short sale attorney: LISTING PRICE GUIDELINE LETTER - FANNIE MAE - 02/06/14 11:18 AM
Fannie Mae through its servicer Wells Fargo has a new letter regarding "suggested" pricing for a short sale.  The letter - copied below in redacted fashion - provides some interesting insight into the lender's internal concepts with an eye toward how lenders have been hurt in the past by making pricing or other negotiation decisions for a short sale.
The letter is at the end of this article - 
First it says that they have recently done a property valuation.  In this case for or by Fannie Mae, the investor.  Then they provide a recommended list price.  Note that this recommended. … (16 comments)

short sale attorney: BEWARE STRATEGIC MORTGAGE DEFAULT? FANNIE AND FREDDIE LOOKING FOR YOU! - 10/20/13 09:47 AM
For those homeowners and former homeowners that did a “strategic default” or just ignored (OR ARE IGNORING) the mortgage foreclosure filed against their property, a strong wake-up call occurred last month when Fannie and Freddie were told to start collecting on these potential income sources to shore up their own financial condition – that means they need to get deficiency judgments from borrowers that walked away from their homes and collect on them!
Deficiency judgments are available in “recourse” states where a foreclosure occurred and the amount of the value of the property at the time of the foreclosure sale was … (3 comments)

short sale attorney: BANK OF AMERICA SHORT SALE APPROVAL LETTER - NEW EXAMPLE - 09/16/13 11:17 AM
What was once the area of vague innuendo and assumption and presumption of DEFICIENCY WAIVER intentions and meaning behind Short Sale Approval Letters is finally – after 5 years of confusion – becoming clear and concise.  The question of course is – IS THE BANK WAIVING THE DEFICIENCY?  Bank of America has now addressed that issue, at least for some of the loans they service.
Below you will see an approval letter received in September 2013 from Bank of America.  Compare it to the one a few years ago found about the 2010 letter changes at BoA in my article Bank … (39 comments)

short sale attorney: NEW FLORIDA FORECLOSURE CHANGES – DOES IT AFFECT BROKER ADVICE? - 06/24/13 01:49 PM
If you have a client that has a just filed or soon to be filed residential foreclosure action in Florida, what new timelines can you expect under the new Florida Foreclosure Law?  Effective with all NEW lawsuits filed on or after July 1, 2013 the new streamlined foreclosure procedures law will govern how fast the lawsuit will proceed – or at least that is the theory behind the new law.  Reality can be quite something else.
Under the law as it existed before June 7, 2013 (the date Governor Scott signed the legislation) an uncontested or minimally contested foreclosure action could … (3 comments)

short sale attorney: QUIET TITLE MORTGAGE FORECLOSURE DEFENSE MERITLESS IN FLORIDA - 01/13/13 02:22 AM
In an expected move by Florida courts, the scheme of filing a quiet title action to eliminate a lender’s claim of a lien through its mortgage has been deemed “meritless”.  The situation revolves around Fidelity Land Trust and Sunshine State Land Trust, both companies that received deeds from hopeful homeowners that paid the companies to “eliminate” their mortgages. 
The Palm Beach Post reported that the concept was based on the Trust not having notice of the unrecorded mortgage transfer (assignment), and therefore not being subject to the mortgage.  Not reported was the underlying concept about which I wrote in QUIET … (15 comments)

short sale attorney: A SHORT SALE ADDENDUM FORM THAT WORKS - FINALLY - 10/07/12 06:12 AM
The short sale addendum is evolving again - this time the Florida Association of Realtors has done an excellent job of fixing the shortfalls of their previous two versions that were harshly criticized by me when they were published.  Key elements of the "fix" that came out in September 2012 include allowing a choice of when the property inspection period is to occur and finally recognizing that a mortgage release alone is not necessarily a waiver of a deficiency of the promissory note.
My criticisms and copies of the previous two versions of the FAR short sale addendum forms are contained in these … (4 comments)

short sale attorney: REAL ESTATE AGENTS BECOMING PAWN IN SCAM ON ATTORNEY TRUST ACCOUNTS - 08/17/12 02:29 AM
Real Estate Agents and Brokers should be aware of a scam in which they are being unknowingly recruited. It involves fake cashier’s checks from what seems like a qualified buyer and an easy and fat commission check. The buyer finds the real estate agent for the purchase of a home and is asked to refer the financially qualified buyer to an attorney whom the real estate agent recommends for the purpose of purchase of a home.
The qualified buyer is using the name(s) of real people, mostly in the United Kingdom. Two of the recent names being used are Dr. Timothy Perrin, … (13 comments)

