OUR NEW WEB SITE IS UP AND RUNNING…PLEASE STOP BY…THAT IS WHERE WE WILL BE FROM NOW ON! See you there!!
OUR NEW WEB SITE IS UP AND RUNNING…PLEASE STOP BY…THAT IS WHERE WE WILL BE FROM NOW ON! See you there!!
In psychology, a first impression is the event when one person first encounters another person and forms a mental image of that person. It can sometimes form an accurate representation of the person, depending on the observer and the person being observed.
So, let’s put this in context of real estate. Let’s say you have 2 identical houses…right down to color on the front door. House A has manicured grounds, shrubs are trimmed, grass is mowed, the porch is freshly painted, new garage door and so on…House B…lawn is high, shrubs are over grown, front porch has pealing paint and the garage door is dented. Now what would your first impression be? Well, of course house A is pulled together in side and out…house B, owners are lazy, don’t have the money…you get the point here too.
But when you walk in…house A is totally unkept…clothes everywhere, carpets have not been vacuumed in months, dust all over the place, kitchen is grimy and dirty. House B…is spotless in side…kitchen is updated, bath rooms are as well…gleaming hardwood floors…Do you get where I am going? When you are selling your house you have to get the people through the door to see the home! House A would have had 10 more showings in one day then House B…BUT House B would have been the one that sold…it may have taken them longer but it would have sold and I am sure over asking price.
SO you have the entire package…outside and inside looks amazing! You have listened to your Realtor…you have done everything we have asked…you have taken the time to get the work done…it may have taken you a month or so to do it…but the over all reward in the end would be shorter time on the market and more money in your pocket! If you think that people are going to pay what YOU think your house is worth and you have not shown an investment in your home…I think you might be mistaken. In this market we are having in WNY right now…houses that are priced under $300,000 are flying off the shelf! They are selling over asking price. The old saying is….Location, Location, Location…but the true of the matter is, Location, Condition and Price…We have successfully sold homes this selling season under a week, sometimes in a day, because the homeowner has trusted us, listened to us and respected our professional opinion. and we have done our job to get the house SOLD.
When we walk thru your door, we want the same thing as you…to sell your home and get you where you need to be for your next home. That is why we are and have been Career Realtors. So…I just ask you this…if you ask a Realtor to come to your home and give you advise…please listen to us…would you pull your own teeth or would you go to a dentist? Have a great day!
In the WNY market we do not find as many SHort Sales as other area’s in country. But here is some information in case you were wondering!
The short sale process can be very complex. Every bank and investor has a slightly different program and set of guidelines they follow. Since each investor has different rules and guidelines, it can help you considerably to find out who the investor is before starting the process.
Whether you are a homeowner in need of help with a short sale or an agent trying to help a homeowner, one of the best things you can do is to understand the situation you are getting into. A key piece of this short sale puzzle is finding out who actually “owns” the loan not just who services the loan.
Understanding the Back-end Process
To understand short sales, you need a basic knowledge of the back-end process of the mortgage market. A few years ago, when the market was booming, mortgages would be originated by a servicer such as Wells Fargo and then sold between the big mortgage investors like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Today, in most cases, you are dealing with a servicer like Wells Fargo or Bank of America that “service” the loan but do not actually own the loan. The bank who originally lent the money is unlikely to still own it unless it is a small community or regional bank. In fact, Bank of America and Wells, the two biggest servicers, only own about 8-10% of their portfolio. The rest of their inventory is made up of loans they service for other investors. The investor guidelines ultimately determine whether to provide relocation money on the short sale, if there will be a debt release on the sale and also define a slew of other details.
How to Find Out Who Owns Your Loan
1.) First, you can look on your mortgage statement. If the loan is FHA backed it will have an FHA MI line-item on your statement that usually says” FHA insurance”. You can also look at your original Deed of Trust, as it will have your FHA case number on it. If you want to see if your property is owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, you can also find it directly under the loan look-up tools available on their websites. Here are the links:
Fannie Mae Freddie Mac
2.) If your loan is not owned by one of these three entities you can ask the servicer of the loan who owns it – though they will not always tell you verbally. You could also research it by getting the title pulled. Chain of title will not always be conclusive either. However, in many cases, it has helped make it easier to “track” down the investor. In some cases, it could also be owned by the servicer; Wells Fargo could be the servicer and also the investor on the loan. This is called a “portfolio” loan. You can also request for your servicer to disclose in writing who the investor is if they will not verbally disclose that information. This is called a “qualified written request, or QWR”. On its website, the U.S. Department of Urban Housing and Development (HUD) provides a sample QWR and gives a brief explanation of this process.
