Bank of America (BAC) launched a new short sale program that could pay distressed homeowners between $2,500 and $30,000 in relocation assistance.
Over the last two years, the bank completed roughly 200,000 short sales. For the first three months of this year, it completed 30,000. As new servicing requirements and corrections lengthened the foreclosure process over the last two years, short sales have taken a greater share of the market. In some areas, short sales have surpassed REO transactions as a percentage of the market.
The new program with BofA requires a borrower to work with the bank to obtain a preapproved sales price before submitting a purchase offer. To qualify for the program, a short sale offer must be submitted by the end of 2012 and close by Sept. 26, 2013.
BofA said short sales already started may be eligible.
"This program can help customers make a planned transition from ownership when home retention options have been exhausted or they have made a decision not to keep the home," said Bob Hora, executive of home transition services for BofA.
The program will be offered for mortgages owned and serviced by the bank. The amount of relocation assistance provided will be determined on a case-by-case basis.