A short sale takes place when the home value is lesser than what is owed to the bank. (In other words, the property is upside down). It is called a “Short Sale” because the payoff to the lender will be less than the mortgage owed, hence the seller will be short on his payment. In these cases, home owners ask the lender to approve the short sale. This process can be many weeks because the lender will review the owners’ financials, and property value, before approving of the short sale.