3.) Another way to find out who owns your loan is through the Mortgage Electronic Registration System, Inc. (MERS). MERS is a company that was created by the mortgage banking industry. It maintains a database that tracks mortgages for its members as they are transferred from bank to bank. You can look up a loan to see if they have the investor information here.
Different Guidelines Used by Different Investors
The three biggest mortgage investors in the country are Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and FHA. VA is another big investor but does not have a portfolio nearly as big as the other three mentioned. With the exception of FHA/VA (because they insure their own loans), there also could be a mortgage insurer who provided insurance on the loan. The reason this is important to understand is that, when there is a servicer, investor and mortgage insurer on the loan, all three of them have to agree to the terms of the short sale. It is very important to find out from the very beginning of the process the identity of the actual end-investor on the loan. An FHA-backed mortgage has a totally different process for a short sale compared to a Fannie Mae loan.
Every investor has a different set of guidelines they set for short sales and foreclosure procedures so you have to understand that ultimately it is up to the end investor-not the servicer. The servicer has their own guidelines but they do not make the final decision. It is important that you know who the investor is because there will be times when you may have an issue with a servicer and you have to go to the investor to get it resolved.
There have been many transactions where the servicer and I disagreed on a particular issue and I went to the investor and got the approval. So make sure going in to this situation you know everyone involved and go to the servicer’s and the investor’s website to get familiar with their guidelines and any specific documents they may require.
On your third party authorization letter (the letter that gives you permission to speak to the bank on the homeowners’ behalf) always put the investor as well as the servicer so that if later you have to reach out to the investor you already have permission from the seller to do so. This also puts the servicer on alert that you know what you are doing and have already researched finding out who the end-investor is.
Well not really dumb and crazy…just maybe a little…controlling!
Would you pull your own teeth? Or would you go to a dentist?
A well-known legal profession axiom:
“The attorney who represents himself is dumb and has a fool as a client.”
We believe this also applies if you attempt to sell your own home as a For Sale by Owner (FSBO). In today’s volatile market, you need an experienced professional!
You and your family need a skilled negotiator
In today’s market, hiring a talented negotiator could save you thousands, perhaps tens of thousands of dollars. Each step of the way – from the original offer, to the possible re-negotiation of that off after a home inspection, to the possible cancellation of the deal based on a troubled appraisal – you need someone who can keep the deal together until it closes.
Here is a list of some of the people with whom your agent will potentially negotiate on your behalf:
•The buyer’s agent
•The buyer’s attorney
•The home inspection company
•The termite company
•The buyer’s lender
•The title company
•The town or municipality
•The buyer’s buyer
•Your bank (in the case of a short sale)
How do you know if an agent negotiates well?
Realize that when an agent is negotiating their commission with you, they are negotiating their own salary; the salary that keeps a roof over their family’s head; the salary that puts food on their family’s table. If they are quick to take less when negotiating for themselves and their families, what makes you think they will not act the same way when negotiating for you and your family? If they were Clark Kent when negotiating with you, they will not turn into Superman when negotiating with the buyer in your deal.
You need a great negotiator. We believe that famous sayings become famous because they are true. You get what you pay for. Just like a good accountant or a good attorney, a good agent will save you money…not cost you money.
With the housing market beginning to heat up, we are afraid some sellers may consider trying to sell their house as a For Sale By Owner (FSBO). This week we will be posting on the reasons that we believe trying to sell on your own may be a mistake. – KCM Crew and The Marie E Mancuso Team
Anyone in the real estate industry for any length of time realizes that the education required and the resources necessary to be a true industry professional have dramatically increased over the last two decades. In today’s volatile market, it is necessary to have a true real estate professional if you want to sell your home for the best possible price in the shortest amount of time – and make sure the deal gets to the closing table!
