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Short Sale Education & Training

Short Sale Education & Training

Joel & I just got back from a Short Sale training event in Dallas. It was and excellent event. We learned some great information about how to streamline our processes, learned what is working for other people in similar business around the country and came back energized and ready to share the great information with the rest of our team so we can help as many families as possible.

We were telling one of the Elite REALTORS® we work with about it yesterday and he said “I am so glad to be hooked up with a company that puts such high value on training & education”. He is right, we do put a high value on training and education and here is the benefit to you.

  1. We stay on the leading edge of developments in the lending and real estate industries. If something is going to change or has changed, we know about it (usually before it happens) and can adjust.
  2. We are connected to companies like ours across the country and to mentors who we can learn from and turn to when we have challenges or just want to improve.
  3. We wouldn’t keep investing in training and education if we didn’t plan to be around for a long time to help families facing Michigan Foreclosures.

We know there are lots of companies and people (REALTORS®, Attorney’s, Title companies) whom you can turn to when you are in a distressed situation with your house. We hope that you don’t just turn to them because of their title “Attorney” or “REALTOR®”. We hope you are asking them about their training – what kind, how recent, plans for ongoing training? Who will they turn to when challenges they have never faced before arise? How will they know if there is a major change with your lender or in the industry that could affect your future?

While you are checking them out, give us a call and ask us the same questions. Let us tell you how we can help you get back to better times, without ever charging you a fee. We look forward to putting all our training and education to work for you.

Ann

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How To Price Your Short Sale To Sell

How To Price Your Short Sale To Sell

When doing a short sale, one of the most important things to do is get the house priced right – that is, priced to sell. In order to ensure houses we do short sales with are accurately priced, we usually rely on the expertise of not one, but two REALTORS®. The reason this step is so important is because if the house is priced too high, no one will want to buy it. And if no one wants to buy it, we can’t complete the short sale! Luckily, we have 5 great “Elite REALTORS®” and almost 50 “Inner Circle REALTORS®” that we trust and rely on to get the house sold.

These REALTORS® are scattered all across Michigan. Even though we are based in Plainwell (on the west side of the state), our REALTORS® make it possible for us (and them) to help people across Michigan. We are currently working with sellers as far east as St. Clair County, and all the way north to Mecosta County.

Already have a REALTOR®? If we think we can help you, and your REALTOR® is willing to work with us (and they should, since we have an extremely high success rate and make sure they get paid full commissions!) then this won’t be a problem. To take the first step on doing a short sale to avoid foreclosure, give Emily a call (or have your REALTOR® call her) so that she can discuss your hardship and options, and figure out what is best for you!

Holly

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Don’t Trust Everyone

Today I’m going to give all of the blog readers out there a tidbit of useful advice: Don’t trust your Michigan short sale to just anyone. I’ll tell you why…

Short sales are hard to do! They take a lot of frustrating phone calls, countless hours of your time, some serious negotiation ability, and some on-your-toes critical thinking skills. Not everyone has the time, patience, or skill to close a short sale deal.

Today I did a search on the local MLS to see exactly how many active short sale listings there are out there. The answer is a whopping 1,083! Just in the southwest Michigan area! I then did a search to see how many short sales sold in the last six months: a mere 200. Shocking!

I suppose that due to our much higher than average closing success rate (about 80%) it’s easy for us to forget how many people out there are struggling with their short sales. Many sellers are either trying to do them by themselves, or are using a possibly uninformed, unqualified REALTOR®. Sure, there are REALTORS® out there who are seasoned pros at this (many work with us!), but many aren’t very qualified. They try hard to sells houses and most are good at it. If they are working on a short sale, chances are they are trying their hardest to get it to go through. But all the trying in the world cannot make something work if you simply don’t know how or have the refined skills. We work with several great REALTORS® to try to make sure the house not only gets sold, but also gets an approved short sale. Have you watched Joel’s video on how to determine if your REALTOR® is qualified to do a short sale?

