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Countrywide: I can honestly say this is a first for me!

By
Real Estate Agent with RealEstateAdvisor.Pro

In February, I successfully completed and closed a short sale with Countrywide. The process was a nightmare and it took almost 6 months to get completed (many complicated issues on this one).

I represented the buyer and the seller in this transaction. Although I was able to keep it together, the buyer was frustrated by the time it closed. But, all is good now, they are happy with their purchase.

Now almost August, the new owner calls me today (6 months after he closed) FREEKING out. Why? Because he has a notice on the door that the home was just sold in Sherriff sale!

After the call from the new owner, I ran to the office. I pulled the file and reviewed everything...it was all fine.  I called Countrywide immediately.  After reviewing the documents with the person on the phone we discover the loss mitigation representative reversed a digit in the account number on the approval letter and closing instructions. OMG!!  So OK, how are we going to fix it!??

That loss mitigation representative and their boss no longer work at Countywide. The account we wired the money to is a Bank of America account (we closed right in the middle of the merger), and the person I had on the phone had no idea what to do. The highest person I could get to; the regional director also had no idea what happened and what to do about it. They told me they will start an investigation! WHAT DO I TELL THIS HOMEOWNER RIGHT NOW?

The moral of this story, and it is a true one, verify everything on your approval letters. Do not leave anything to chance! I have no idea how this is going to turn out, but it's a big mess!!

I can honestly say this is a first for me!

Good Luck!

Frank Wible

Evelyn Johnston
Friends & Neighbors Real Estate - Elkhart, IN
The People You Know, Like and Trust!

Oh man, oh man, oh man.  You a re in a mess alright. Our office had a similiar one.  We sold the property and a year later they were notified it was going to sheriff sale and they had to evacuate the home.  This one was with Chase Bank. We got it straightened out fortunately.  But the second year did the same thing.  Sheriff showed up told them it was up for sale and they had to evacuate.  This time the new owners hired a foreclosure attorney to take care of it, and so far so good.  No more visits from the Sheriff!

Sep 17, 2008 04:08 AM
Jennifer Horton
Trin Hong Real Estate Inc. - Novato, CA

Sheesh! I have about 6-7 short sales w/ Countrywide and it's been rough! I finally got one approved today after over 21 months... not days, months of work! Countrywide was so stupid to deny the first three offers on the property because of "insufficient funds" and I was finally able to get a new appraisal of the property since they wouldn't believe me on how much values had dropped since their first appraisal. I cannot even start to put my self in your shoes, I would be horrified if I got that phone call. The worst part is no one at the banks care enough to fix it. It's such a shame!!!!

 

Jennifer Horton

www.BeautifulHomesOfMarin.com

Sep 19, 2008 07:02 AM
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

I am shocked to read that this could happen. I guess we have to read and compare account numbers carefully and not just loan amounts.

Sep 19, 2008 11:03 PM
Laurie Mindnich
Centennial, CO

Where is the buyers lawyer in all of this?

Sep 21, 2008 05:14 AM
Frank Wible
RealEstateAdvisor.Pro - Apollo Beach, FL
Real Estate Services

Options Realty: In South Jersey lawyers are not used in many of our real estate transactions.

Sep 22, 2008 02:05 AM
Tony DeLuke
Markley Realty - Cuyahoga Falls, OH
ABR, GRI, SFR

Frank,

Any updates on this transaction? I have done two short sales in the past year. It's something that we have to deal with. Like you, I learned a lot very quickly. My last transaction was as a buyers agent only. The listing agent notified the second lender as requested but when I asked about the primary lender he told me that we didn't have to worry about them because being first in line they were going to get all their money. When the title called the first lender to get the final payoff figures they were informed that it went to foreclosure the day before. Well, since that would cost the first lender $3,000 the second lender had to bite the bullet for the cost. But the trickle down theory had the second lender asking us Realtors to take less commission, 4% instead of 5%. Well, since I did all my home work and the other Realtor did not I insisted on my 3% co-broke like what was offered. You just have to be as thorough as you can but even what happened to you could happen to us. Thanks for your post

Sep 22, 2008 04:45 AM
Tony DeLuke
Markley Realty - Cuyahoga Falls, OH
ABR, GRI, SFR

Frank,

Any updates on this transaction? I have done two short sales in the past year. It's something that we have to deal with. Like you, I learned a lot very quickly. My last transaction was as a buyers agent only. The listing agent notified the second lender as requested but when I asked about the primary lender he told me that we didn't have to worry about them because being first in line they were going to get all their money. When the title called the first lender to get the final payoff figures they were informed that it went to foreclosure the day before. Well, since that would cost the first lender $3,000 the second lender had to bite the bullet for the cost. But the trickle down theory had the second lender asking us Realtors to take less commission, 4% instead of 5%. Well, since I did all my home work and the other Realtor did not I insisted on my 3% co-broke like what was offered. You just have to be as thorough as you can but even what happened to you could happen to us. Thanks for your post

Sep 22, 2008 04:46 AM
Tony DeLuke
Markley Realty - Cuyahoga Falls, OH
ABR, GRI, SFR

Frank,

Any updates on this transaction? I have done two short sales in the past year. It's something that we have to deal with. Like you, I learned a lot very quickly. My last transaction was as a buyers agent only. The listing agent notified the second lender as requested but when I asked about the primary lender he told me that we didn't have to worry about them because being first in line they were going to get all their money. When the title called the first lender to get the final payoff figures they were informed that it went to foreclosure the day before. Well, since that would cost the first lender $3,000 the second lender had to bite the bullet for the cost. But the trickle down theory had the second lender asking us Realtors to take less commission, 4% instead of 5%. Well, since I did all my home work and the other Realtor did not I insisted on my 3% co-broke like what was offered. You just have to be as thorough as you can but even what happened to you could happen to us. Thanks for your post

Sep 22, 2008 04:46 AM
Steve Dibert
MFI-Miami - Fort Lauderdale, FL

Doing mortgage fraud investigating, I get people coming to me with stories like this all the time.  It's an internal Countrywide/BofA problem.  As long as the title work is correct, your clent is fine.  It's actually an easy fix for Countrywide.  The problem was you were talking to the wrong person and the wrong department. 

