Getting a refund of the funds from Escrow when the next buyer comes along will ONLY work IF the Seller uses the SAME Escrow Company for the next transaction. There is NO Guarantee this will happen with a different buyer!
You said....... "we just trusted her and kept signing"...... Do you not read what you are signing?
Escrow's job is to facilitate the transaction according to the instructions agreed upon between the Buyer and the Seller as provided in the Purchase Agreement and any Addenda that followed. Escrow is an independent 3rd party and cannot disburse funds to anyone or any entity without Seller / Buyer signatures.
I am positive at some point you signed a document that allowed Escrow to use / advance your funds for the HOA docs and the HOA Cert. prior to closing. Obviously the transfer of the property has not happened so you likely did not pay for the HOA Transfer Fee.
I strongly suggest you contact your Agent's Broker and ask to have a face-to-face meeting with him / her. It is in the Broker's best interest to ensure everyone leaves this transaction feeling "ok"and to ensure everything was done appropriately per the contract.
The lender and agent should have known property was a flip within the 1 day of acceptance. Lenders have very specific guidelines regarding flips and should have communicated.
On the purchase contract who was paying HOA docs fee (buyer/seller)? If seller, you should be refunded. Either way I would call escrow and return the docs so they can be used on the next transaction.
Also, the market is flooded with flips. Most lenders will require 2 appraisals and will not order the 2nd appraisal until 1st is appraisal is done. This will delay escrow on the standard 30 escrow and sometimes 45 day.
Premier Ca Realty
Vicki makes a good point with regards to returning the documents to escrow.
Typically the HOA can only charge you for the actual cost of preparing and delivering any HOA documents to you. You may want to consult directly with the HOA management company to determine the true and actual cost of the documents, it may very well have been the amount quoted to you.
As to the timing of when the documents were ordered, the 90 day wait and the timing of the second appraisal, I really cannot speak to that, your contract as mentioned by Vicki would dictate the actions of the Escrow company.
Contact the escrow and tell them that they must return the money when another buyer will enter escrow and they pay for the cert, then they must release your funds and take theirs.
Your agent should also explain that to you. That money will not be lost. They cannot do it. You have good cause to cancel and you are entitled to full refund.
You can also call the broker of your agent and complain and ask the broker to get involved.
If your agent is a broker then tell him that it is his fiduciary responsiblity to do everything to take your money back and if he does not treat your money like yours then you will have to call the real estate board.
You will get it back.
Do not sweat it.
Good Luck :)
Allstar Brokers Network
Your agent, or your lender should have told you about the 90-day flip restriction, along with the 2 appraisal requirement. The HOA management company is the one who required the $700 for the HOA fees. It might be possible to get a refund if the lender for the next buyer requires them, and you have returned them to escrow.
Good luck -