Short Sale Tips from Richmond VA. None of these tips are exact, every lending institution is different. Here are a few tips I have learned over the past few years as a Short Sale Agent in Richmond, Virginia.
When I meet with potential short sale client I ask "Why do you want to short sell?", "What do you know about the short sale process?" "Are you patient?" "Are you ready for a few headaches?" These questions tend to break the ice and allow you to prepare them for what to expect.
Then I ask..."How did you end up with me at the kitchen table?" I am direct and this information is necessary. When working on a Short Sale you need honest answers, you need to know if it is a divorce, failed business, medical bills, job loss, etc. The facts will determine if your sellers have a hardship the bank may consider. The specific details will be used to write the hardship letter. Short Sales are Hard Work! You want to know upfront if they are willing to help you, help them.
At the initial meeting I ask the seller to provide copies of all documents the lender may need:
- Authorization from Borrower/Seller (some lenders require their own form and some have a dedicated fax number for authorizations)
- Financial Information Form (I use a generic form)
- Copy of Mortgage Coupon(s)
- Ask if they have PMI (Very important)
- Copy HOA Coupon for HOA (if any)
- Copy of Paid or Delinquent Property Tax Statement
- Copy of last 2 months Pay Stubs or Profit and Loss Statement, if you are self employed
- Copy of last 2 months Bank Account Statements (checking, savings and stocks)
- Copy of two years Tax Returns (look over these...make sure nothing stands out, the banks will find it)
- Initial draft of Hardship letter
As soon as we receive a contract I work on:
- Agent Cover Letter I use BOLD TYPE and CAPS for Key facts. I include: the current market, the sellers situation, how many days on market, the number of showings, the feedback from showings...Keep it to ONE PAGE)
- Listing Agreement
- MLS Print Out
- Purchase Contract
- Pre- Approval
- Copy of Deposit
- Updated CMA supporting the listing price
- Copy any supporting documentation for value (newspaper articles, graphs, pictures etc)
- Settlement statement prepared at offer price
- Any other information that will help the case
When I send the package to the lender
- Send the entire package. (Do not send until you have everything!)
- Put labels on each page, in order with the sellers last name and loan number
Short Sale Tips :
- The Lender will order a BPO (Broker Price Opinion.) This BPO will be completed by a real estate agent. The agent will call you or the seller to get access to the property. They are being paid a minimal fee ($50.00 to $150.00) I even know agents in Richmond that do BPO's for free, they are promised an opportunity to get future REO listings. It is in your best interest to help this BPO agent. Make their job easy; provide them a copy of the contract, comparable properties, your CMA, pictures, any important facts...Meet them at the property if you can.
- I have the sellers attorney order payoffs, verify taxes and additional liens
- I recommend the purchaser to use the seller's attorney.
- Keep marketing the home (keep a list of potential back up offers.)
- Keep the buyer's agent informed.
Short Sale Tips:
- Be nice
- Smile (yes, I know they can't see you) make simple conversation...while they are looking up the account.
- Keep in mind, the bank representatives are getting yelled at most of the day. Be the highlight of their day, they may just help you. Some of them want to help.
- Most of the time they have no ability to fix your problem. Ask for what you need, ask if who can help you? Ask what other departments exist? If you don't like what they have to say...Call back! You will get someone else and they might know more.
- Write down the number you called, the time you called, brief description of conversation, any dates you were given, what the next step is, when you should call again, if they have set a foreclosure date, etc.
- Every time you speak to the Lender ask for:
Bank of America Short Sale Tips (I have done so many...they get their own category.)
- Send you authorization to the special authorization number (1-888-491-4947 or 805-520-5019)
- Send it again!
- It will take 5 to 7 business days to scan and load to the seller's account
- When they can't find it...ask them the to look in the file rolodex
- If they still can't find it ask them to try and add you to the account...
- If they still can't find it...ask if you can conference call the seller and get them to allow B of A to speak to you (This approval will only be good for that call)
Equator is new automated system Bank of America using for Short Sales. This system is a step in the right direction .
Email sent to sellers:
Dear Mr. Smith
Welcome to the Bank of America short sale processing system. Please go to www.BankofAmerica.com/ShortSale and enter your user name and password to begin.
*side note: The automated email Bank of America sends the seller to use is incorrect.
Direct them here https://shortsale.bankofamerica.com/
Short Sale Tips to be continued....This list is getting long. Stay tuned for Short Sale Tips Part 2
Thank you for reading & Happy Short Selling!