"Living in the Real World" ~ Lola's Log


It's Been A Long Time 'a Comin...Short Sale at the Closing Table

St. Petersburg, FL - Kenwood-Melrose Community - A Lovely multi-family home in distress is at long last on it's way to a new owner!

This one's been on (again, off again) the negotiating table for nearly a year...an example of everything that can go right and wrong in this tricky market, and the New World of short sales and bank-owned property purchases.

The seller has become a dear friend, after several difficult years of falling rents and rising repairs on her hoped-for future-retirement property.  This was one of the short sale stories you don't often hear about--legitimate claim of not only financial loss, but health issues, employment issues, and the like.

This was an example of "The Little Guy" who has been so thoroughly decimated by market conditions and shrinking property values.

After several years of trying to stay above water by renting the units, about a year and half ago she threw in the towel and we put the place on the market--first at what she owed, soon after as a short sale.

Last November a good buyer was found--not here in Florida, but way up the coast, nine States away--he offered a reasonable amount, conventional financing, which at that point could still be had (or so he was told) for less than 20% down.  He had the means to do this, and it's worth it, because his own mother will be living on the property, just down the street from the buyer's sister.

The offer was presented to the lender for approval, and we waiting...and waited...through the holidays.  Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, New Years, Chinese New Year...

Weekly calls brought no results--this was neither an owner-occupied residence on either the buyer or the seller's side, so it was very low priority for the bank to review.

After two months I was told to enter the file into the new Equator system and things began to pick up--we had an approval by April (hurrah!), but then the issues on the buyer's side began--they would no longer apprvoe a loan at the 15-18% he had wanted to put down--it had to be the full 20%.  So, we re-negotiated a lower price--plenty of room, based on the intial appraisal.

And then it happened--as we were preparing to rejoice, apparently on our way to closing--the file just got dropped by the buyer's lender.  We called, called, called, and nothing--we had the nerve to apply for a loan during the originator's MONTH of vacation, so she failed to touch the file for 30 days...while our short sale approval time ticked away.

We requested and received one extension...then a second, while the loan officer suddenly jammed her file into gear and requested docs, docs, more docs from the buyer.  They wanted everything, including his first-born, last BM, and what he had for breakfast the night that Elvis died (was reported missing...?).  And still, no loan commitment...as the deadline for closing came yet again...and went. 

Then, the ultimate insult--the loan processor actually asked my buyer if he was 'disabled'...can they do that?!  I think there may be laws about that sort of thing--but she did--because after all of their slapstick handling of the file, he had a few challenges with letters and faxes.

So the approval expired, and over a month ago I was forced to re-initiate the short sale approval, from the beginning (see "My Bank of America Hate Song", below).  Frustrated?  Just a little...

The good news is, between the first and second appraisal the market has come up just a smidge, enough that I had to re-negotiate all over again.

The better news is that it's nearly over...at long last!


st pete: Historical Mirror Lake District ~ St. Petersburg Florida ~ Vibrant and Artsy Downtown - 05/19/08 12:18 PM
Mirror Lake-now considered an Historical District, is home to many of the most familiar of St. Pete's well-known sites, such as, well--Mirror Lake, the Lyceum, the Coliseum, the famous Lawn Bowling and Shuffleboard Courts, and the old St. Petersburg High School, which has been converted to condos.  Baywalk is also within ... (6 comments)

st pete: Eclectic Arts, Architecture, and Nature in Downtown St. Petersburg, Florida - 05/09/08 11:40 PM
A sampling of some of the many fine features of beautiful St. Petersburg, Florida--no longer "Heaven's Waiting Room", but home to the unique architecture of the historic Old Northeast, the Arts-friendly and flourishing in the downtown area, sail-happy Vinoy Basin, and nature abundant throughout the city.
Take a short video jaunt ... (0 comments)

st pete: There are Some Really Great Rentals in North St. Pete--Kenwood Area - 02/28/08 11:25 AM
A Video Tour of a lovely Kenwood area home with Mother-in-Law apartment, both are available right now!
The apartment is only $700/month INCLUDING ALL utilities--that's power, water, sewer, and garbage, which means a significant savings on deposits alone. 
The main house is an adorable dollhouse--with a fireplace, formal dining, and interior laundry ... (0 comments)

bofa: My "Bank of America Hate Song" (Dance to Follow...) - 08/31/10 02:08 PM
Nine Months, Three Days and Twenty-one Hours
Is the Time it Takes
For Me to Finally
(but at least I try to do it with a smile!!)
(Open THIS window to hear the original Fight Song for Notre Dame--it's a classic!)

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Loretta J. Buckner
Your "Real" Estate Consultant for Life

Comment balloon 7 commentsLoretta Buckner • November 04 2010 12:06PM
It's Been A Long Time 'a Comin… Short Sale at the Closing Table
St. Petersburg, FL - Kenwood-Melrose Community - A Lovely multi-family home in distress is at long last on it's way to a new owner! This one's been on (again, off again) the negotiating table for nearly a year… an example of… more