I have several clients interested in short sales and some listings that are short sales - all take a long long time. It's been 4 months with one listing  with no end in sight yet. Short sales are slow because lenders are a) backed up with massive numbers of short sales, and b) not in a hurry to lose money.

While short sales are a great way to get a good deal, another tactic is to go to another listing that is not a short sale, inform them of your offer price on the short sale and see if the seller will accept the same or similar price. Once in a while this may work for you, even if you have to pay a little bit more money. The benefit of course is you get to close when you want to.

The longest I have heard of a short sale going in Honolulu is 13 months. So if you're in escrow for that long and prices drop even further, what do you do? You've just wasted 8 months. The name of the game in purchasing a short sale is - patience.