Short sales and insolvency. Where is the compassion in all of this?

By
Real Estate Agent with Atlanta Communities 286102

Okay, so here's the scenario.....

Imagine that you are a seller and you lost your job from a layoff about a year ago.  You made house payments until your family's savings was depleted. You went on many interviews but never could land a new position.  Then, to add insult to injury, you were involved in an auto accident and now have difficulty getting around; both you and your spouse.  You've been in constant contact with your lender and they suggested that you short sale your home.  BTW, you are at retirement age.  You've lost everything.  The only thing you have left are your possessions and you really aren't sure where you will go or how you will pay for it once you get there.

So, you gradually pack your items to prepare for the move all the while, showing your home to prospective buyers that are keen on getting a deal.  You know that you paid 30% more than the list price for this home that you loved so much when you purchased it.  This home was supposed to have seen you through your retirement.  Your world has dissolved before you.  You lose more sleep every night while you count every penny that you can scrape together to put into your gas tank each day.  Yes, you are depressed and find it difficult to even eat or awaken each day. 

Along comes an agent that shows his buyer your home for the second time.  You and your spouse leave for each showing though very difficult considering your health.  Looks like they may put in an offer.  Your agent instructs the selling agent that this is an as-is transaction and has also clearly stated on the listing that whatever the commission the bank honors, will be split.  The sale is contingent upon bank approval. 

So here comes the offer.  The offer asks for $15,000 less than the bargain price of the property plus closing costs.  The buyer is also asking for a survey, a septic cleaning, a home warranty, a full-blown pest treatment by a specific company, all pest-related damages to be repaired as determined by an inspection,  $2000 in any FHA required repairs, plus 30 days due diligence.  The agent also submits commission instructions to the closing attorney for 3% to each party for your agent to sign.  Oh, one last thing....the buyer wants your washer and dryer, your refrigerator, and a hot tub that is packed in the basement that actually belongs to someone else.  No mention of a short sale stip, no as-is clause.

Please, someone help me understand how agents can submit offers like this with a clear conscience.  Do they not realize that sellers that are actually going through the motions of trying to execute a short sale are still involved in the game and that they care?  Wouldn't they have moved out in the middle of the night unless they are actually trying to do the right thing? The sellers have lost everything and you want their stuff too?!

Perhaps agents need to watch the videos that we saw in CDPE class of the families being physically removed from their homes. People, this stuff is real!  This is a sad time. Can you please try and make this horrible circumstance, less horrible?  This is much more than another commission check or opportunity to engage in a hard negotiation.  

Sorry for the rant!   

 

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Ambassador
2,285,378
MichelleCherie Carr Crowe Just Call...408-252-8900
Get Results Team...Just Call (408) 252-8900! . DRE #00901962 . Licensed to Sell since 1985 . Altas Realty - San Jose, CA
Family Helping Families Buy & Sell Homes 40+ Years

So true. I also notice the majority of the agents putting in offers like this have been licensed less than 2 years-they just don't have the exoerience to realize the reality about what goes around comes around.

Jun 27, 2010 04:28 PM #1
Rainer
232,345
Sara Woolford & Steve Golson, ALHS
iTexas Realty Co. - San Antonio, TX

Hi Jana-

There is not point in making an offer that a Bank won't accept.  When a property is listed under the market, a smart Buyer will try to expedite the acceptance process and secure the property for themselves.  It's unfortunate that someone would ask foro so much that the Seller cannot provide - even if they wanted to - and that the Bank if truly unlikely to approve.

By the way, whatever is in the listing is the commission.  To write in a commission other than that stated, is a Code of Ethics violation and should be reported.

I'm sorry that you and your Sellers are having this unfortunate circumstance and wish them well in the future.

--Sara in San Antonio

Jun 27, 2010 04:33 PM #2
Rainmaker
449,963
Vickie McCartney
Maverick Realty - Owensboro, KY
Broker, Real Estate Agent Owensboro KY

Hi Jana~  I do not know how they can do it.  I know that I could not. This reality saddens my heart and makes me relieved I have not had to become involved in a short sale, and I hope I never have to. But, none of us are exempt!  I can not even begin to imagine the pain that these sellers are feeling.  Some people fail to realize that the tables could easily be turned and it could be them walking in those shoes.....

Jun 27, 2010 04:46 PM #3
Rainer
103,973
Valerie Baker
Exit Real Estate Professionals - Spokane, WA
Spokane Realtor

Jana, Kicking people who are down has never been acceptable in my world . . .it amazes me how many don't feel that way!   I was hoping that this depression (and it IS a depression for many people) would bring out the best in us, but it seems to have created a ruthless group, ever-ready to feed off the misery of others.

Jun 27, 2010 04:49 PM #4
Rainmaker
160,068
Linda Hinson
S & L Properties - Calabash, NC

I'm surprised you haven't received a post from some of the agents who frequently post that all is fair...too bad seller is in a bind...I represent the buyer.  I'm like Valerie; I have to live with myself; I couldn't do it.

Jun 27, 2010 04:54 PM #5
Rainer
11,693
Jana Bryant
Atlanta Communities - Woodstock, GA
Rick Steiner & Associates, CDPE

Well, I thought that this agent would have it together a bit better.  After all, he's been licensed for many, many more years than I.  I believe that I will attach a PDF document to my s.s. listings that illustrates clearly how to best submit offers and with the correct stip verbiage.

Thanks for all your comments.  I love this forum and I have met some really great agents on here that do the right thing!  

Jun 27, 2010 05:10 PM #6
Rainer
10,609
Scott Truesdell
Southern Trust Realty - Lexington, KY

Great "rant" Jana.  It's refreshing to see there are other compasionate agents out there.

-Scott

Jun 27, 2010 06:42 PM #7
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