Life in the Short Sale lane!

Real Estate Agent with Homestar Real Estate

Well I gotta say that this market is surely shaping up to be a whirlwind! Besides listing "Short Sales" how many of you are writing offers up on "short sales". I tell you I've been in this business a long time so i really don't need the practice any more!LOL Yeah, I guess when you do enough of these types of sales you know what to expect, but when I go to write an offer on a property that my clients want, I feel as though someone is scratching a chalkboard with nails when the listing agent on that property indicates she is gonna send in "ALL" offers to the bank. I'm like aren't you only gonna send the best one, "Oh no they want all of them".  Well how many is that, oh TEN.....Okay is it just me or do other people feel that you give these Loss mitagators multiple choices and we've lost the war! I really can't beleive with all the classes available to us a agents that we still have agents that don't know how to do short sales ..... I guess I'm old fashioned but I feel we need to know how to do our job, so take some time to learn. The market is changing fast and we have to adapt with it. I use short sale genius and they are wonderful! The software alone is worth it, to keep track. I've recently become an Ambassador for Helping a Million Homeowners. My goal is to help these homeowners leave the home they have been living in with dignity. Come on people we are the professionals! I take my commitment to my clients seriously. Yeah . it's alittle crazy at times but I love it! when everything works out and they are released of that burden, come on, that's when we look at why wer'e doing what we do and SMILE!!

Hey everyone, Have an awesome day!!!  

Posted by

Anna Marie Dalbey, CRS, SFR, CHS

Certified Residential Specialist

Homestar Real Estate

601 E. Florida Ave.,Hemet, CA 92543

951-712-6074   EMail-


Comments (44)

Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

AnnaMarie:  I couldn't agree with you more.  Agents that send multiple offers are the ones that are clogging the short sale approval system.  The negotiators don't know our local markets.  They don't know which offer is solid in terms of appraisal.  Agents are only shooting ourselves in the foot when they do this.  And I'm sure they are the same agents that get P.O.'ed when buyers write multiple offers on multiple short sales and wait to see which one gets accepted.

Sep 18, 2009 03:30 AM
Gene Riemenschneider
Home Point Real Estate - Brentwood, CA
Turning Houses into Homes

There is some fraud going on in the Short Sale market.  You probably do not have to send in all the offers,the problem is sometimes the best possible offers are not sent in.

Sep 18, 2009 04:19 AM

Ann Marie, I do get frustrated by short sale listing agents that do not seem to know the difference between an offer and a contract.  They treat their listing as if it is bank owned and forward all the offers to the lender for their decision. It is not the lenders house to sell! Since the seller does not sign any of the offers the lender is stuck with a bunch of expired offers! 

One contract executed by both the buyer and seller is what should be sent to the lender. The listing agent should hold onto the executed back up offers and keep all potential buyers up to date with the progress of the short sale and inform them when they have moved up in the list if a potential buyer drops out. If the bank finally approves the short sale contract...great! If they approve the short sale but counter to a higher price, then original buyer should have first shot of meeting the higher price and if they back out of the offer, then the listing agent should go to the back up offers in list order.

It is a tiresome but necessary task now that I have to call each short sale listing I plan on showing to find out how the agent proceeds with their short sale. So many of them do it incorrectly. It is really sad, because it's hard enough having a short sale go through when everything is done correctly. And the poor sellers who have the unknowledgable short sale listing agent are stuck with their home listed as active for many months with continuous interruptions in their life with all the showings. Whereas if their listing agent handled offers properly, within a matter of days or weeks they could be in contract along with back ups waiting for bank approval and cease having any further showings. That would cut down some of the stress in what is already a traumatic enough event in their life.

Sep 18, 2009 07:44 AM
Miriam Llarena

Upon submitting an offer to a Seller, how can you be sure that your offer has actualy been sent to the Seller's Lender?  As one of the comments to your post states, there is fraud in the Short Sale market and in many cases, the Buyer's agents have no way of communicating directly with the Lender that is supposed to be reviewing your offer.  Is there any real way of confirming this to your Buyer?

