Posts tagged short sales

Short Sales Might be Getting Easier (maybe)

Short sales still comprise parts of the Charlottesville area real estate market; in some segments they are a greater percentage, in others they are nearly nonexistent. I’m sharing this information with you so that you can be as well informed as possible. Short sales remain an adventure – for buyers, sellers and their Realtors – and hopefully this settlement signals some progress.*

You may have heard about the $25 billion mortgage settlement … for a look at some of the critical numbers in the settlement, ProPublica has a great breakdown, including:

60-200: documents signed daily by different individual loan processors working for Bank of America, according to the government audit.

12-18 inches: height of the stacks of documents one Bank of America employee signed “without a review.”

$1 million: fine to be levied on the banks for each violation of the terms of the overall settlement, escalating to $5 million for repeat violations. (Exactly how fines will be tallied is still unclear.)

But did you know that the settlement ostensibly makes short sales, often the bane of existence who are fans of things happening in a timely fashion, logic, reason and accountability … better?

The NAR put together these takeaways from the mortgage settlement. As Sarah says, these may become helpful reality or they might be representative of another shiny unicorn that does nothing other than frustrate us — these are only for the top 5 banks, not all of the servicers, of which there are many.

1. Short Sale Timeline. The settlement contains short sale standards that are similar to the Treasury Department’s Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternative, or HAFA, program. A number of these standards will improve the short sale process including making short sale requirements publicly available, development of co-op programs to evaluate short sales prior to marketing the home, and the implementation of a 30-day response requirement after receipt of all required information and third party consents.

2. No Dual Tracking. As part of the settlement, the five servicers will no longer be able to proceed with a foreclosure sale if a short sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure has been approved by all parties (first lien investor, junior lien holder, and mortgage insurer, as applicable) and proof of funds or financing has been provided to the servicer. Servicers will also face strict foreclosure referral guidelines if borrowers have requested a loan modification.

3. Single Point of Contact. NAR has long called on servicers to establish a single point of contact for borrowers. This provision will not only assist in maintaining consistency and coordination of loss mitigation options, but will reduce the amount of time agents and brokers spend discussing individual short sale files with new negotiators.

4. Establishment of Loan Portal. Though processes have recently improved, many members report that lost documents requiring multiple submissions continue to cause delays. The five servicers have agreed to consolidate information for borrowers by developing online loan portals that will provide borrowers with access to information, eligibility factors for loss mitigation programs, and inform borrowers of required documentation that is missing.

5. Strong Enforcement Mechanism. The success of a number of well-intentioned programs has been hampered by voluntary servicer participation and a seemingly lack of compliance oversight. The five national banks party to the settlement will be required to regularly report compliance to an independent, outside monitor that reports to state attorneys general. State attorneys general and the U.S. Department of Justice can seek redress if the banks don’t follow the settlement terms.

Sarah Stelmok in Fredericksburg’s excellent post on the new short sale guidelines spurred this post.

* I doubt it.

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A (Congressionally Mandated) Faster Short Sale Decision on the Horizon?

For context, in the Charlottesville MSA – Charlottesville, Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene and Nelson, right now, there are 2513 active residential listings. 72 are marked as Short Sales.

…‘(4) SHORT SALE- The term ‘short sale’ means the sale of the dwelling or residential real property that is subject to the mortgage, deed or trust, or other security interest that secures a residential mortgage loan that–
… ‘(B) requires authorization by the securitization vehicle or other investment vehicle or holder of the mortgage loan, or the servicer acting on behalf of such a vehicle or holder.’.

…(b) Applicability- The amendment made by subsection (a) of this section shall apply to any written request for a short sale made after the date of the enactment of this Act.

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Should Realtors Disclose if They Haven’t Represented a Short Sale?

The services which REALTORS® provide to their clients and customers shall conform to the standards of practice and competence which are reasonably expected in the specific real estate disciplines in which they engage; specifically, residential real estate brokerage, real property management, commercial and industrial real estate brokerage, land brokerage, real estate appraisal, real estate counseling, real estate syndication, real estate auction, and international real estate.

REALTORS® shall not undertake to provide specialized professional services concerning a type of property or service that is outside their field of competence unless they engage the assistance of one who is competent on such types of property or service, or unless the facts are fully disclosed to the client . … 2 – Customers/potential clients (they’re different things by the way; see Article 1, Standard of Practice 1-2) should be interviewing their potential representation as if they are hiring someone to represent them in the biggest financial transaction of their lives. … 3 – If a Realtor is not doing at least five (and some have argued ten) transactions a year, they are most likely not up to speed on the most recent happenings, changes, relationships that are crucial to client success in this market.

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Charlottesville Short Sales and Listing Agents’ Responsibilities – Part 1

If I were a buyer and saw potential short sale/foreclosure, I would probably move on to some other property given the amount of time I hear it takes to complete a short sale. … The Charlottesville MLS now has a required field from which Realtors much choose one of the following when inputting a listing: – Standard – Lender Owned – Short Sale (of 2323 active listings, 53 are noted as being short sales … this seems ridiculously low ) Short sales take longer – in everything, they take longer . … Let prices fall until the goods find a buyer.    The question in the first paragraph was posted on a conversation at the Charlottesville Bubble Blog , and it is very pertinent question, particularly as short sales are becoming more and more a part of the Charlottesville* real estate market.

…Buyer Agents would be wise to put language in the contract that ensures the Buyer’s contingencies (such as home inspections) do not begin until approval from the Lender to proceed at the current price.

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Learning About Short Sales

Our local Realtor Association is holding a lunch tomorrow on short sales , which are becoming more and more of an issue in the Charlottesville market. … 2) This will be yet another confirmation that it is clearly easier to complain about short sales (and anything else, really) rather than learn how to deal with them.

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