So before you trust your short sale to just anyone, give it some thought. Hopefully you’ll realize that our FREE, confidential services may be a great opportunity for you. Remember, Michigan short sales are all we do!

Holly

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One Way To Not Sell Your House

I recently saw asked a REALTOR® (not one of ours!) how things were going with one of his listings.  it went like this…

“I haven’t talked to the seller in 2 months” he said.

“2 Months? Must be you aren’t getting a lot of showings” I said

“We haven’t had any, it is priced way too high but that is what they need to pay off their debt” he said.

“Sounds like you may need a short sale” I said.

Now I don’t know for sure that this seller is a good candidate for a Michigan short sale or not.. However, I do know that if your house has been listed for more than 2-3 weeks without a showing, then it is priced too high.

I would also say if your REALTOR® has not talked to you in 2 weeks (let alone 2 months, good grief), you need a new REALTOR®. A good REALTOR® will be constantly updating you on progress and suggesting adjustments. If you want to know other ways to judge a how well a REALTOR® will do with your short sale, see this video.

How do you figure out if you need a Michigan short sale, make sure your house is priced correctly and that you have a good REALTOR® ? One way is to talk to us. Especially if you are facing a Michigan foreclosure, selling your house is a time sensitive matter. You don’t have time for trial and error now do you? Give us a call and not only will we help you with your short sale as much as possible, we will put you in touch with our whole team of people, including REALTROS®, who can help you get your house sold and get back to better times.

Ann

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The Fastest Way to Sell Your House and Stop Michigan Foreclosures

Tina and Ron wanted to sell their house and stop a Michigan Foreclosure. However, they wanted the benefit of selling without being inconvenienced by the work it takes to sell a house. As you can guess, they weren’t very successful.

Ron would sit in his easy chair, smoke and watch the game during showings. It was still his house, he said, and he can do what he wants in his house. Tina & Ron would not return the Realtor®’s calls, or clean up before a showing. After all, they worked hard all day and were tired and they were doing the Realtor® a favor letting him list their house. He was going to make money, they weren’t so they would only call him back and clean when they felt up to it (which was never).

This attitude put them on the road to not selling their house, having a full foreclosure on their credit, and having the bank come after them for all the money that was lost.

Have you’ve realized that you can’t afford your house anymore and your best option is to sell it and make a new start? I bet you want to sell it fast and get on to better times. How do you do this?

1. You need to list with a Realtor®. Listing with a Realtor® gets your house listed on the Multiple Listing Service which is where most buyers (working with and without Realtors®) look for houses. If you don’t have money to pay a Realtor® because of a financial hardship, then you may be a good candidate to work with us. We will make sure there is never a fee to you for our service or the Realtor®’s service.
2. You need to allow the Realtor® to show the house. Yes, this will create inconveniences for you, but buyers don’t buy houses without looking at them.
3. You need to follow advice from your Realtor® on things you can do to make the house show better. See earlier BLOGs (here and here) for a list of recommended things to do. Remember, the Realtor® doesn’t get paid unless they sell the house and they will never tell you anything that will jeopardize that goal. They also understand your financial situation and will not ask you to put any money into the house.
4. If the house is rented, you need to get the tenant to cooperate with showings. Remember, you put the tenant in the house, not the Realtor®. You need to control your tenant.
5. If you have asked the Realtor® to notify you about showings, you need to return their calls promptly and let them know the showing time is ok.
6. Yes, sometimes you will have to allow showings on short notice.

Remember, the sooner you find a buyer for your house, the sooner the house will go pending and all showings with stop. Then you can start moving on to better times. We can help you find a Realtor® that will work hard to find a buyer quickly. If you have a financial hardship and are facing foreclosure, we will work with the Realtor® to get the bank to accept a discount so there is no cost to you to sell the house. We will work hard to get your house sold fast! Contact us to learn more.

