Professional Driver, Closed Course

Five months ago I talked to a homeowner that wanted to sell her house. She had lost her job, was fortunate to find another right away, but it only paid about 1/2 as what she used to make. She was a perfect candidate for a short sale.

It was never real clear to me why she decided to attempt a short sale herself since we never charge for this (we get paid by the buyer). I guess because it just sounds so simple: List your house with a Realtor®, get your lender to agree to take less than what’s owed.  Maybe she wanted to use her own Realtor® and we only use agents that are hand-picked and specially trained to work with our team.

But you know those car commercials that have the small print that says “professional driver, closed course”? Or “don’t try this at home”? You know, the standard disclaimers. Why those disclaimers? Because the professionals make it look so easy they don’t want you to get hurt trying it on your own.

Well you can probably guess what happened.  She called me yesterday trying to salvage her short sale.  To make a long story short, she had a buyer (which was the only good news), but the buyer wouldn’t pay what the bank wanted because the bank thought it was worth more.  This rarely happens on our cases (because we have our own “Bank Bully”).

The second thing wrong with the offer was her second mortgage wanted much more than the first mortgage would allow them to get.  This often happens with our cases, but because our buyers are cash buyers, by carefully working with both mortgage companies and the title company, this can also be eliminated.

Long story short, if she had brought us in early on, she’d be out from under this house and very likely would have thousands of dollars of debt forgiven.  As it stands now, unless she can raise $10,000 right away, she’ll have two mortgage companies after her for all of the money they will lose (likely over $40,000).

Unfortunately, it was much too late and too much had gone wrong for us to get involved to fix things for her.  The moral?  Keep the short sale business to the professionals who get 70-80% of their offers approved.  And of course “don’t try this at home”.


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