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Steve Armstr…, Real Estate Pro in Tampa, FL

Has anyone had more luck doing attorney represented Short Sales?

Asked by Steve Armstrong, Tampa, FL Wed Dec 17, 2008

I have now done a couple of short sales and have referred a few clients to an attorney when things get sticky. I dont know if it is a product of the situation or just a basic perception but I dont know if these people are getting "more for their money" when they engage an attorney to represent them in these short sales. I sometimes feel like the bank response better initially but then slows down before making any decisions. Anyone have any comments on this? Not trying to offend anyone, just more of a curiousity on other peoples experiences.

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Lynn Brock’s answer
Steve, you pose an interesting question. From our experience, it really depends upon the attorney and their internal system, follow up and persistence in handling short sales. Their participation appears to depend upon the price point of the property and complexity of it. Typically, million dollar properties we have seen handled by attorneys. Under $500,000 by short sale negotiators or attorneys if borrower owned a portfolio of properties and is liquidating it.

Some short sale negotiators work miracles. Some attorneys make a mess of it. It is truly dependent upon the situation, the attorney, the borrower and the lender(s).
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Mar 29, 2011
I have just started my first short sale with a professional negotiator, Ridge Equity Solutions, a mortgage broker. So far, it has been a pleasant experience. The have handled the negotiations with the bank which frees up my time to concentrate on finding buyers and marketing.
Web Reference: http://www.for4closures.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 12, 2010
Because real estate practices vary so widely from state to state I’ll just preface this by saying I am an agent in Calif. It is not common for us to RE attorneys in our transactions.

Before taking a short sale I will have clients consult with an attorney and CPA. Having an attorney as part of the team has proven helpful mainly for the additional peace of mind and information provided to the client.
There has only been one occasion so far to get an attorney directly involved and that was in regards to having all of the remaining debt “forgiven” ($198k) as opposed to having my clients sign a promissory note.

I have not found a negotiating company yet although still actively searching for one that is competent and fair in pricing.

Lori, 1% seems totally fair for having someone else negotiate with the bank.
I do wish you much luck Steve. Short sales are very time consuming.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 20, 2008
As to an attorney’s effectiveness as a Short Sale Negotiator, it depends on the person: their experience, their attitude in dealing with the loss mitigators and their diligence. Some are good at it and some are not (though they claim to be). The trick is in finding a good one. Check any 3rd party negotiator out thoroughly. Get references. Find out how many Shorts they have done. Beware of claims of “we deal with all the lenders”. There are as many as 50 or so lenders/servicers. Someone who has done 20 Short Sales has not dealt with all of them. As Real Estate Agents our time is best spent securing clients, finding houses and getting them sold. I use either an attorney negotiator and another non-attorney negotiator depending on the lender whenever possible. Negotiating Shorts is not the best use of your time. If you can find a good 3rd party negotiator: attorney or otherwise, use that person.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 12, 2010
I have been using a short sale negotiation company called Florida Short Sale Negotiators. They are licensed mortgage brokers, not attorneys, and have been getting them done for me on average in 2 months. Every attorney I've tried has been slower than doing them myself.
Web Reference: http://www.fssn.info/
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Jun 3, 2010
Realtor_gri

Welcome to Trulia. I hope you stick around. A couple of your favorites have commented on the blog attached to the link below. Care to add what you think?

