Short sales will pick up as we get near the end of the year.

An increasing number of homeowners who are underwater on their mortgage are selling their homes by short sale, and that could become an even more popular option during the rest of the year.

That’s partly because of a law set to expire at the end of 2012 that offers tax relief for homeowners who sold their home in a short sale or have had some other sort of mortgage debt forgiven or canceled, such as in a foreclosure or modification that included principal reduction.