

If you are an Eglin Air Force Base, Hurlburt Field, Duke or White Field service member who has PCS orders, call me to discuss your selling options.

It’s Wendy!


Sailwatch Landing short sale 


SPS and Etrade have approved this Sailwatch Landing condo in Fort Walton Beach Florida for short sale.

Here are the details:

Original Purchase price: $679,000

First Mortgage: SPS (Select Portfolio Servicing) ** note: this was originally a Bank of America loan that was “service released”

Balance: $530,000

Second Morgage: Etrade, serviced by PNC

Balance: $100,000

Market Value: about $280,000

This Sailwatch Landing, Fort Walton Beach, Florida short sale took about four months for SPS to approve. They asked for a complete package three times. That was frustrating. ETrade, however, approved the short sale in 30 days. They initially asked for a promissory note from the seller. This was negotiated to a full settlement at closing in exchange for a seller cash contribution.

If you are thinking about selling your Fort Walton Beach house or condo as a short sale, give me a call. No matter how many liens you have, and whatever lenders, I will help you figure it out.

It’s Wendy!

Mary Esther short sales

Do you have a  Mary Esther Florida home with multiple mortgages and liens that you need to short sale?  This synopsis of a recent short sale will give you an idea about possible outcomes.  An older home in Miramar Estates, Mary Esther, Florida was just approved for short sale, and had four liens.  It was a very difficult process,  but in the end - success!  Here are the details:

Senior Lien: Chase

Balance: $140,000 appr

Junior Lien: BBVA Compass

Balance:  $35,000 appr

Junior Lien: Eglin Federal Credit Union - two separate judgments

Balance: $40,000 for both liens

Current Market Value: $85,000 appr

Notes: When you list a short sale in Florida, one of the most important things you need to do is get a title search at the beginning of the listing.  That will reveal any outside liens or judgments the seller may not be aware of. In this case, there were two outstanding judgments for car loans and other credit from a local lender, Eglin Federal Credit Union. In Florida, these types of judgments or liens normally have to be released or settled in order to sell a property and transfer a clear title. They don't have to be related to the property itself, they automatically attach to any property sold in the State of Florida. There are some exceptions to paying judgments on Florida homestead properties with a short sale. This was not one of those cases. The seller was not aware of the judgments.  That is not uncommon. Many people think a creditor has dropped its case because they haven't been contacted in a while.  It can happen with credit cards, car loans, personal loans and  even utility bills.

Eglin Federal Credit Union was the most difficult part of this transaction. The senior lien, Chase, acted in their standard manner. The junior lien, BBVA Compass, did as well. But Eglin Federal would not budge on demanding almost 25% of its balance to settle its liens in full. They would not agree to simply "release" them for a smaller dollar amount to allow the closing.  Since the seller did not have the funds to pay them, the property had to be marketed with the stipulation that the buyer pay the settlement demand at closing.  We found a buyer who was willing to do this.  Chase agreed to pay BBVA Compass ten percent of its balance to release its lien.  The seller was satisfied with the results.  Many agents would have given up on this challenge.  It was not easy. but it was successful.

If you have multiple mortgages or other liens, and need to sell your Mary Esther Florida home as a short sale, contact an experienced Mary Esther Florida short sale specialist


It's Wendy!


Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy:



Willow Bend Wright short sale

This home at 3021 Yorktown Circle, Fort Walton Beach Florida was just approved for Bank of America short sale.  Located in the Willow Bend area of Wright, near Eglin Air Force Base, it is being sold as an investment property.  The Bank of America approval time was lengthy, but the results successful. Here are the details:

First Mortgage: Bank of America

First Mortgage Balance: $83,000 appr

Second Mortgage: Bank of America

Second Mortgage Balance: $60,000 appr

Current Market Value: $80,000 appr

Mortgage Types: Conventional

Short Sale Deficiency: Waived

Seller Contributions: None

Notes: The approval time for this Willow Bend Bank of America short sale was almost four months. Why so long? Bank of America originally tried to process this file as a HAFA (Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternative), which it did not qualify for. Two weeks were lost.  A new negotiator took over the file. The contract had to be re-signed by all parties removing the property from a trust. The buyer was in a remote area and could not return documents for a week at a time. More days were lost.  Bank of America did not counter offer the contract price which was fair market value.  Both notes will be "settled" and there will be no deficiency judgment.  There was no request for seller cash contribution or promissory note,even though this was an investment property.




