I received a call a few weeks ago from an unhappy seller. Their home first listed in January 2011. Seller was unhappy because the San Jose Short Sale Agent hired a third party negotiator to manage the short sale with Bank of America. The listing agent did not have a handle on the short sale or the short sale process.
The seller was very unhappy because the second buyer was not performing. An initial deposit was not required of the buyers. Short sale approval letter arrives and the buyer does not put the deposit into escrow. Listing agent is dragging their feet waiting for the buyer to perform. Hoping, wishing, and praying that the appraisal on the other property the buyers wrote an offer on would not appraise and the buyers would move forward with the purchase of the Sellers property. If your head is not spinning, it should be.
Seller was very unhappy and asked if I would represent them. Of course I would be happy to help. I explained that the listing agreement between the seller and the agent would first need to be canceled. Once that happens, send me a copy of the cancellation of contract and I would be happy to meet with the sellers and explain my short sale process.
Within days I received a copy of the cancellation of contract. I verified the agent gave a full release and I verified the listing was canceled on the MLS.
After several hours of consulting with the sellers we agreed to move forward. The seller was impressed with my short sale success rate and the fact that I manage all aspects of the short sale. The listing agreement and all the disclosures were signed. The property was listed on the MLS and all the marketing completed.
After two days on the MLS I received a call from an agent advising that he will be submitting an offer. Several phone calls and emails later I received a full price, all cash offer. While reviewing the offer … it hit me! The agent representing the buyer was the prior listing agent.
I notified the seller of the offer. They asked if the buyer “was the first buyer that walked.” Of course I did not know who the former buyers were however I could read the name of the buyer on the contract.
The buyer the previous listing agent is now representing is the first buyer who released the contract within days of receiving short sale lender approval.
Are the sellers skeptical about accepting the offer? You bet they are!
Did the seller accept the offer? Yes.
I explained to the sellers there are no guarantees with short sales. My process requires that buyers deposit a minimum of 1% initial deposit into escrow upon acceptance of the offer. The buyers also agree that the deposit is non-refundable for 90 days. This is one measure of buyer motivation. Buyers must also sign and return all of the disclosures with their offer. The buyer and the agent followed my offer writing instructions. Buyer also wrote a letter of apology; admitted he made a mistake; that he should already be living there; and promised to close the sale.
Because the file is still in "closing status" in Equator, I contacted the Bank of America closing agent who "requested an urgent soft decline from management." If management approves we will not have to start the short sale process over again.
In the meantime, I re-initiated the short sale approval on the second lien with Bank of America Home Equity Department.