Even if the seller accepted your offer, that is one of many steps. That is the initial acceptance, but it's the lender who will make the FINAL decision.
A short sale doesn't mean a short period of time --- far from it. It may take more than 45 days to get a response from the seller who can accept, reject, or counter the offer(s).
Prior to the property being offered as a short sale, the seller and the listing agent should have already provided a lot of information to the lender that justifies the short sale. The lender could approve the short sale listing, or wait until after they receive an offer.
Regardless of how often the agent follows up with the lender, it is not going to expedite the process much, and may even a source of annoyance. One loan negotiator even has this greeting on his voice mail "Calls to follow up on status will not be returned as they only delay the process." Most negotiators may be handling 300 short sale files. If each agent calls each day, can you imagine fielding 300 calls a day?
Depending on the MLS rules and what the lender instructs the listing agent to do, the house could remain active on the market until after the lender --- NOT the seller --- officially accepts an offer. If another offer comes after yours, and it's deemed to be better than yours, the lender could accept that offer instead.
That's why when writing an offer on a short sale, give it your best shot. Submit your best and highest offer. A short sale doesn't automatically mean you should lowball an offer. Some short sale listings are very close to their true market value. This is where a realtor can help --- by providing guidance on comps, market conditions, and writing your offer.
Here's a very good article on How to Buy a Short Sale http://homebuying.about.com/od/buyingahome/bb/BuyingShortSale.htm. You'll find links to other articles, but start with this one.
Your contract probably specifies, "third party approval." This means the bank has to approve the seller's contract. By dropping the price they are more then likely attempting to attract other buyer interest. In doing so they may be trying to drive the final sale price up.
Is this ethical? Not by my definition but it happens all the time with these types of sales.
If your deadline has been missed, you may want to consider recovering your deposit and moving on....if they are genuinely interested in dealing with you this may get their attention. Then you will need to decide if you can trust them enough to move forward with the sale.
Unfortunately, short sales come at an expense!
Steven J. Pahl e-PRO
Keller Williams Tampa Properties
I definitely think it is time for you to start looking at other properties. If you have nothing signed and it is still active, you have no deal.
Have your agent push them for a signed contract or don't waste your time. If you DO go into a contract watch your dates closely, the banks can often take longer than the closing date you list on the contract, so make sure you get extensions to CYA
GOOD LUCK TO YOU :-D
The lenders don't seem to care about contract dates. And sometimes the lender needs more paperwork from you. If ALL the documents the lender wants are not submitted at the same time, they might just set the file aside and not even give it another thought. And there's also the possibility that they'd rather foreclose, although that's not as likely as them hoping for a better offer. Under any of these scenarios though, the only one that would be your agent's fault is if she didn't get all the proper documentation to the lender. And even that might not be her fault, if the lender did not properly communicate with her.
So yes, it may be your agents fault. But from my experience, it's usually the lender that holds up the process. They can stall everything for 60-90 days sometimes. All they care about is how much money they can get. So yes, while you're waiting in limbo, the lender is doing all they can to find a way to get more money for that property.
Do you have a signed transaction brokerage agreement with this agent that presented the offer?
If you do not, then you have the right to choose another agent to work with. If you do NOT have a signed, executed contract then she does not have to put the home into pending.
I would highly suggest you get a buyer's agent involved.... It sounds like this is the first offer on this house and the Bank hasn't yet agreed to even do a short sale yet...
If this property is listed in the Mid -Florida Regional MLS there are rules that state the property must be placed as Pending if a signed and accepted offer has been recieved from the seller. An agreement would have needed to be signed by both parties to allow the property to be marketed while under contract "called first right of refusal (kick out clause).
Mid Florida Regional rules strictly state this and the selling agent is in direct violation and subject to fine. Your realtor should know this!! If you need more visit my web and email me directly...