short sale attorney: FANNIE AND FREDDIE REO TRANSFER TAX EXEMPTION IS ILLUSORY - 06/24/12 12:50 AM
When the Hernando County Clerk of Court decided to sue Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac this past week, it made me think “it’s about time”.  One basis for the suit is that Fannie and Freddie enjoy an exemption from paying the documentary stamp tax on transfers of REO real estate, but that exemption is illusory. Many Realtors know there is another simple loophole that affects buyers of these entities’ REO properties, and that is the real estate contract itself.
BASIS FOR THE EXEMPTION
The exemption used by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac involves Florida Statute section 201 on the State side (and … (7 comments)

short sale attorney: STAYING AT THE TOP OF THE PILE IN A CHANGING ECONOMY - 03/22/12 07:42 AM
I was honored this week by being the Featured Member of Attorneys Title Insurance Fund – known in Florida as THE FUND, one of the premier title underwriters in Florida, in their first monthly MEMBER SPOTLIGHT.  The initial part of the article is accessible at www.thefund.com.  The full article is reproduced below.  The crux of the article is that being a real estate attorney and staying a real estate attorney has been very challenging since late 2007, and like real estate agents, rediscovering oneself and understanding and reacting to the needs of your community of potential and existing customers / clients, … (3 comments)

short sale attorney: SHORT SALE STANDARDIZATION INCLUDED IN FORECLOSURE SETTLEMENT - 02/10/12 12:48 AM
 
Somewhat buried in the Attorneys General Foreclosure Settlement announced February 9th is a part on simplifying the short sale process. Some of the requirements are already used by some lenders, but standardization and disclosure of the procedures is a new concept.
 
The "rule" which is found by fishing around www.nationalforeclosuresettlement.com, says:
 
Banks/servicers shall make information publicly available on short sale requirements.
 
Banks/servicers shall develop a short sale process that allows homeowners to obtain a short sale evaluation before putting the home on the market.
 
Banks/servicers shall confirm in writing that a request for short … (3 comments)

short sale attorney: TAX RELIEF FOR SHORT SALES EXPIRES IN 356 DAYS - 01/11/12 11:33 PM
The clock is ticking until the expiration of the 2007 Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Act expires on the last day of December this year.  Previously set to expire earlier, Congress extended the expiration date to end in effective January 1, 2013.  Will it be extended again?  Is it necessary?
 
The extension should be extended again – but that is up to Congress.  The effect of the Act is to allow the income that is created when a mortgage is reduced in principal to be exempted from ordinary income.  That saves significant amounts of money for the borrower.
 
As an example, … (6 comments)

short sale attorney: HERE IT IS - THE FIXED FREDDIE MAC SHORT SALE AFFIDAVIT - 01/11/12 03:18 PM
Here it is! The 2012 version of the much despised short sale addendum from Freddie Mac!  As reported in several preceding articles, thanks to the American Land Title Association and others, the "sting" of being liable for any other party's misdeeds in a short sale transaction has been more or less alleviated.
Strangely, it is still called an addendum, not an affidavit, and refers to an affidavit, which in fact is the addendum. Go figure......
The new form has a new paragraph 14 along with other subtle changes, but the end effect is that it is clear that you know what … (8 comments)

short sale attorney: FREDDIE MAC SHORT SALE AFFIDAVIT CHANGES TAKE EFFECT? - 01/03/12 01:31 PM
January 1, 2012 has come and gone and yet Freddie Mac servicers are still using the obsolete and highly objectionable Short Sale Affidavit.  I have been keeping Active Rain readers up to date on developments regarding the infamous Short Sale Affidavit – see SHORT SALE ARMS LENGTH AFFIDAVIT MAJOR REVISION NEGOTIATED TODAY, and STAND-OFF WITH FREDDIE MAC OVER SHORT SALE ADDENDUM - ALTA GETS INVOLVED, and Freddie Mac Short Sale Addendum - Item #13 - I DON'T THINK SO!!
Today I received an email from Bank of America demanding that the attached documents be signed WITHOUT ANY CHANGES.  The problem is that the … (6 comments)

short sale attorney: SHORT SALE ARMS LENGTH AFFIDAVIT MAJOR REVISION NEGOTIATED TODAY - 11/18/11 02:37 PM
Today there was an important resolution to the Freddie Mac short sale affidavit that practically every bank has adopted regardless of the loan being Freddie Mac or not. As written in my previous articles (Freddie Mac Short Sale Addendum - Item #13 - I DON'T THINK SO!! and STAND-OFF WITH FREDDIE MAC OVER SHORT SALE ADDENDUM - ALTA GETS INVOLVED), in response to a crackdown on fraud in flipping, renting, straw buyers, and inter-family transfers, the lenders sought EVERYONE, including the title agents, short sale facilitators and real estate agents on both sides of the transaction, to totally indemnify the shorted … (7 comments)