Sep 18, 2009 07:56 AM
Frank Knippenberg

Miriam - The listing agent or a 3rd party negotiator hired by the homeowner or listing agent should be in direct communication with the bank in a short sale.    They are responsible for communicating the accepted offer to the bank.    I have never been part of a short sale situation when the homeowner was the one communicating with the bank.  

Sep 18, 2009 08:32 AM
Jirius Isaac
Isaac Real Estate &TriStar Mortgage - Kenmore, WA
Real Estate & loans in Kenmore, WA

One reasonalble offer goes to the bank.  If the listing agent is doing it any other way, I will advise by client that it will probably be a waste of time.  Any other offers should go in line, and only be considered if the initial buyer does not agree to the banks price.  Let's keep it simple, everyone.  We are helping our clients here, not the banks!

Sep 18, 2009 09:03 AM
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

When I wake up from a short sale nightmare, I repeat to myself, Code of Ethics, Code of Ethics. If only those Realtors who don't know what they are doing on short sales would not sleepwalk through that education.

Sep 18, 2009 12:40 PM
Mike Henderson
Your complete source for buying HUD homes - Littleton, CO
HUD Home Hub - 303-949-5848

On the buyers side the most important thing you can do is to find out the qualifications of the listing agent and see if they know what the hell they are doing.

Sep 18, 2009 03:57 PM
Keisha Hosea-
KASI Homes - Chino Hills, CA
Real Estate Solutions For Real People

Ah yes...the long and tedious road of a short sale. For agents who know the ropes, these transactions can go relatively smooth albeit slow. But OMG if you get with an agent who is not skilled in short sales. YIKES!

Sep 18, 2009 04:08 PM
Mark Velasco
Sharpstone Commercial - Whittier, CA
Top Producing COMMERCIAL Team 30+ years experience

Yeah Anna Marie. I have an "Agent" still trying to figure out the short sale process. It has been 6 months since we made that offer! I would withdraw it, however, my clients love the home. They are still shopping though.

Sep 18, 2009 05:35 PM
Mike Warfel
Mike & Rita Warfel Real Estate LLC - Avoca, MI
Associate Broker

We are still working for the Seller (home owner) not the bank, that is the point it is a Pre-Foreclosure listing. If we do our jobs by selecting the first best offer, have the seller sign and send it to the bank we can keep all the players in their traditional rolls. Do not let the bank do the Realtor's job, we select the best offer and negotiate with the bank, we do not just ask the bank what do you want to do. Continue to help families during these troubling and financially trying times.

Sep 19, 2009 12:22 AM
Ginger Moore
Wilkinson & Associates Realty - Gastonia, NC

Hi Anna Marie,  Great post!   Yes, it seems short sales are getting more prevalant.. Want to learn all I can on these. congrats on  feature post!

Sep 19, 2009 03:27 AM
Tatyana Sturm
Exit Realty DTC - Aurora, CO
Denver Realtor, GRI, Denver/ Aurora CO Relocation

Usually most banks will only look at one offer a time, so when an agent tells me that on a short sale, depending on the bank, most of the time it is not true

Sep 19, 2009 07:13 AM
Bob E. Gill RE/max Communities Marietta,Ga

I wonder why anyone would allow the banks to control thier business.

Ok I know , iknow. What the heck am I talking about ??

Well why do you waste your time & your buyer's time dealing with this multiple offer

scam ?The seller is already a victim in this scenerio,I don't believe the buyer & the

agent also need to be as well.

The Bank will choose $$ over terms every time & reduce Your commision as well.

While your waiting 90 to 180 days, your buyer ,is missing a lot of good opertunities.

I wish all of you success & happiness. I chose not to work for the Banks, but for my

Client & my business.

Bob E.


Sep 19, 2009 08:32 AM
Bob E. Gill RE/max Communities Marietta,Ga

I wonder why anyone would allow the banks to control thier business.

Ok I know , iknow. What the heck am I talking about ??

