Home Buying in 94710>Question Details

Gigi, Home Buyer in 94706

I've made an offer on a short-sale. The listing agent says the lender won't respond to him or the home's owner

Asked by Gigi, 94706 Thu Aug 14, 2008

How can it be that the bank would ignore all communication? My lender told me to go directly to the lender that owns the house. How can I find out who/what bank this is? I asked the listing agent and he refused to give me the information.

Help the community by answering this question:


Hi Gigi,

I am also a listing agent of a short sale that has been going on for 8 months with Countrywide. It seems like they just don't want to do anything. We follow up with them at least twice a week. For the longest time they kept saying our seller wanted a modification of the loan whereas from the begining it was a short sale.

Then for 6 months they had not appointed a negotiator and when they finally did, they said we would get a call in a month. After a month when we did not hear back and called them, they had changed the negotiator. Once again they said we had to wait another month before the negotator would call us.

When we called the lender yesterday, they informed us that they had set a sale date for September. Can you believe that? After all this work and follow up, they have set a sales date...What's up with that? Can you see my frustration? So, yes, as the other agents have mentioned below WELCOME TO THE SHORT SALES WORLD.

We have a good offer from a buyer who has been very patient for 3 months. But I just got a call from the buyer's agent saying they are backing out tomorrow.

You see, none of us can do much when it comes to a short sale. The lender always tells us how busy they are and each person has over 500 files.

We were willing to give the lender information to the buyer's agent but he was not able to get far with them either. So in your case I don't know what your agent will be able to do even if he gets the information.

Good luck with the short sale.

Meena Gujral
Help-U-Sell Achievers Realty
2 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 14, 2008
Welcome to the worst part of Short Sales. I am sorry there is little I can offer you in encouragement, and I am not sure I would refer you directly to the lender, primarily the lender is not required to speak with you, you aren't their client and they are likely to tell you they can't speak to you because of Privacy Laws.

So what can you do. You can go back to you Realtor and ask them to draft a letter to the Broker/Agent and Owner of the home you are trying to purchase. Identify your frustration and clearly place a boundary of your intent to pursue. In other words - give them a time limit for response.

But remember that a normal Short Sale rarely comes within a 30 day period. In fact plan on 60 days or more.

As so why the lender isn't motivated - well there could be a number of reasons.
Could the lender be one of the banks which is only servicing loans, having closed their doors/business
to doing loans (ie IndyMac, Countrywide, etc)

Could it be the seller is not deliquent in payments and hence the lender isn't motivated or view the short
sale as a priority.

Could it be the seller has NOT completed the necessary documentation which is required for the bank to
refer the file to an Asset Manger

There could be a number of reasons for lack of communication. Not to mention the experience of the agents which factors in.

In short - good luck - if you LOVE the house, hang in there - work in partnership with your Realtor. If not, maybe it's time to move on!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 14, 2008
You can find anything recorded in the public records (mortgages, deeds, etc.) by going to the Clerk of Courts office in your county. I would be willing to bet that the bank will certainly not communicate with you if they haven't responded to the owner or listing agent though.
How long has it been since you submitted the offer? An agent in my office just closed a short sale after EIGHT (8) long months.
You have to ask yourself this very important question: should you continue to wait or should you find another property. Many of my buyers decide to look for non-short sales to buy; even if they are foreclosures they tend to be a lot quicker.
Good Luck!
Maryann Lawler, REALTOR
Keller Williams Realty
Bradenton, FL
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 14, 2008
The problem is that if it is a short sale, the lender does not own the property, that would be a bank owned home or REO. In a short sale the home owner is still the owner of the home, they are just simply seeking the approval of their bank to sell the home for less which should be at or below the current market value.


Please see my blog for more tips and advice on buying a short sale
Web Reference: http://www.ScottSellsNH.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 13, 2011
You may be getting some wrong answers...

On a short sale, the listing agent should get a letter of authorization from the seller to the bank to enable the agent to communicate with an asset manager regarding the specific property. Without that letter, the bank will not talk with anyone other than the Seller. If that listing agent hasn't done that first step, then he must be inexperienced in terms of short sale listings.

Most asset managers would not touch a file unless it has all the necessary information the manager would need to process the sale --- the seller's financials, tax returns, proof of most recent sources of income, letter of authorization, hardship letter --- and an offer.

Even if you knew which lender has the loan, no one from the bank will talk with you or your agent about that specific property without that letter of authorization --- and why would the seller or the listing agent give that to you? Asset managers may have up to 300 files they're working on at any give time, so any follow up calls only serve to delay or impede the process.

Resign yourself to the fact that it may take upwards of 45 days from the time you submit an offer to the time the lender will respond. This is why it's been extremely frustrating for both the buyer and the agents to deal with short sales.

Take a look at regular sales that are comparable to the properties that are short sales or REOs. You may be pleasantly surprised to see some homes are being priced competitively that it may be worth it to try for those.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Sep 27, 2008

I concur with the previous answers. Short sales can be good deals for buyers but can also be a great frustration. Imagine that if in your job (whatever it is ) your workload tripled and you weren't given any additional help; it might be difficult for you to get anything done especially if all those people were calling you all the time to find out when you would have an answer to them. That is essentially what happened to the mortgage industry. The number of home owners in trouble has gone up a lot in the past 12 months, but the number of people available to deal with them hasn't. This has resulted in poor service for buyers, sellers, and realtors alike.

I represented a buyer in a short sale earlier this year where we waited 75 days with no response from the seller's bank. The listing agent was from my company and we have a great relationship so we were in constant communication about what was going on. She would be on hold for over an hour without anyone from the bank even picking up the phone. When she finally got through she would usually be told the person she was trying to reach was unable to speak with her, the paperwork she sent could not be found, or some other excuse. The buyer pulled out of the contract after the waiting period in the contract expired and went on to another house. The home ended up going up for auction because the bank wanted to get rid of the property (about 6 months after the original offer).

Be prepared to wait for a response, be prepared to receive no response, and be prepared to make an offer on another house in a few months. Count yourself lucky if you get a response from the bank and they accept your offer.

Sorry for the gloomy outlook.

Scott Sullivan
Prudential Network Realty
Fleming Island, FL
C: (904) 327-5676
O: (904) 269-1716
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 14, 2008
You need to get your own agent! The Listing Agent represents the Seller and has the Seller's best interests as his/her primary focus. With that being said, the Seller's lender will not be able to communicate directly with you or your agent without the express permission of the Seller to do so, but at least your own agent will be able to let you know the details behind this sale and whether or not it appears to be a viable short sale. Finally....the term "short sale" only applies to the loan......the process will most likely be very long and may not pan out.....in South OC, only 13% of all the short sales on the market are actually closing. Good Luck and let me know if you need a referral to a good buyers agent to represent you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 14, 2008
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