In the end, I'd wait for your RE agent. Here's why:
In theory, if it has been forelcosed on there should be a foreclosure deed recorded with the county (some places city) recorder of deeds. However, in many cases this is not recorded promptly or does it contain much information. The original mortgage will be recorded as well there. But, Mortgages are put into securities, so often a trust will hold title. The industry actually even has a master trust to hold mortgages (Called Mortgage Electronic Registration System (mersinc.com) because of how many transfers take place.
In the end, the mortgage holder may be represented by a loan servicing company who filters the information. In the end, the holder of the mortgage doesn't want to deal with you because they have too many loans, now too many homes..so they have servicers and real estate agents to represent them. Who are under contract. WIth today's market it takes days to get answers and it would be worse if they negotiated each one directly.
And, if its a true short sale where the home is yet to be fully foreclosed on, they have no legal basis to talk to you, only their borrower, about an short sale.
In my experience 170k vs 175k isn't a big deal tto a mortgageholder. Hold out for an answer.good luck.
25 years mortgage banking