short sale attorney: SHORT SALE RESCUE FRAUD ON DESPERATE HOMEOWNERS - 11/08/11 11:53 PM
I don’t know where to start, this story is so typical of ripping off desperate homeowners thanks to many “get rich through short sales” seminars and those practicing what they were preached.  In this case, congratulations to the fraudster – he pocketed $60,000 with no investment! – But now he has a real risk of going to jail.
Mrs. Smith, a Haitian that speaks little English, was current with her mortgage but having problems making ends meet.  The mortgage amount was greater than the value of the home (the home was upside down) and after hearing and reading about mortgage modification … (46 comments)

short sale attorney: MORTGAGE INSURANCE SUBROGATION AND WHY IT DRIVES THE SHORT SALE DEAL - 11/01/11 12:43 AM
Mortgage Insurance has become a problem when negotiating a short sale. What seems like a straight forward negotiation becomes one of hard fought demands to reach a viable solution. The reason is the existence of mortgage insurance on the mortgage loan. Now many borrowers hear that the lender's mortgage insurance company is making demands upon the borrower in a short sale and wonder why there is mortgage insurance? Lenders always required mortgage insurance if the loan being made was greater than 80% of the value of the home when the loan was made. It was typically called PMI.
However, lenders were … (7 comments)

short sale attorney: STAND-OFF WITH FREDDIE MAC OVER SHORT SALE ADDENDUM - ALTA GETS INVOLVED - 09/14/11 09:38 AM
PRESENTING THE SHORT SALE ADDENDUM YOU CAN'T SIGN!   Agents hold on to your wallets as this could cost you big time!  This is just too big and important to let one blog article suffice.  And developments on this are occurring quickly.  The problem was pointed out in my re-blog Freddie Mac Short Sale Addendum - Item #13 - I DON'T THINK SO!!  on September 9, 2011.
  
On September 3rd there was a telephone conference call between ALTA (American Land Title Association) staff in Washington, DC and Freddie Mac’s Short Sale team to specifically discuss the addendum reproduced in Freddie Mac Short Sale … (11 comments)

short sale attorney: I HAVE TO STOP PAYING MY MORTGAGE TO GET THE LENDER TO TALK TO ME - 08/24/11 02:00 AM
 
 
Would you jump out of an airplane being told by a stranger that you had a parachute but with you not really knowing you had a parachute?  I should have a nickel for each time a person tells me they stopped paying their mortgage so their lender would speak to them.  If you are trying to do a short sale, loan modification or deed in lieu of foreclosure, whether or not to stop paying your mortgage is the certainly the first question asked.
 
IF YOU HEAR IT ENOUGH TIMES IT MUST BE TRUE…..
 
Common talk on the street … (27 comments)

short sale attorney: SHORT SALE - REVERSE MORTGAGE SOLUTION TURNED INTO FRAUD - 07/07/11 01:02 AM
There are sometimes opportunities where a homeowner qualified for a reverse mortgage is having problems meeting the day to day expenses of life, resulting in financial hardship.  Often this results in the homeowner scrimping on drugs, or food, just to pay the mortgage and electricity.  A reverse mortgage can be a very viable solution to those with equity in the home. 
The equity can be realized in several ways - the valuation of the property may be sufficient to show equity over existing mortgages, or perhaps the home is in foreclosure and the lender will agree to a short payoff and … (11 comments)

short sale attorney: SOLUTION DESCRIBED - AGENT 100% LIABLE FOR 30% PAYMENT TO IRS BY COLLECTING RENTS FOR A FOREIGN OWNER - 07/04/11 12:23 PM
This is a follow-up article to my post AGENT 100% LIABLE BY COLLECTING RENTS FOR A FOREIGN OWNER TO PAY 30% TO THE IRS here on Activerain. Several readers (and clients) requested information on how to continue to properly represent foreign person owners of USA properties that receive rental income, and NOT be liable for the 30% mandatory withholding requirement of the IRS. Indeed the answer is to obtain and retain a CERTIFICATE OF FOREIGN ORGANIZATION FOR US TAX WITHHOLDING - also known as IRS Form W-8ECI.  
In order to avoid the requirement that 30% of the GROSS income from the rental of a … (7 comments)

 
Richard Zaretsky, Florida Real Estate Attorney (THE ZARETSKY LAW GROUP - Board Certified Real Estate Atty and AUTOMATED LAND TITLE COMPANY) Rainmaker large

Richard Zaretsky

Florida Real Estate Attorney

West Palm Beach, FL

More about me…

THE ZARETSKY LAW GROUP - Board Certified Real Estate Atty and AUTOMATED LAND TITLE COMPANY

Address: 1615 Forum Place, Suite 3A, West Palm Beach, Fl, 33401

Office: 5616896660 x 107

Mobile: (561) 329-2279

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