Just somthing to think about regarding promissory notes: Once you close on the short sale (even if you sign a promissory note) the bank has no collateral (ie your property) to hold over your head and threaten to foreclose on or sue you on. It's an unsecured debt at this point (kind of like a credit card) so the worst they can do is harrass the heck out of you for their money. Make the payment you agree to for a month or 2 and then call and try and renegotiate the repayment terms or negotiate a payoff. Tell them that you tried making the payments for a few months but your hardship has worsened and you can't afford it anymore. Offer an amount to settle with them on and continue negotiating until you get what you want.