Home Buying in Seattle>Question Details

Lisa, Home Buyer in Seattle, WA

BPO was ordered

Asked by Lisa, Seattle, WA Mon Mar 19, 2012

A bank finally order a BPO (after 5 months of the bid on a short sale). My question is: does the BPO do valuation for the interior or the exterior only.( the house inside in a very bad shape)?

Also, my agent told me that the lockbox was removed! who removed it and why? Can i guess that my bid is reaching a final stage and closer to get a decision?

Help the community by answering this question:


Hi Lisa,

First, your agent needs to talk to the listing agent to find the status of your short sale. Five months is a very long time, so that indicates some tasks have not been done on the listing agent side of the short sale.

Broker's Price Opinions are done for many reasons. One is that the lenders need to continually know the value of their inventory. They are also done as part of the short sale process for the bank to get a third party opinion of the value and to determine the "striek price" at the auction.

It is best for the listing agent or short sale negotiator to request an interior BPO, because if there is a lot of work that needs doing, the lender needs to know as this greatly affects the value. also, if an interior BPO is requested, and the listing agent has the BPO agent contact them for entry into the house, the listing agent then knows when the agent doing the BPO was there.

Per the Deed of Trust, lenders have the right to secure a property if it is sitting vacant, to protect the property. Your agent should check to see if the property is scheduled for a foreclosure sale. Your agent can look up to see if there is a Notice of Trustee Sale and that will have the date of the sale and list the judgments, late fees, interest owed, etc. against the property.

Your agent or the listing agent, or even you, if you know how to use the county web site, can find the above information. You can also find out what company or attorney is handling the sale and can check the trustee's web site.

If the listing agent is savvy, they can have their seller contact the company who changed the locks and if the property is being actively marketed, the listing agent can get access to the keys and continue marketing the property. This is what I did recently. I was then able to continue marketing the property, generate a purchase and sale agreement, get a short sale approved and get the auction date postponed - all within one week of the auction.

Good luck and feel free to contact me with any more questions you may have.

Warm Regards,
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 23, 2012
I'm wondering why your questions are not directed toward your own agent? The REALTOR'S Code of Ethics, and other rules and laws, prevents agents from interfering in an existing contractual relationship. Giving advice on a specific existing transaction could be construed as such. I would encourage you to go back to your agent for the help and advice you need. Good luck to you!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 19, 2012
Dear Sleepless in Seattle,
Anything new here? How long has it been? Is this your first purchase? Do you have a signed contract with money down? There are few easy answers in a short sale.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 6, 2012
When making an offer on a short sale, your agent should make sure a reputable short sale negotiator is working the file. Otherwise this process can take a long long time. We've many deals in less than 90 days with a high quality negotiator.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jun 5, 2012
As you've found out short sales can take months and months to just get a reply to your offer. Your agent should have made you aware that this was likely to happen. If the BPO has been done then you're another step closer however it still could take several weeks as the bank will have to send it to the investor and there could be more delays as it sits waiting to be reviewed. It is typically a valuation of the inside and outside. If the house is vacant the bank will probably change the locks and put one of their lock boxes on the door.

You should make sure that your agent follows up with the listing agent to find out where they are in the process. Hopefully the listing agent has been keeping up with the bank and it doesn't get sold by the bank. Sometimes the left hand at the bank doesn't know what the right hand is doing.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 23, 2012
I am very concerned that you are in a short sale with an agent who gives you answers such as "I have no idea"? Short sales are a shadowy deal and while the seller accepted your offer the short bank is the one holding the cards. The sellers agent may also be weak which in a short sale means a lot of people could be wasting a lot of time. These are no place for a first time buyer or better a new agent. Attorneys are also key to the outcome (at least in my market).
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue May 22, 2012
It could be a government backed loan that could be taking the long turnaround. Hopefully your selling agent and listing agent are working together to be sure the bank is aware of the condition inside. I have a short sale listing exactly as you described and it does take continual acknowledgement of the condition from the bank - we have forwarded our own pictures to the bank as well due to the BPO that was done neglected to capture all the interior damage. You should be closer to finding out what the bank will approve. Best of luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue May 22, 2012
Hello Lisa,

