Settlements-They Aren't Supposed To Be A Game of Musical Chairs

By
Real Estate Agent with Integrity Real Estate Group

Once upon a time in the real estate world, a contract specified a settlement time and everyone was there ready to go.  Now it seems the settlement date in the contract is just a mere suggestion of when settlement might occur.

It seems to be easiest to point the finger at the lenders as they are the one's holding the documents but quite honestly there could be enough finger pointing go in all directions.  Documents that aren't submitted in a timely manner, documents that mysteriously disappear, last minute conditions added by the underwriter, unfinished inspection items, who can sort it all out.

In the end though the music has to stop and everyone must be seated.  My calendar this week started with all my appointments set around 5 settlements perfectly scheduled.  It's only Wednesday and every one of them so far has shifted.  Some by hours and some by days.  Honestly I'm beginning to wonder what's the point of keeping a calendar.  Real estate these days does not seem to be the industry for anyone who likes to keep their life in order.. 

Oh well at least this is a "long" weekend and what possibly could go wrong on a National Holiday?



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If you are interested in learning more about the Northern Virginia Real Estate market including Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax and Prince William Counties give Cindy Jones and Integrity Real Estate Group a call at 703-346-2213.

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Rainmaker
601,487
Donne Knudsen
Los Angeles & Ventura Counties in CA - Simi Valley, CA
CalState Realty Services

"Honestly I'm beginning to wonder what's the point of keeping a calendar.  Real estate these days does not seem to be the industry for anyone who likes to keep their life in order.. "

ROTFL

Neither is mortgage lending!  I have long since learned to just "roll with the changes".  Hope the rest of your week goes well.  :)

Jun 29, 2011 11:57 AM #1
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Anna Banana Kruchten Broker/Owner, CRB, CRS
Phoenix Property Shoppe - Phoenix, AZ
602-380-4886

HaHa Ha.....you are either trying to be very funny (which you are) are delusional!!!     My life hasn't been in order since the whole melt down started......one wild ride after another.  And the good news is most of us have gotten pretty good at staying on the horse and navigating through some really crazy transaction.   Ride on Sista!!

Jun 29, 2011 12:39 PM #2
Rainmaker
3,249,704
Lou Ludwig
Ludwig & Associates - Boca Raton, FL
Designations Earned CRB, CRS, CIPS, GRI, SRES, TRC

Cindy

From now on just schedule everything under whatever.

Good luck and success.

Lou Ludwig

Jun 29, 2011 12:52 PM #3
Rainmaker
767,665
Jeff Pearl
RE/MAX Distinctive / LIC in VA - Lovettsville, VA
Full Service Full Time Realtor

I had to extend closing date twice on last settlement. You're right, seems like no one including the title companies care about the settlemet date anymore. I've been planning on writing a blog about that but haven't gotten to it yet.

Jun 29, 2011 12:57 PM #4
Rainer
372,583
Tish Lloyd
BlueCoast Realty Corporation - Wilmington, NC
Broker - Wilmington NC and Surrounding Beaches

Musical chairs, indeed!  I'm with you -- seems the entire point of keeping a calender these days is more like making a "wish list"!  Hope your week ends on a high note and that your weekend is a blast!

Jun 29, 2011 01:02 PM #5
Rainmaker
601,487
Donne Knudsen
Los Angeles & Ventura Counties in CA - Simi Valley, CA
CalState Realty Services

Cindy - For what's it's worth, closing dates are always a priority with me.  However, like you said, it's not always the buyers lenders fault when a closing date gets missed.  I have an escrow right now (REO) where I had a 45day escrow and it took the REO bank two weeks to get the fully executed sales contract to us.  SERIOUSLY!!!

Needless to say, I no longer had a 45day escrow to close a CalSTRS loan.  This REO has a $100 a day per diem for everyday we're late and you bet your @$$ that my borrowers Realtor is going to dispute that nonsense and throw it back into their face that it took 14 days for them to just get the fully executed sales contract back to us.

