Incompetence never ceases to amaze me...

Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty







It has been quite a while since I have last posted a blog on AR (and unfortunately this posting is also a negative one), but as I sit here on a rainy Easter Sunday I couldn't help but think about how some people can be so incompetent in regards to their profession. Don't get me wrong because I know I am not perfect... nobody is, but there should be a law requiring EVERYBODY who is employed or in business for themselves to look in the mirror once a day and ask, "can I really do the job I am being paid to do"? If that were to happen and the majority of people actually remained honest with themselves, we just might slash the incompetence rate to at least 50% of the working population :-)

I have an 18 lot detached townhouse development that I am listing by Martha Lake and I must say we have had our share of "interesting" situations in 5 months of running the site. For example, we have not 1 but 2 different mortgage brokers who each had buyers come to mutual acceptance on 1/13/09 (two different lots though). One of them missed TWO closing dates before finally recording a week ago. The other has missed THREE closing dates and still has not closed to this day (they claim it will close on Tuesday now). Daily fees are accruing obviously, but what I STILL cannot figure out is how it takes almost 3 MONTHS to close 2 slam dunk buyers with good credit, reasonable dti's and funds to close?!? I have never encountered such incompetent mortgage brokers and can only imagine how frustrating it must be for their buyers! To make a long story short, they have no clue what they are doing and have no business in the mortgage industry. There are plenty of good mortgage brokers out there so I am still trying to figure out why I always encounter the worthless ones.

I apologize for only giving you an elevator speech worth of details due to the length of the story, but we're human which means we're impatient and hate long rambling blog posts (or maybe that's just me :-) (kidding)

Basically we were given every excuse in the book, but my personal favorite was "the file has to wait in a long line because all the refi's are backing up the purchases". 

I am sure all you mortgage brokers out there know the validity of that statement ;-)

Finally, Robert I. Sutton from Business Week wrote a recent article about "The Peter Principle" (no pun intended). For those of you that have never heard of it, I suggest you look it up. Here is a little snip from the article that I couldn't help but share:

"The Peter Principle made us laugh, but it also made us aware of the importance of simple competence — and of how elusive it could be. When people do their jobs well, Dr. Peter argued, society can't leave well enough alone. We ask for more and more until we ask too much. Then these individuals — promoted to positions in which they are doomed to fail — start using a bag of tricks to mask their incompetence. They distract us from their crummy work with giant desks, replace action with incomprehensible acronyms, blame others for failure, cheat to create the illusion of progress."


On a funnier note (if you don't mind long rambling blog posts ;-) the model home for this same development was broken into last Friday night. The suspects some how retrieved the key from the key box (which is missing) and had free roam in our FULLY FURNISHED & STAGED model home. No damage or vandalism was done. All that was stolen was an inexpensive mirror, an inexpensive picture and a coffee pot. Not the expensive appliances or furniture or various other staging items throughout the 2,335 sq ft home. Apparently there have been model homes recently stripped of EVERYTHING and trashed, yet we get taken for a mirror, picture and coffee pot??? Does that not sound stupid to anybody else but me??? That's even worse than the mystery thief who dug up two matching plants from our entrance right before Christmas. Recession or not, that's just pathetic!


Comments (8)

Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573
Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker

Billy Joel sang, "I'm only human, I'm supposed to make mistakes".

Apr 12, 2009 02:52 PM
Bob Foster
Century 21 Lanthorn R. E. Ltd. Belleville, Ontario - Belleville, ON

Hi Peter. I wish those brokers could come on AR and tell us what was going on.

As for the thieves ... maybe they looked in the mirror and found out they weren't very competent, so they stuck the small things they could handle?

Apr 12, 2009 02:54 PM
Peter Mann
Keller Williams Realty - Bellevue, WA
Peter Mann Seattle-Bellevue Real Estate Agent

Very true, but if you are making the same mistake over and over, should you not reconsider your profession?

Apr 12, 2009 02:56 PM
Peter Mann
Keller Williams Realty - Bellevue, WA
Peter Mann Seattle-Bellevue Real Estate Agent

BOB: I figured it was about 1-2am when they broke in. That's pretty darn early in the morning so coffee must have sounded good :-) As for the mirror and the picture, those must have been the only items that matched their living room.

Apr 12, 2009 02:59 PM
Tucson Real Estate Experts Anne McKechnie
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Tucson, AZ
Previews Property Specialist

Hi Peter, I totally understand. However, they may have some seems that Lenders currently do not care about missing closing dates....they are being extremely nit picky...I just had  someone with great credit who is still waiting for her three week late closing with a large mortgage company that has always closed on time...I have another that is also three weeks late with a different company. I think it may be due to underwriters nit picking the files, and then putting them back  on the bottom of the stack.

Apr 12, 2009 03:39 PM
Peter Mann
Keller Williams Realty - Bellevue, WA
Peter Mann Seattle-Bellevue Real Estate Agent

I sure hope so in your clients case :-) I think my situation is a little different considering the people I am having to deal with.

I am also aware of picky underwriting as it did not just start yesterday :-) Even with underwriters picking apart every deal and then going through the pieces with a microscope, tough deals can still be closed in 45 days. The one deal I referred to in my post that has yet to close will be 3 MONTHS and still counting as of tomorrow. This isn't the first time this guy has dropped the ball either (or the second).


Apr 12, 2009 04:40 PM

Because I am a Mortgage Broker and I realize how difficult it is to deal with banks THESE DAYS, I have to say it may not be the Mortgage Brokers fault WE DO TAKE THE FALL for everyone elses mistakes. Most bank are down to skeleton crews who may or may not have a job tomorrow so THEY DON'T CARE if a loan closes or NOT. I have been lied to by banks in the past few months I have had banks give me a Clear to close and then NEVER SEND DOCUMENTS to the lawyer. I have had banks give me a CLEAR TO CLOSE for weeks before finally admitting they lost thier wharehouse line and can no longer lend. So i do agree like nay job there are many people in Mortgages that shouldn't be BUT The banks are making it more difficult everyday. Myself I have learned stay with the big lenders cause the smaller ones are dropping like flies but even the Big lenders have a 3-4 week tirnaround time NO MATTER WHAT. A loan 9 months ago that would take a week nor takes 5 weeks, It's torture


Apr 13, 2009 01:39 AM
Peter Mann
Keller Williams Realty - Bellevue, WA
Peter Mann Seattle-Bellevue Real Estate Agent

KEVIN: I appreciate your comment as with the rest of the folks that have recently commented on this post. I know first hand what it is like to be a mortgage broker as I originated loans for YEARS before switching full time into real estate. Times were obvioulsy different when I was in the mortgage business, but the formula remains the same. As you stated, deals that would normally take a week are now taking 5 weeks which is a 35 day close. 30-35 day closes are typical right now as they have always been with the BIG LENDERS as you also stated. As I said in my response above your reply, the tough deals can still be closed in 45 days. After reading your response, it appears that you AGREE with me. Now keep in mind that we are talking about TOUGH deals here that can still be closed in under 45 days. Why would slam dunk deals take 90+ days??? That is unacceptable! I wish I could tell you who they are and what they did (or didn't do), but at this time it would not be wise of me to start listing names and companies as they have done nothing ILLEGAL to my knowledge. 

Again, I said in my post that there are plenty of GOOD mortgage brokers out there that are still closing deals on time. I am not taking shots at ALL mortgage brokers, just two in particular that have no business in the lending industry.

Apr 13, 2009 03:33 AM