How to write a short sale hardship letter

How to write a short sale hardship letter

A hardship letter can be key to acceptance into the program

As part of your loan modification, or short sale package all lenders ask for the homeowner to write a «hardship letter». This is simply a letter stating to the lender what caused the problem you are having, that has made you fall behind on your mortgage payments.

It needs to be only one page in length, and to the point on the circumstances. Some experts advocate using handwritten letters, but typed letters seem to be just as effective. However, your signature must be handwritten.


Step 1


Write the following in a column, as the heading on the left side of the paper.

Date the letter with the current date. RE: Bank’s Name, Loan #, Your Name, Address, City, State, Zip, Phone #, Email

Step 2


To Whom It May Concern:

Start out by telling them how you never thought you would be in this position, and you want to do the right thing.

Step 3

The circumstances

But, because of (the circumstance or circumstances) I have not been able to keep up with my mortgage payment obligation. Be specific of the problem but don’t write extensively on it.

Step 4

What you need

Now you need to state whether you are writing this to get a loan modification, because it is a temporary situation. If it is a temporary situation, you need to tell how and when the situation will improve, and how you will be able to make the modified payments in the future.

Step 5

Or you need

If the letter is for a short sale, you need to state that the problem is an ongoing one, or permanent situation, and you are requesting a short sale.

Step 6


In closing you could say you are hoping the short sale can be approved quickly. Then thank them for their consideration in this matter.

Step 7



(Hand sign)

Things Needed
• lender’s name
• loan number
• pertinent dates
• use of computer or
• pen and paper

Tips & Warnings
• These are typical reasons for the hardship
• Mortgage payments have gone up
• Loss of job
• Reduction of income
• Medical bills
• Serious illness
• Death
• Divorce
• Damage to the house
• Unable to rent a rental house
• Unable to sell above amount owed
• Job relocation
• Military service
• Incarceration
• Failure of business


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