Saturday, November 7, 2009


Some banks have finally figured out that they can save approximately $40,000 in holding and maintence costs if they allow a property to sell “short” (the sales price is less than the loan or loans owed against it), than if they let it go to foreclosure. There have been many obstacles that have hindered lenders from doing this sooner, namely the various moratoriums against foreclosures, investors that have been unwilling or unable to accept discounted amounts, loan packages with scattered beneficiaries, and the biggest culprit, the borrower attempting to get a loan modification. Expect some of these hindrances to be cleared away in 2010. Many properties have languished for months and months, as homeowners live payment free while negotiating a modification. See the next article for more information on that. Suffice it to say that this process will be streamlined and more short sales will begin to happen. This is good news for the inventory, but will be more of a challenge to close escrow because all the liens, judgments and taxes must be paid or negotiated for a release on this specific property.
(Property taxes are never negotiated; they must be brought current by someone.) These can be very complicated transactions and require skill and knowledge.


Experienced Probate Realtor

Probate is the legal process of administering the estate of a deceased person by resolving all claims and distributing the deceased person’s real and personal property under the valid will.

Probate generally last several months and often times over a year for all property to be distributed.

Disposing of real property in a probate requires the Realtor to understand what probate is, and to be sure to market the property in the best interest of the estate following procedures set down by the court. The Realtor also needs to be mindful of the role as agent only for the estate and not become entangled in any legal issues or disputes between the heirs. Keeping notes, documenting marking efforts and being able to show the property was exposed to all interest parties at times is critical should things get contentious.

I often see probate properties treated as normal sales and they are not. Posting a property as pending or back-up in the MLS, installing a “SOLD” sign prior to court approval, not posting a court date for properties subject to overbidding are just a few of the errors made that can cause the estate lost dollars and maybe even more importantly court delays. The agents duty is to the estate only, not to a buyer, beneficiary, creditor etc.

To avoid probate we all should consider having a family trust. However if your only option is probate, the attorneys and administrators need to work with Realtors with verifiable probate sales experience and referrals. Please call me if you need a referral to an attorney to set up a trust or if you need and experienced probate Realtor.

Experienced Short Sale Agents

If you or someone you know is having mortgage problems, give us a call. We can tell you about all your options.