Sep 24, 2008 01:21 AM
Stephen Kappre
KW Hometown - Mantua, NJ
Helping You Home

Frank - wonderful story (for me to read that is ...) - Hope it turned out good in the end.  Steve Dilbert above me seems to think you're all good.  hope so. 

Sep 24, 2008 09:34 AM
Peter Carlseen
RE/MAX Clarity; Praecelsus Property Management - Chula Vista, CA

At first I thought that your post was that you finally got a short sale done with Countrywide (not the easiest bunch to get through).

Anytime I think that I may want to pursue short sales, I will just reference your post.

It seems improbable to me that people over there can be that stupid on accident.  Hope all went well.  I would be curious to know if everything worked out...

Sep 25, 2008 12:23 PM
Andrew Monaghan
The Monaghan Group - Glendale, AZ
CRS, GRI, EPro Associate Broker

Wow, keep up up with what is going on, this is crazy

 

Sep 27, 2008 05:14 AM
Tracy Royce
Short Sale Arizona, Arizona Short Sale Realtor - Phoenix, AZ
Royce of Real Estate - Short Sale Arizona

Oh gosh, what a mess! Keep us informed....we deal with CW all the time and have luckily not had anything like this!

But yes there seems to be a lot of turnover with them, keeping in mind most of the reps are probably from other industries and are just picking up jobs there to pay ends meet.

Keep us posted!

Tracy Venezia-Royce

Live Free Investment Group

602-957-7773

Tracy@livefreeinvestmentgroup.com

Jan 28, 2009 06:45 AM
Charles Fischer
Housing Market Realty - Merritt Island, FL
Professional Real Estate Services

Frank: if you have not already, have the title companies attorney get involved, they insured the title and should go to bat for you.  sorry to hear of your troubles Good Luck keep us posted!!

Feb 18, 2009 01:37 PM
Randy Tobbe
https://sscommander.infusionsoft.com/go/home/a153/ - Novi, MI

You have to love Countrywide these days there one of the worst banks to deal with. I'm not surprised that this happened its unfortunate for you and the the new home owner but if countrywide dose not get there act together there going into receivership.

Mar 12, 2009 06:36 AM
Alan Grizzle
Chestatee Real Estate - Dahlonega, GA
Full Time Realtor, Lifelong Resident of Dahlonega

I have not worked a short sale with Countrywide but I had a buyer make a offer in one of there homes. They rejected our offer and we did not go under contract. In less than two weeks they lowered the list price to below the offer we made and sold it for less. How crazy is that! How would you like to be a investor in Countrywide and have them do stuff like that.

Mar 21, 2009 11:36 PM
Joanne Johnson
West County, MO

While short sales take a lot of time I do believe  as realtors we can improve the process by providing comprehensive documentation to educate and assist the loss mitigation negotiators. These departments are expanding so rapidly and many of their employees are not well trained because of it. In addition, they are working in offices far removed from the markets we are working in. Submitting great short sale packages with all the documentation needed to demonstrate our superior understanding of our local market, the specific property we're negotiating etc, we can do a lot to ensure our short sale packages don't get "filed" because they are incomplete or inadequately informative.

It is easy to get frustrated but let's try to remember the human element too. Refering to people as stupid and incompetent can't do much for a positive working relationship. Our ability to work well with these people will make the difference between a closed transaction and one lost in limbo.

May 18, 2009 10:06 AM
Real Estate Guy in Madison, Wisconsin
Powered by: Real Broker LLC - Madison, WI
Real Estate Guy

Oh Joanne, that is a way too sensible comment for this string of comments.  LOL

I found the whole string compulsive reading.  

Starting with OMG.  to that's what title insurance is for and Steve's you are all good!!

Well worth the read.

 

 

 

Aug 20, 2009 04:42 PM
Margaret C. Taylor
Century 21 New Millennium MD - Mechanicsville, MD
St Marys/Calvert/Charles MD Real Estate Agent

It looks like you just have to keep trying and trying and trying, and hope some system will make it get better.  Margaret C.

Jan 15, 2010 02:26 PM
Kimberley Kelly, SFR, HAFA, GREEN
HK Lane, Christie's International Affiliate, 760-285-3578 - La Quinta, CA
I do Real Estate like I played polo-to WIN!

I too found this string compulsive reading.  I love hearing other Realtors take on things.  I've been listing Short Sales in Palm Springs, CA for 5 years now and CW is not one of my worst experiences!  Figure that one out.  I am closing up on one now that has 2 loans with them and the MI on the 2nd was sold to a collection Agency!  EEEEK!  We are down to the end it appears, because I finally tracked them down and got to their payoff number..we'll see if I get the promised Approval Letters this week.

I learned something here again..do NOT speed over the Approval letters.  I am going to look at the 2 I got yesterday and double check those addresses..wonder if I missed a zip code???

Jun 22, 2011 03:03 AM