The lockbox is often removed after the property is under contract.
Noone, other than the seller or his agent, is supposed to come in. If the property is empty, there could be theft of appliances etc. - and the lockbox could be a sign for intruders to come in into a vacant property. BPO agent should really see the property accompanied by the listing agent also - to point out problems, to see if the bpo agent knows the area...so not having a lock box there does not serve any good purpose.

BPO is supposed to do both interior and exterior evaluation of the property.
The worse property looks on the inside, the better it is for you - it will support your offer.
However, sometimes evaluations ordered are not bpo - they are external evaluations only.
This could be found out by your agent - from the listing agent/negotiator on the deal.

Hope this helps,

Irina Karan
Beachfront Realty, Inc.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 25, 2012
Thanks for the responses. it is deeply appreciate it!

I tend to ask her because my agent's answers are neither convincing nor helpful.

The updates that he forwards to me from the listing agent contradict whats going on. First, i was told that a BPO was assigned 22 days ago, and i will be hearing back no later than a week. Of course nothing happened yet. When i called my agent, asking if the BPO did the valuation, he simply said "i have no idea. And we will never know when it is going to happen!"

2 days ago, he sent another update saying the lock box was removed. Again,when i asked him to explain what does that mean, he simply said that the bank removed the locks so the BPO could enter the property. It sounds misleading to me. Also, i am sick of this process. I made the bid 5 months ago and it was accepted and signed the same night by the seller. The bank received the hardship package of the seller within 3 days of the original bid.

After 4 and a half months of waiting, my agent finally got a call saying that a BPO was ordered. We were supposed to hear back 22 days ago, but nothing.

I prefer to get a third opinion from the community here(Thank you) because you seem more knowledgeable than my agent . And , you tell me the truth, unlike my agent who just provides me with wrong info every time i ask a question.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 19, 2012
The first thing you might consider regarding this is that perhaps your agent is getting incorrect information from the listing agent, and is simply relaying the information they received. Second, I would recommend, if you do not feel your agent has the knowledge you require, you may consider talking with their "managing broker" and express your concerns in that way. As Hannah mentioned it is not only against the Realtor code of ethics but also against MLS rules for an agent to give you any information of value regarding this matter, and if they do they could be subject to some hefty fines as well as suspension of their license. Lastly, if it is your agent, they likely have had little to no experience dealing with such offers, in which case you should consider interviewing your (next) Agent a bit more carefully (should this transaction fail to close). And keep in mind, Short Sales can take anywhere from a matter of 3 months (minimum) and as long as a year to get them closed. good luck
Flag Wed Mar 21, 2012
Things are finally progressing it looks like. It is amazing it took so long for the BPO. they just hurt themselves because now the house is worth less then before. the listing agent probably removed the lock box & he will then let the BPO agent in when they come out. Good luck! Also, I am wondering why you are not asking your agent these questions.

Jirius Isaac
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 19, 2012
The BPO does usually include interior. The BPO being ordered does mean you will likely get a response soon. The lockbox being removed is of no consequence. If anything that is good for you, but pretty much a non-issue.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 19, 2012
Chances are the BPO is what is called a "drive by". So, the agent who is performing the BPO will not go inside the home. Really, the bank who is in control is looking at market conditions in relation to the agreed upon sales price. Making sure they are in line.
The lock box was probably removed by the listing agent in anticipation of the sale being successful.
And, it is safe to say, that you are getting closer to a decision from the sellers bank.
Congratulaions for hanging in there! I wish you success!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 19, 2012
The keybox was probably removed because the sellers didn't want to have it on their door while the bank took 5 months to make a decision. The listing agent would have removed it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 19, 2012
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