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We were closing on a condo-hotel unit today. REO property. All documents are sent, together with a cashier's check. The copy of a driver's license came so dark, that I did not send it and this was the only thing that was missing.
Called in the morning to make sure the Title Company received the package. Yep, they have it ... BUT... they need a Social Security Number from the buyer.
Why? The closing agent said that they «always get social security numbers». According to her the Seller requires this information and there will be no closing if we do not present it.
Nobody said a word before that they would need this, and now it popped up. She impatiently tells me that this is in the documents he sighed, and it makes him a negligent Buyer… Wow! And this means that I am a piece of work, who did not read the documents and did not advise the Client… I do not remember seeing it…
She can't understand why the Buyer would object to giving them SS#. She says she is getting it from every buyer. And I believe she does. So, what if the Buyer refuses to provide his SS#? She said there will be no closing.
Really? Hey, lady, take this freakin’ unit and deal with it, is that what you want? You have the Buyer’s address, his date of birth, and now you will have his Social Security number. Do you also need the keys from his Mercedes and his House?
I called the Buyer, and yep, he was not going to give it to them unless they could explain why the needed it.
Meanwhile I receive an e-mail “Sorry guys but told you we could not fund without the Social Security #. I have about one hour to get them to be able to fund today”. I am calling the Listing agent and telling her that unless she can contact the Asset Manager and resolve it, there will be no deal.
I am calling the Title Company 20 minutes to 5 PM. The Buyer will not give them his Social Security #, and if they want the unit back, they can have it. She stops me and says that we can get the keys. They dropped the requirement. It is a done deal.
My gut feeling tells me that Asset Manager (sic. Lender) never asked for it in the first place. My gut feeling usually knows…
How often do we voluntarily give these three pieces of information, which together give you all the power in the world: Address, DOB andn Social Security # simply because they demand it from us. Yes, we can (maybe) fight, yes, we can go to the attorney... but do we really want to make life complicated? We don't...
We do not like it, but we keep giving it out. Why even anyone needs to steal the identity, when we are giving it up voluntarily?
I would love to see that it is made illegal to ask all three pieces of vital information. Why a rental management company needs to know my DOB? (Employee, who we fired, drained your card as a way to say "Happy Biurthday). Or why any doctor require you to give the receptionist your SS# even if you are paying cash?
We need to outlaw it. It is too easy to steal. A disgruntled employee in a hotel "stole" this information from 136 guests and used their Credit Cards. Did he really steal? No, this is part of booking a room... We give it to them...
And if we outlaw it, then only you will have it, and not a waiter at the restaurant, or a Hotel Front Desk clerk, or a receptionist at your dentist's... The biggest threat is not stealing from you by out of this world smarta$$ hackers... it is what we give people. When paying for gas, for food, for services...
* Image courtesy of Vectorportal via Flickr.com under Creative Commons License
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.