Banks Write Their OWN Rules

Real Estate Agent with The Boulevard Company SC 66445

Last week I helped my buyer client write an offer on a bank-owned, foreclosed property. We set the expiration of the offer at 5:00 Friday afternoon (last Friday). We wrote the offer on Tuesday (last Tuesday). The bank set the listing price. The bank should know what they are willing to accept for the property, right? This is not a short sale, so there should be MUCH LESS red tape to cut through to get the ball rolling, right?

That was my thinking when we wrote the offer.

Well, here it is, Tuesday, seven days after we made the offer. Two business days after the offer expired. The listing agent/team works exclusively with banks and warned me when I sent the offer that the banks don't look at offer expiration dates but that they (the listing agent/team) would respond to me as quickly as they could get the bank to respond.

Don't look at offer expiration dates?

Now I know the banks have mountains of paperwork these days between foreclosures that need listed, late mortgages that are going to sale, restructures, refinances, short sales, etc., etc., etc. I don't envy them at all. But that doesn't give them a right to make up their own rules as they go along!

My attorney friends tell me the banks don't want the houses - they would prefer to collect the money they loaned for the house instead. Well here is a perfectly good offer on one of the houses they don't want - and they have let the offer expire.

Unfortunately, my buyer really wants the house, so there's little we can do but wait. Withdrawing the offer won't get us the house, making a new offer will start the clock ticking all over again, and walking away won't get us the house. So we wait.

And wait.


And wait.

Posted by

Stephanie Davis REALTOR® ABR, GRI, SFR
© Carolina One Real Estate


Serving Goose Creek and the Greater Charleston, SC area


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Tom Boos
Sine & Monaghan Realtors, Real Living - Grosse Pointe Farms, MI
Providing the very best of service to Sellers and

The Banks are always "suspending" the rules in their attempts to sell REO.  All you can do is play their game.  Hurry up and wait.

Apr 07, 2009 04:47 AM #1
June Tassillo
Owner/Broker RE/MAX Elite Realty - Franklin, NC
Let me help you with the next phase of your life!

I am in a similar situation but its a short sale.  We were told that we would have some sort of communication by last Friday and not to call any sooner then that.  We called Fri, Mon, and now its Tues.  We played by their rules and they break there own that they make up as they go along.  You would think they would HIRE some people to take the load off them and there is plenty of people without a job that would love to work until they get caught up.  I feel right along with you.

Apr 07, 2009 04:51 AM #2
Ron Bridges
ERA Wilder Realty, Inc. - Sumter, SC

Stephanie, I learned with working with my REOs the amount of red tape the offer has to pass through. The bank agent I was working with was not the one to make the decision but the bank had sold the mortgages to investors and the investors had to be contacted and accept or not.  Sometimes it would take several days to get a response back.  Frustrating but just like the government, the person that makes the decisions is layers and layers back in the process.

Apr 07, 2009 01:11 PM #3
Thesa Chambers
Fred Real Estate Group - Bend, OR
Principal Broker - Licensed in Oregon

fair warning - I recently waited 2 weeks - but usually it is just a couple days

Apr 07, 2009 07:39 PM #4
Stephanie Davis
The Boulevard Company - Charleston, SC
Broker Associate and REALTOR®

Tom - Ugh. That's the truth. As long as they get away with it I'm sure they'll do it.

June - I agree. It seems like they have hired a few more people but they must still need more. In one short sale where I represented the buyer we wrote an amendment to the contract that formally extended the expiration of the offer 30 more days. When that date came close, my buyer was ready to walk so we wrote another amendment that formally withdrew our offer as of the expiration date. The bank met our deadline! Not sure if it was coincidence, but it seemed to work. It made us feel like we had some control, anyway.

Ron - I understand there's a lot of red tape but it seems to me that if the bank looks at a house long enough to set a list price for the market, they've looked at it long enough and talked with their investors about a bottom line and lowest price they will accept.

Thesa - Right after I wrote this blog the bank responded with their counter offer. So we waited 7 days. Now we're going to counter offer back - they threw way too much money at us for closing costs - hope it's not another 7 days before we hear something again.

Apr 08, 2009 02:39 AM #5
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Stephanie Davis

Broker Associate and REALTOR®
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