 Fort Walton Beach HAP

This home in Vesta Heights, Fort Walton Beach Florida, has been approved for HAP sale.  The property went under contract just three days after going on the market! HAP approved the contract and replaced it with their own 11 weeks later.

Things to know:

1. Even though the HAP (Homeowners Assistance Program for U.S. military) website says your home should be marketed for 120 days,the fact is, HAP really cares that you get  "fair market value" (or 90% thereof). In this case, it was fortunate that the buyer happened to be looking for a home near Eglin Air Force Base and this exact match became available.  I've sold many HAP contingent homes in Fort Walton Beach, Navarre, Crestview and Destin Florida in less than a week. All the sales were subsequently approved by HAP, and none ever had a counter offer of price, nor had time on market questioned.

2. How is contract price supported to HAP?  When you get a contract on your HAP home, I prepare a market analysis for you to send in to HAP along with your contract.  Before you accept an offer, I let you know if the price and terms are in line with HAP might find acceptable. What does that mean? The contract should be approximately 90% of supportable fair market value.

3. What about cases of difficult to sell  HAP homes that only get low offers? If you can prove your home was exposed to the  market  for a period of time, you may be able to get a sale price that seems otherwise low approved by HAP.  An example I have is a home in Navarre Florida that was on East Bay, but surrounded by homes of much lesser quality. This property could only garner a seemingly low price.  We sent HAP all the detailed marketing for the property, along with showings and feedback from potential buyers. The contract price was approved.

Do you have questions about your potential HAP sale in Fort Walton Beach, Crestview, Destin or Navarre Florida? Email me at

It's Wendy!



Fort Walton Beach Fifth THird Short Sale

This Islander Beach condo in Fort Walton Beach Florida was approved for short sale. It was a complex process, since there were three mortgage liens on the property. Here are the details.

Senior Lien:  Fifth Third Bank

approx balance: $140,000

Junior Lien: Fifth Third Bank

approx balance: $100,000

Junior Lien: Liberty Savings Bank

approx balance: $150,000

Current Market Value:  $260,000

So, where to start with the challenge of three liens?  First, find out if any lienholder will be paid in full from the potential sale.  How do you do that?  Start by asking each lienholder for a "payoff", or the amount it will take to pay off the note.  Get it in writing, if you can. In this case, the Senior Lien, with a balance of $140,000, could be paid off in full with the market value of $260,000.  Here is where calcuations get tricky, though. The *next* lien, another Fifth Third mortgage, would get something from the sale proceeds, but how much? That is the tricky part.  When preparing a prelimary HUD-1 Settlement statement, your title agent must figure out the payoff for the senior lien months in advance. It's not easy, because legal fees and penalties add up each month, changing the amount to the next lien in line.  My title agency, Touchstone Land Title is a master at estimating a future balance, but it is not a guaranteed figure, only an estimate. Just make sure you have enough on the HUD to pay the required approval amount to the second lien, and the "extra", if your HUD was overestimated (or the property closes early), will likely have to go to them, as well.  Why is that?  When you have three liens, and the first will be paid in full, it is really like working with "two liens"...  The first only pays a set amount to the last lien. In this case, Fifth Third (junior), agreed to pay Liberty Savings Bank $9000.  Liberty Savings required a promissory note for much of their balance, which the seller agreed to.

I hope your head isn't spinning with this Fort Walton Beach short sale. Wait until my next one, in process now, four liens!

 It's Wendy!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.

Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy:





   This home in the Port Dixie neighborhood Shalimar Florida has been approved for short sale. There were two mortgages, Seterus(formerly LBPS), and CCO Mortgage for a total encumbrance of about $227,000.

Senior Lien: Seterus
Balance: $190,000
Junior Lien: CCO
Balance: $37,000
Property Value: $140,000

This short sale was approved by Seterus in just four weeks. They allowed 6% of the junior lien balance to be paid to CCO. CCO took 120 days to approve the sale. Their reason for the delay was understaffing. They required the seller to make a payment prior to closing. Both lenders issued a full waiver of deficiency. After approving the short sale, Seterus changed the locks on the house anyway. This required a counter-lock change to give buyers access to do their home inspections. All in a day's work.

If you are considering short sale to avoid foreclosure, contact a Shalimar short sale agent. We can write your success story together.

Ginny Mae USDA Short Sale Approved in Fort Walton Beach, Florida

 Bank America has approved this Fort Walton Beach Florida home for a Ginnie Mae USDA short sale. It was a lengthy process. Bank of America only recently added Ginnie Mae short sales to its Equator processing platform. This file was handled through emails and phone calls directly with a Bank of America Ginnie Mae specialist.

What is Ginnie Mae? Ginnie Mae is a governmenty entity that guarantees VA, HUD and USDA Rural Housing Services mortgages. This makes these loans more valuable as investments when sold to the secondary market, thus more attractive to mortgage servicers, such as Bank of America.

What about the deficiency on a USDA short sale? The deficiency is the amount of the note not covered by net proceeds of the sale. According to USDA's servicing guidelines:A borrower who successfully sells the property securing the loan using the PFS option is relieved of the mortgage obligation. The borrower shall not be pursued for deficiency judgments by either the Servicer or the Agency

One caveat about Ginnie Mae USDA short sales - you will not be approved unless you miss at least one payment. This is not true with many other short sales programs.

 This Blue Dolphin condo on Okaloosa Island Florida was just approved for short sale by Aurora Loan Services. Blue Dolphin is a small gulf-front complex on Abalone Court, Fort Walton Beach FL.
The original loan amount was $604,000 in 2007. Today, market value is about $340,000. Aurora Loan Services was slow to approve this Okaloosa Island short sale. They were not familiar with short-term vacation rentals, and continually asked for proof of rental income and leases. Typical short-term rentals don't have standard leases, since they are only for a day or two at a time. They are really more like hotel reservations. After numerous faxes and requests for documentation (Aurora took a week at a time to "review" any fax), we finally were able to get a negotiator. The short sale was approved in about 90 days.
Here is the typical short sale approval language for Aurora Loan Services. Note the reference to 1099-C for cancelled debt to be issued, as well as how Aurora reports to credit bureaus.
This lightning speed short sale approval for a Fort Walton Beach Florida townhouse in Shangra Woods was a great way to start 2011. How long did it take? 15 days!

December 20: Short Sale package faxed to Citi Mortgage

December 29: Negotiator assigned (who says people don’t work over the holidays?)

January 4: Approved!

This Fort Walton Beach short sale seller had one mortgage, which helped the process. This was not all “slam-dunk”, but close.

Citi slightly countered the purchase price with a minimum net requirement. I questioned the settlement statement, asking if all fees would be approved if the net were met. The buyer had asked for 6% closing cost credit. Citi limited the amount to 3%. (Many short sale lenders will not pay more than 3% if they even agree to extra closing costs for the buyer.)

The thorough package and excellent communications with the negotiator were the keys to success. Result? Happy New Year!

If you are facing foreclosure in Fort Walton Beach Florida, be sure to consult an attorney and an experienced Fort Walton Beach short sale agent.

Bank of America has approved the short sale for this Shalimar Florida townhome in Country Villas. The original mortgage was for $104,000. The sale price will be about $60,000.

The really good news for these Shalimar short sale sellers? No deficiency!