The National Association of Realtors (NAR) has recently reported that as many as 15% of all deals never make it to closing. Tighter lending requirements, stronger disclosure forms and tougher appraisal standards have all contributed to the more treacherous minefield through which today’s seller must navigate.
The good news is homeowners have realized that attempting to sell their home on their own is an arduous process best left to an industry expert. According to NAR’s most recent Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, the percentage of sellers selling on their own, known as For Sale By Owners (FSBOs), has dropped in half over the last 20 years; from 19% to 9%.
If you are selling a home in today’s confusing real estate market, it is best to take on the services of a local real estate expert. He/she will guide you through each step of the transaction thereby increasing the likelihood that there will be fewer inconveniences for you and your family.
Let’s be honest…When I had my condo, and it was time to sell it I had my real estate license. I didn’t have a lot of equity built up…partly because I had only lived there 2 years…and Condo’s don’t appreciate as much and as fast as homes do. So I said to my mother that if the property didn’t sell by Monday, that I would put it in the ML…well it sold Sunday night! We were so happy…and it turned out to be a nightmare! At that point i realize how truley valuable having a Realtor list your property was and IS! When you hire Marie and I, we take all the worry and stress out of selling your home…this week we will focus on FSBO’s and why you should list with a broker. Once again remember…we have a shortage of listing inventory in the WNY area…if you house is priced right, condition is good to great and you have a good/great location…it should sell quick! We are selling our listings at a 98-101% of asking price! AMAZING!!! Please read this week and send me your questions! We would love to hear from you!
This blog prides itself on the quality of real estate information we deliver each and every day. We try to gather empirical evidence to validate the positions we take. We do not use just an anecdotal story to make a point. We also do not get caught up in the sensationalism. However, today will be different.
We can’t resist commenting on the story which appeared in the Wall Street Journal a while back regarding Colby Sambrotto, the founder and former CEO of forsalebyowner.com. It seems the founding father and lifelong evangelist of the concept of selling your home without a real estate agent was forced to hire a broker to sell his home after failing at what he preaches others should do.
After failing to sell his NYC apartment on his own as a For Sale By Owner (FSBO), Sambrotto hired a broker and paid a 6% commission in order to get the job done. His personal experience helps refute some of the myths Sambrotto has been espousing for over a decade. Let’s look at two of those myths:
Myth #1 – You Will Pocket More Money Selling on Your Own
Most FSBO sites say you can save the commission by selling on your own. What happened in Sambrotto’s sale?
From the WSJ article:
“The broker, Jesse Buckler, said he told Mr. Sambrotto the apartment in the Lion’s Head building on West 19th Street near Sixth Avenue was priced too low and wasn’t drawing the right buyers.
By May, it went into contract, he said, after attracting multiple offers. It closed in the last few days for $150,000 more than the original asking price.”
Myth #2 – The Internet Alone Can Sell Your Home
Many have said that, with the introduction of home search on the internet, hiring an agent is no longer a necessity. What happened to the FSBO guru when he attempted to only depend on the internet?
From the WSJ article:
“Looking to move his family to the suburbs, [Mr. Sambrotto] said he carefully staged his apartment for sale himself, and put it on the market. But after using a mix of websites to publicize his apartment, he said he had only ‘middling success’ and switched to a broker because many buyers were so reliant on brokers.”
There is a reason the real estate industry has been around for centuries: it performs a valuable service.
Some are questioning whether the current rally in the real estate market will fall victim to financial uncertainty regarding the impending debt ceiling debate and sequestration. However, many experts believe housing will be able to maintain its current momentum.
In a March 2013 report, Someone Say House Party?, analysts at Bank of America/ Merril Lynch concluded:
“We believe that the gain in home prices can persist despite subpar economic growth this year…Absent a significant weakening in the economy with negative payrolls, we think the housing recovery can continue. The combination of low inventory, high affordability and improving expectations for home prices provide powerful momentum for the housing sector.”
The National Association for Business Economics (NABE) was recently quoted in HousingWire as reporting:
“While gross domestic product is expected to be negatively impacted by all the uncertainty surrounding the nation’s impending debt ceiling debate and the risks of sequestration, the housing sector is expected to continue its upward trajectory.”
Housing has been a tailwind to the overall national economy for over a year. We agree with the experts in the belief that this will continue moving forward.