Orlando Real Estate

Banks in Real Estate

September 18th, 2009 10:45 AM by David W. Welch

As long as I have been in a Realtor, over 12 years, the National Association of Realtors has fought to keep banks out of real estate. The biggest concern has been the potential for conflict of interest with banks holding all the cards in a transaction. For those of you not in the industry, you were probably unaware of this conflict even occurring. Banks would lobby representatives for legislation to allow them into the real estate business, then NAR would have to explain why that was a bad idea. Fortunately, the rational arguments against banks in real estate won out time and time again in spite of the considerable lobbying efforts of the banks. If banks ever try to get back into the business again after their remarkably inept handling of short sales and REO's, I will be shocked.

My posts about short sales and REO's generate a lot of comments from people all over the country experiencing the exact same issues. A recent short sale that actually closed this month is a great example of how poorly banks are managing that process. We went to contract the first week of March, and mid September. In April the BPO (the first BPO) was ordered, and by the end of May, we were told that we would receive approval first thing Monday. When Monday came and went, we found out the negotiator for the bank quit on Friday. It took two more weeks for his files to be re-assigned, then two more for the new negotiator to look at our file. At that time, he said there was nothing in the file to suggest it was approved. In July, we were told it would be approved by month's end. The first week of August, the bank asked for everything to be updated again and ordered the second BPO. Finally, in September we received the approval, and this week we closed.

My buyer and I have been waiting for ten days to hear back on a Fannie Mae foreclosure. All the listing agent can tell us is that Fannie Mae is behind. This is the third property she has written an offer on that has put us through the waiting game only to accept another offer. Needless to say, we are continuing to look for back ups to write another offer. The banks, Fannie and Freddie cannot make timely decsions on offers as a regular course of business. I tell all of my customers that time is our biggest enemy in real estate. While they are taking too much time to make a decision, buyers are jumping on other properties coming on the market. Some buyers are actually saying forget it, and waiting until things "get back to normal." In some cases the banks inability or unwillingness to respond is just plain rude and unbusinesslike. One of my buyers cancelled a contract on a bank owned after the inspection found multiple active roof leaks and the possibility of mold. The person in charge at the bank was on vacation, and my buyer had to wait more than a week for the cancellation to be signed and forwarded to the title agent to release his deposit. If you miss a deadline with the bank they want to charge a $100 per diem for the delay.

Hopefully, they won't ask to get into real estate after this is behind us.  If they do, I hope our legislators have long memories.

Orlando Real Estate, David Welch Real Estate Optimist

Posted in:General
Posted by David W. Welch on September 18th, 2009 10:45 AM

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