If you are considering a short sale to avoid foreclosure, contact an experienced Shalimar short sale agent.

It's Wendy!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.

Call 850-650-7883 ext 204

Email Wendy:

Shalimar Florida Short Sales & Pre Foreclosure Help.

Read Wendy's Shalimar Real Estate Blog

Wendy is a short sale and pre-foreclosure specialist and has been featured in "Kiplinger Personal Finance Magazine" and "Florida Realtor Magazine". Call Wendy Rulnick, Broker/Owner,to list and sell your home or condo on the Emerald Coast of Florida in Walton, Okaloosa and Santa Rosa County- Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Seagrove Beach, Watercolor, Sandestin, Seaside, Crestview, Rosemary Beach, Mary Esther, Shalimar, Eglin AFB, Hurlburt Field.

Regions Mortgage speedily approved a Waterscape condo for short sale in Fort Walton Beach, Florida. This Okaloosa Island condo was decorated with luxury in mind. The kitchen had granite counters, undermount sink, stainless steel appliances. The bunk room was an added bonus. Waterscape has two pools, two hot tubs, waterfall and impressive work-out center.

This Waterscape unit had a Regions mortgage of about $450,000. The sale price was about $260,000.

How did Regions approve this short sale in just two weeks?

- Complete package submitted to lender
- Strong fair market value offer

If you are considering selling your Okaloosa Island condo to avoid foreclosure, contact an experienced Fort Walton Beach real estate agent who specializes in short sales.

It's Wendy!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.

Call 850-650-7883 ext 204

Email Wendy:

My most recent Fort Walton Beach short sale approval was like going through ten rounds in a boxing match. The senior lien, Carrington Mortgage, initially wanted the seller to pay a $150,000 promissory note, or about $450 per month, to cover the loss. The seller, having no income, said no. Carrington then dropped the request and asked for a cash contribution of $10,000. Again, the seller said no. After weeks of wrangling, Carrington settled for the contract proceeds without any promissory note or cash contribution, and approved the short sale. Flagstar Bank, the junior lien, received a small contribution from the buyer. Here is the summary:

Short Sale property: Single Family home in Fort Walton Beach Florida

Senior Lien: Carrington Mortgage – balance $570,000

Junior Lien: Flagstar Bank – balance $100,000

Short Sale Offer: $375,000

Flagstar Cash Contribution: $5500 (from senior lien and buyer)

Time for Approval: Four months (it felt like six)

If you are considering selling your Fort Walton Beach Florida home as a short sale, it is best to hire an experienced Fort Walton Beach real estate agent.

Green Tree Servicing has approved the short sale on this home in Elliotts Point, Fort Walton Beach Florida. The odd thing about the approval was that Fannie Mae initially rejected the short sale because the seller was current on his payments, even though he had a hardship, as I wrote in "Current on Your Mortgage? Short Sale Denied!". He was told he could get 30 days behind, then resubmit the short sale package. He did so, and another 30 days later, the sale was approved!
My most recent approval was received this morning, approximately seven weeks from submission, from Washington Mutual. It was a very smooth transaction. Here is the summary:

Property: House in Fort Walton Beach Florida

Value and Offer: About $110,000

First Mortgage: CITI owed about $70,000

Second Mortgage: Washington Mutual owed about $90,000

Hardship: Medical

Package Submitted: August 13

Appraisal Ordered: September 3

Approval Email: September 30

Factors: First mortgage, Citi, was in collections, but not in a short sale position, since net was enough to cover full balance- so only needed approval from WAMU

Delays: Washington Mutual "lost" Letter of Authorization and "lost" part of the ahort sale package

Overall, this was a quick and mostly problem-free Fort Walton Beach short sale.

It's Wendy!

Contact Wendy Rulnick to sell your home as a short sale.


Wendy Rulnick
Rulnick Realty, Inc
Ph: 850-259-0422Fax:1-866-888-7792
12889 Emerald Coast Pkwy #107-A
Destin, FL 32550 US