Ann

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Preparing To Sell The House – Part 2 of 2

Ok, you’ve realized you can’t keep your house due to a hardship that isn’t going away. But you may fear you can’t sell it either because of the down market we have right now in Michigan.

While we can’t help make your hardship go away so you can stay in the house and stop the pending Michigan foreclosure, we can help you sell the house in this market. We will hook you up with an experienced Realtor (one of our Elite Agents who know how to make things happen. However, they will need help & cooperation from you to attract a buyer.

This BLOG post is part two of two with tips you can do to help your house sell (click here for part one). After reading these two posts, I am sure you will want to know more. We can hook you up with one of our Elite Realtors to find a buyer and we will negotiate your short sale. Give us a call so we can get working on this with you.

Fragrances
Do not use scented sprays to prepare for visitors. It is too obvious and many people find the smells of those sprays offensive, not to mention that some may be allergic. If you want to have a pleasant aroma in your house, have a potpourri pot or something natural. Or turn on a stove burner for a moment and put a drop of vanilla extract on it. It will smell like you have been cooking.

Pet Control
If you have pets, make sure your listing agent puts a notice with your listing in the multiple listing service. The last thing you want is to have your pet running out the front door and getting lost. If you know someone is coming, it would be best to try to take the pets with you while the buyers tour the house. If you cannot do that, It is best to keep dogs in a penned area in the back yard. Try to keep indoor cats in a specific room when you expect visitors, and put a sign on the door. Most of the time, an indoor cat will hide when buyers come to view your property, but they may panic and try to escape.

The Kitchen Trash
Especially if your kitchen trash can does not have a lid, make sure you empty it every time someone comes to look at the house– even if your trash can is kept under the kitchen sink. Remember that you want to send a positive image about every aspect of the house. Kitchen trash does not send a positive message. You may go through more plastic bags than usual, but it will be worth it.

Keeping the House Tidy and Neat
Not everyone makes his or her bed every day, but when selling a house it is recommended that you develop the habit. Pick up papers, do not leave empty glasses in the family room, keep everything freshly dusted and vacuumed. Try your best to have it look like a model home – a home with furniture but nobody really lives there.

Remember Why You Are Doing All of This – to get out from under and upside-down house, to avoid the nasty long-term affects of a Michigan Foreclosure, and to prevent your lender(s) from coming after you for what they lose on the house.

Ann

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Preparing to Sell The House – Part 1 of 2

Ok, you’ve realized you can’t keep your house due to a hardship that isn’t going away. But you may fear you can’t sell it either because of the down market we have right now in Michigan.

While we can’t help make your hardship go away so you can stay in the house and stop the pending Michigan foreclosure, we can help you sell the house in this market. We will hook you up with an experienced Realtor (one of our Elite Agents who know how to make things happen. However, they will need help & cooperation from you to attract a buyer.

This BLOG post is part one of two with tips you can do to help your house sell. After reading this post and part 2 next week, I am sure you will want to know more. We can hook you up with one of our Elite Realtors to find a buyer and we will negotiate your short sale. Give us a call so we can get working on this with you.

Showing the House to Potential Buyers
Your house should always be available to show, even though it may occasionally be inconvenient for you. Let your listing agent put a lock box in a convenient place, to make it easy for other agents to show the house to buyers. Otherwise, agents will have to schedule appointments, which is an inconvenience. Most will just skip your house to show the house to someone else who is more cooperative. Yes, it can be inconvenient, but not nearly as devastating as a Michigan foreclosure.

Most agents will call and give you at least a couple of hours notice before showing your property. If you refuse to let them show it at that time, they will just skip your house. Even if they come back another time, it will probably be with different buyers and you may have just lost a chance to sell the house.

Why You Should Not Be At The House
Buyers will feel like intruders if you are at the house when they visit, and they might not be as receptive toward viewing the house. Visit the local coffee house, yogurt shop, or take the kids to the local park. If you absolutely cannot leave, try to remain in an out of the way area of the house and do not move from room to room. Do not volunteer any information, but do answer any questions the agent may ask.