Well why do you waste your time & your buyer's time dealing with this multiple offer

scam ?The seller is already a victim in this scenerio,I don't believe the buyer & the

agent also need to be as well.

The Bank will choose $$ over terms every time & reduce Your commision as well.

While your waiting 90 to 180 days, your buyer ,is missing a lot of good opertunities.

I wish all of you success & happiness. I chose not to work for the Banks, but for my

Client & my business.

Bob E.


Sep 19, 2009 08:32 AM
Kathie Burby
Coldwell Banker Mother Lode Real Estate - Sonora, CA
REALTOR, SFR, Tuolumne County Real Estate Guide

AnnaMarie - Great post and congrats on the feature. I agree that agents who are unfamiliar with SS should NOT do them. I have seen many cases where the listing agent did not understand the SS process and the home ended up in foreclosure. There were offers but if the listing agent is completely clueless on the SS process the buyers end up walking and the seller is left holding the bag.

Ambassador for Helping a Million Homeowners! How in the world did you do that? That is an incredible number!

Sep 19, 2009 09:02 AM
Christopher Webster
EXP Realty, LLC - Columbia, SC
Columbia South Carolina Real Estate For Sale

Banks are already overwhelmed and sending offers in numbered order from time received is the best way. I help the seller on each offer as it comes in by having them counter to a realistic number and then we let other Agent know that their offer is Primary, 1st backup and so on. You must disclose them as a backup as like any other contingency. #1 RULE is to put it in writing!

Sep 19, 2009 04:50 PM
Lyn Sims
Schaumburg, IL
Schaumburg Real Estate Agent Retired

Somone brought up a good point about it's not the banks home 'yet' to sell so why are you sending multiple offers to them? Where's the seller?

Sep 22, 2009 04:46 AM
Ray Snook
Code 3 Realty - El Dorado Hills, CA

Has anyone seen the practice of placing a short sale listing in the MLS and then stating in the Agent Remarks "Seller does not want any showings" ? I tried unsuccessfully to take my buyers on several occasions to this listing only to be rebuffed by the agent or had my voicemails ignored. It was on the MLS for 35 days as Active short sale and then a few days ago it went contingent! How can an agent and seller accept an offer and be acting in the interest of the seller's lender when they have consistently refused to show the property?Has the agent acted in the interest of the bank by not allowing other agents to bring their clients and so make offers? Did the agent double end by accepting sign calls only? This stinks in my opinion but I am seeing it quite frequently especially in areas where demand is high - List the house and stop your competition from bringing a buyer with an offer higher than your clients - great sales tactic!

Sep 24, 2009 01:40 PM
Ray Snook
Code 3 Realty - El Dorado Hills, CA

I am actually horrified that many agents don't actually know the difference between a short sale and an reo sale.

If you don't know that your fiduciary duty is to the seller and that the banks approval is just a contingency then why on earth are you even listing the house? I have even heard of agents asking the seller to sign all the offers and send them to the bank - are they expecting the seller to sell the house multiple times to different people?

The most sensible way to handle it is to state a period of time in which you as the listing agent will accept offers for your sellers review. At the end of that time the agent guides the seller on the most appropriate offer to submit for approval by the bank, pick one and seller signs it and let's the successful offeree know, and the offer goes to the lender(s) in what is known as a "short sale package" which consists of hardship letter, bank statements, tax returns etc as proof that the seller is unable to pay the mortgage but  here is a buyer ready to take the property at this price. The status on MLS changes to Short Sale Contingent (in California) and other offers are placed in backup in the order they were submitted.

 It is quite common now for short sale listing agents to only accept offers where the deposit check is cashed and placed into escrow. When this happens it is a good idea to ask the listing agent to change the status to pending on MLS as a sign of good faith. It is also vital as a listing agent to keep the buyer and the buyers agent involved by supplying them with regular updates on progress. Most short sales fall apart because the listing agent doesnt bother to do this and the buyers lose interest.


It ain't rocket science! :-)

Sep 24, 2009 03:45 PM