Don't even get me started on my other escrow where the buyers and sellers spent 10days haggling back and forth with each other over repair requests and my borrower refused to authorize me to order the appraisal until the seller signed off on some of the repair items.  AAARRRGGGHHH!!!

Jun 29, 2011 01:10 PM #6
Rainmaker
421,184
Michelle Francis
Tim Francis Realty LLC - Atlanta, GA
Realtor, Buckhead Atlanta Homes for Sale & Lease

Cindy, 

I agree, especially frustrating.  What annoys me the most is when folks just don't care who are handling the closing - (more of an issue with foreclosures where closing attorney's are specified by the banks.). 

Hang in there!

All the best, Michelle

Jun 29, 2011 02:48 PM #7
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Donne-I'm moving what I can and trying to keep a smile on my face.

Jun 29, 2011 11:50 PM #8
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Anna-the only thing I don't like is getting all the way to the settlement company and THEN discovering we aren't ready to close.  Hate the waste of gas and the time.  Otherwise it's roll on roll on roll on.

Jun 29, 2011 11:51 PM #9
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Lou-good idea.  Remembered late last night about another appointment today that conflicts now with one of the rescheduled closings.  Oh fun.

Jun 29, 2011 11:52 PM #10
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Jeff-look forward to seeing your post.  It's a wild world and we just have to roll with it if we can.

Jun 29, 2011 11:53 PM #11
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Tish-I'd prefer my calendar to be real as there are often paychecks associated with those appointments :-)

Jun 29, 2011 11:54 PM #12
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Donne-no it isn't always the lender.  Out of my delayed transactions this week one is a lender related problem.  The rest are a combination of issues that should have been worked out long before we were headed to the closing table.

Jun 29, 2011 11:56 PM #13
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Michelle-most of the settlement companies seem to care but there hands are tied if they don't have documents or the parties to the contract are in a dispute.  Then all they can do is sit back and wait.

Jun 29, 2011 11:57 PM #14
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Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

I certainly understand this frustration of shifting settlement dates and times.  And it always seems to be when you have mutiple settlements in a week.

Jun 30, 2011 03:36 AM #15
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Chris Ann-I've managed to get 4 out of 5 done this week, though none of them happened when they were supposed to.

Jul 01, 2011 12:34 AM #16
Rainmaker
401,574
Gwen Banta
Sotheby's International Realty - Los Angeles, CA

Cindy, as we all know, closing is a team effort. Everyone has to do his job and even help others if the team is to win. I am sure that you always do your job while picking up the slack of those around you as well. That's when the frustration becomes even greater. Recently I had a short sale deal where the bank waited to acknowledge receiving the last piece of paperwork needed for final approval of a deal where all bank terms and counters had already been signed off on by the buyer and received by the bank. (It was a correction on a buyer's middle initial on one document, which was amended and returned in less than 20 minutes.) When they finally gave acknowledgment and approval THREE WEEKS LATER, they gave us eight days to close! Eight days with a loan contingency! It seems those who cause the delays are always the most demanding!

Jul 03, 2011 06:35 AM #17
Rainmaker
423,701
Rodney Mason
Guaranteed Rate NMLS# 2611 - Atlanta, GA
VP of Mortgage Lending - AL, FL, GA, SC, & TN

Since late 2007/early 2008, real estate closing dates have in fact been more difficult to meet.  That is when tighter underwriting standards were put into place.  Those new guidelines becamethe industry standard and not just that of a few lenders.  With all of the extra verifications being done today, closings just take more time.  Unfortunately, many agents are still writing closing dates without this being factored in. 

The same holds true with asset managers on REO properties.  When you add in that the fact that the attorney needs the closing package 3 days in advance on REO properties, that makes it even tighter.  Its great to see an agent recognize that fact that the blame for missed closing dates does not solely lie with the lender, rather that it's just easier to blame us.

 

Jul 03, 2011 11:56 AM #18
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