Lighting
When you know someone is coming by to tour the house, turn on all the indoor and outdoor lights – even during the day. At night, a lit house gives a “homey” impression when viewed from the street. During the daytime, turning on the lights prevents harsh shadows from sunlight and it brightens up any dim areas. Your house looks more homey and cheerful with the lights on.

Remember Why You Are Doing All of This – to get out from under and upside-down house, to avoid the nasty long-term affects of a Michigan Foreclosure, and to prevent your lender(s) from coming after you for what they lose on the house.

Next week – Part 2 (more tips)

Ann

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Please Tell Your Realtor

Yesterday I talked to one seller who hasn’t told his Realtor® he is 4 months behind on his loan. I talked to a Realtor® yesterday also  (different house) about his listing that was in a Michigan foreclosure and he didn’t know it. WOW!

OK, let’s get this straight – please! If you decide to work with a Realtor® that is not part of our team (who’ve we’ve trained the correct way to work short sales), you need to at least watch this video and learn how to qualify your Realtor® to be sure he/she knows how to negotiate short sales.  And, before you sign the listing agreement PLEASE let him know if you are behind on payments or facing a Michigan foreclosure.

You need to give her an opportunity to help you. Also, don’t feel you’re locked into a listing. Any broker (the Realtor’s® “boss”) will release a distressed seller from a listing when better options are available to them. Be honest, tell her what’s going on, get her opinion, and get the opinion of someone who specializes (full time) in foreclosures (um, that would be our team). Shameless plug? Yeah, I know but hey, where else are you going to turn for the truth about foreclosure in Michigan?

Joel

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It’s Your Short Sale… Is Your Realtor Qualified?

Who better to answer this question about how qualified your Realtor is to negotiate your short sale besides Michigan’s premiere Short Sale Negotiator and Trainer?

Joel will teach you the exact questions to ask so you can learn your Realtor’s chances of helping you with your short sale so you can avoid a Michigan foreclosure.

Check out the video on this page.

Joel

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We Help Realtors® Win Too

By now you know that one of the things we do is work with your bank to negotiate a discount (aka short sale) so your house can sell and you can get back better times as fast as possible (and also avoid a Michigan foreclosure).

There is a part of this equation that we don’t talk about much on this blog and that is the Realtor®.

Most Realtors® do not know how to successfully negotiate a short sale. They might think they do, but they don’t. We know because Joel has State-approved course that teaches them how to do it. Of course after only 3 hours of training, they’ve got far to go to become affective. They simply fall into the many traps that are out there for the inexperienced.

Did you know that we have 3 ways we work with a Realtors®?

If you have your house listed, have your Realtor give us a call to see how we can help. However, if the Realtor® has already messed things up with the bank, we won’t take your case on so the sooner we talk to him/her the better.

Here is a testimonial we received from a Realtor® after a recent closing. I thought it was important for you to know that the Realtor® wins in their interactions with us just like you do.

“I had very limited success with short sales and had decided not to list them anymore. Then some of my friends found themselves in a foreclosure situation. They were despondent and ready to give up, so I reluctantly agreed to list their home. After several months of getting nowhere with the bank, I hooked up with Great Lakes Home Solutions.

Within days they had negotiated terms with the first and second mortgage banks and had a green light to sell the home at a very reasonable price. I ended up bringing the buyer in and we closed within one month of sending my buyer’s offer to them.

Free of the home that they could not afford, and with a statement showing zero debt owed to the bank, the sellers have gone from depressed to excited about the future.

Everyone on the team is very professional and they show genuine concern for the people they work with. They are a true pleasure to deal with and have filled a gap in my real estate career by enabling me to deal effectively with short sale clients. I now look forward to short sale listings!”

Curt Hausser, Appleland Realty

Ann

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