Why would a Homeowner even consider a short sale?  What's in it for them?

I just realized that an offer I was about to present was a Short Sale. How was I going to present that offer to a Seller that evening?

We know that one of the conditions of short sale approval, a non-negotiable provision, is the Seller receive ZERO PROCEEDS from the sale. So if the Seller gets nothing, why would they agree to do it? 

Why would they go through all that trouble when it would be just as easy to file bankruptcy and walk away, or, deed back the house to the bank and walk away, or simply walk away, closing the book on that portion of their lives....

What could motivate the Seller to work toward a goal that would result in no monetary reward?  It would have to be something worth more than money.  So, the question is,  "What's worth more than money?"

When I meet with a distressed homeowner for the first time, we cover a lot of ground in a short time. If I've done my job, the barriers are down and truth is on the table. When the meeting draws to a close, I am frequently asked, "Can you keep this (the foreclosure/Sheriff's Sale) from the newspaper? I would just die if my mother/father/sister/brother/neighbor/friend/co-worker found out!"      

To a family in a heightened emotional state, realizing their continued homeownership is not an option, what's really important?  Self Respect?  Dignity?  Integrity?  Reputation?  Pride?   Having some control?  Are these feelings worth more than money?  You bet they are!

The distressed Santa Cruz Real Estate Homeowner, after all measures to save their home have failed,  must be made to realize their remaining choices are limited to allowing their home to be auctioned off at a public sale, a sale anyone could learn about, attend, and possibly become the winning bidder... then endure further humiliation by being subject to a forcible eviction.... Or,  the homeowners can act responsibly, participate in a proactive process to mitigate potential damages, and maintain some degree of control by moving on their own terms.  

After accurately painting a factual, worst case scenario (public auction/forcible eviction/financial consequences) the real estate broker must articulate to the homeowners that he/she is confident that a successful short sale will protect their future creditworthiness, and imply that by acting responsibly and participating in a viable solution...they will experience a renewed feeling of self worth.

          What's worth more than money?  Self respect.