http://www.trulia.com/blog/rockinblu/2008/08/ok_now_which_si…
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Dec 21, 2008
I don't think is a good idea to initiate a short sale with an attorney, from my experience they work fine only at the beginning and later all go at the same speed as if you were doing it yourself. I recommend you hire one only if needed. Get one if you are in the position were a short sale came to you 5 to 10 days before the property was foreclosed an attorney can put a stop on the sale and you’ll get the time need it. Title companies usually designate a few employees to exclusively work on you files; I have one that is excellent.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 17, 2011
Nowadays it is prudent to have an atty. involed. it protects the agent and thr client. i have done therm on my own but i think moving forward i would have a qualified title co. working in conceert with an atty.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 8, 2011
BEST ANSWER
I do not waste my time with negotiating directly with banks. They are irresponsible by being unresponsive. They are not willing to compromise in negotiations. The do not take any liability for the condition of the property. I refer all my short sales to Wade Boyette Attorney at Law 352-394-2103. He has an entire office dedicated to short sales. All the bank contacts and explanations to the buyer are handled by him and his staff of lawyers and processors. I simply consult with the buyer from time to time and collect a check after closing.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 10, 2010
BEST ANSWER
I do not waste my time with negotiating directly with banks. They are irresponsible by being unresponsive. They are not willing to compromise in negotiations. The do not take any liability for the condition of the property. I refer all my short sales to Wade Boyette Attorney at Law 352-394-2103. He has an entire office dedicated to short sales. All the bank contacts and explanations to the buyer are handled by him and his staff of lawyers and processors. I simply consult with the buyer from time to time and collect a check after closing.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 10, 2010
I do not waste my time with negotiating directly with banks. They are irresponsible by being unresponsive. They are not willing to compromise in negotiations. The do not take any liability for the condition of the property. I refer all my short sales to Wade Boyette Attorney at Law 352-394-2103. He has an entire office dedicated to short sales. All the bank contacts and explanations to the buyer are handled by him and his staff of lawyers and processors. I simply consult with the buyer from time to time and collect a check after closing.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 27, 2010
I have worked short sales on my own and used an attorney (Yesner and Boss). In my opinion, I can follow up on the file with the lender and get to an approval letter on my own just as well as an attorney's negotiator, sometimes faster. For me using an attorney is about convienience and personal liability. I am relieved of not only the time consuming task of following up with the lender/s, but I can sleep easy at night knowing that my client has received sound legal advice regarding the personal repercussions of a short sale. I thinkg good legal advice is worth every pennny for my clients. I have heard stories from seller's who had a bad experience with an attorney charging them outrageous fees so I feel referring them to an attorney I trust is a service they appreciate.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 19, 2010
Vince LoBue of Yesner and Boss..

727-471-0039 ext 201

http://www.yesnerbooss.com

Hope this helps

Darren White
Keller Williams Tampa Central
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 12, 2010
We use a company called USSA, they seem to be pretty good. Their website is http://www.USSA1.com. Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 20, 2008
I have done it both ways. At one point I was to busy to negotiate my own shortsales and had an attorney do it for me, it worked out pretty well. Some attorneys specialize in this field and can be valuable but I still had to gather quite a bit of info myself for them. At least I didn't have to deal with the loss mitigators.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 19, 2008
I don't think an attorney is neccesarily going to have the skill set to do the best job of negotiating with a loss mitigator.

A letter from an attorney indicating that his client the seller is considering a bankruptcy could be a powerful hardship letter, but outside of that threat I don't think they bring much to the table.

Approved short sales come from... having the proper contacts to follow up on offers/packages... and providing compelling evidence for the lender's BPO agent to support the contract sales price. Unless an attorney is negotiating dozens of short sale deals on contingency... and has their own BPO agent on call... I doubt they will have the right resources.

I know you know the Team Leader in our office Dallas Coffield... give him a call he can go into detail with you regarding how we close short sales in our office.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 19, 2008
I tried several different "negotiators" along the way and was continually frustrated...ended up just negotiating the short sales myself...or by training a team to negotiate them.

An attorney on the seller side usually means an attorney on the lender side....and the lender's attorney has no experience in the valuation and negotian process.
Web Reference: http://www.cindihagley.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 17, 2008
Cindi Hagley, Real Estate Pro in Pleasanton, CA
MVP'08
Contact
It is easier for the agent if someone else is dealing with the bank by all means. the toughest part of a short sale is the daily calls to get any kind of information or to see if they need anything and how much longer.... as an agent you have to decide how much work and stress is worth doing short sales.
Web Reference: http://www.ScottSellsNH.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 17, 2008
Steve, I use a negotiator on my short sale listings who also works with an attorney. Usually they charge 1% of the sale price which either comes from the total commission or sometimes on occasion the lender pays them directly at closing! I feel that they get responses quicker-usually deal with the same contact and don't the run around that we usually do as Realtors. Some would argue that 1% is a lot to give up, but I feel that it is worth it not having to go through the time and aggravation and can focus on generating future business. So far, I am 5 out of 5 short sales closed within 60 days of the original offer. I hope I didn't just jinx myself! Maybe something to consider if you would rather be out in the field instead of one the phone 24/7 arguing with a bank rep.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 17, 2008
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