We are in contract to buy a short sale and are supposed to close the end of this month, but the bank just accepted a payment from owner.

Asked by Sangria82, 43205 Tue Jun 14, 2011

Now they say we have to wait until next month to close! (Presumably after the owner misses another payment.) I feel like we're being screwed around with by the bank and the owner. Is this some kind of scam? Owner/seller does not occupy the home. Don't we have rights as buyers?

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Jeff Paeltz, Agent, New Albany, OH
Tue Jun 14, 2011
Hello Sangria82,

My answer is more of an echo to what has already been posted. One, this sounds very unregular if you are indeed in contract and Karen makes a good point, if the sellers are looking to sell then why on earth would they be making a payment. Hopefully your using a Realtor and they should be all over this looking for an explanation. ( If not then this is one of those moments which underscore my point of buyers needing to use a Realtor to protect their interest.) This could be a tough decision. Do you get an attorney on board to see if anyone is now in breach of contract, but if so, is there anyone to go after for damages which you would have to prove, or do you hang on or walk away. Consult with an real estate attorney and your ( or a) Realtor to explore your options and risk.

All the best,

Jeffrey Paeltz,SFR
1 vote
Karen Parsons…, Agent, Laguna Beach, CA
Tue Jun 14, 2011

If you are waiting on a written approval....and don't have one, then there is a possibility that you won't. The seller might be trying a loan mod...which is what it sounds like. There is no reason for a seller to make a payment unless they want to keep the home.

1 vote
Jeffrey Cotn…, Agent, Canal Winchester, OH
Sun Jun 26, 2011
Your agent should be on top of this for you. But... if your in contract, you should have a closing date. If it goes past that date, you are out of contract. The banks play this game all the time. The bank is in charge of the situation, they will never turn money down from the seller until it is full blown forclosure. The bank really and truly could care less what you want as the buyer. I hope your agent told you all this up front, but short sales are very painful at the least.
I would hope your not in a scam, but again, if your working with an agent, the should be working on this for you.
0 votes
Dee Nofziger, Agent, Toledo, OH
Sun Jun 19, 2011
Gosh, there could be so many reasons for this scenario. Sometimes the bank wants a seller to come to the closing table with money. Sometimes they don't.

Sometimes a seller needs to be 3 months behind, sometimes they don't.

Sometimes these short sales close on time, most of the time they don't.

The only 100% for sure thing in a short sale transaction is that a buyer will be stressed out and wondering what the heck is going on.

What every buyer needs to know and understand when they make an offer on a short sale is ... the seller's lender is pretty much in charge ... period. In most, if not all, instances, you would have signed paperwork agreeing to a multitude of ifs, ands, or buts, all in the bank's favor.

With all that being said, it probably isn't very helpful. You need to speak with your agent and go over your contract. Best of luck.

Dee Nofziger|Danberry Realtor
0 votes
Tean Wong, Agent, Boston, MA
Tue Jun 14, 2011
You are in contract? Is it a signed accepted offer by the seller? Or you have a purchase and sales agreement signed?

I don't think you are in a short sales.

I hope you have an attorney advising you on this contract you have., if so, you should have your attorney figure it out now. Don't waste time.
0 votes
Cathy Schwan…, Agent, Dublin, OH
Tue Jun 14, 2011
Sangria82; there are many variables to answer this question correctly. Everything already said is in fact correct based on different variables. The best thing to do is talk your RE Agent about it. He or She is the best person to answer your questions. If you are feeling doubtful to what he/she is telling you, consult a RE attorney. Good Luck, short sales are never easy or a lot of fun, but well worth it if you have the time.
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James Deskins, Agent, Worthington, OH
Tue Jun 14, 2011
FYI, the bank will not let you take possession before closing, especially if the seller is trying to catch up on the mortgage.
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Jason Opland, Agent, Westerville, OH
Tue Jun 14, 2011
If the bank approved the offer they would have issued an approval letter which in turn would have included a closing date. If the bank and seller are suggesting they have to wait until next month to close they are in breach of contract unless you've agreed to postponed the closing in an addendum. If you financing is in place and you have a loan commitment I would suggest you have your agent speak with the listing agent and request permission to take possession prior to the closing. If the owners are no longer occupying the property and you have a loan commitment there is little risk to them in permitting you to take possession in advance of the closing. Good luck!
0 votes
Joel Kahn, Agent, Westerville, OH
Tue Jun 14, 2011
It really depends on what's in the contract and any addendums that you signed. It sounds "out of the ordinary" but if you signed something stating that allowed them to do this (check any addendums signed, especially the ones provided to you by the listing agent and/or the seller's lender) then they may not be doing anything wrong.

Speak with your agent and you should probably involve a real estate attorney at this point as well.
Web Reference:  http://www.joelmkahn.com
0 votes
Gerard Carney, Agent, Spring Hill, FL
Tue Jun 14, 2011
This is not acceptable since in order to be in a short sale the owner has to have missed at least three payments, This is not normal at all, get you Realtor on this and if need be get an attorney on them
0 votes
Fred Glick, Agent, Mountain View, CA
Tue Jun 14, 2011
If you have a valid contract, then they have to sell.

Let your agent find out details or hire an attorney if you are not represented..
Web Reference:  http://Fredglick.com
0 votes
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