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Foreclosures Could Spike With Fiscal Cliff

Housing finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have also made it short sales easier, introducing new guidelines that allow borrowers who are even current on their payments to do a short sale if they have a "hardship" such as the death or disability of a co-borrower, illness, divorce or legal separation or distant transfer of employment.

Short sales of properties not in foreclosure increased 15% in the third quarter from the second quarter according to RealtyTrac's report released Thursday .

In states such as Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island, short sales account for more than 40% of all residential sales.

Short sales account for 16% of all sales in Arizona, 14% of all sales in California and 29% of sales in Florida.

The final sales price of all short sales was on average $94,896 short of the loan amount. In Massachusetts, the average forgiven amount stood at $171,907, while in California and Nevada, the forgiven amount averaged $135,000.

More data on foreclosure trends can be found in the report. .

--Written by Shanthi Bharatwaj in New York



>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Shanthi Bharatwaj.

>To follow the writer on Twitter, go to http://twitter.com/shavenk.

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Disclosure: TheStreet's editorial policy prohibits staff editors and reporters from holding positions in any individual stocks.
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