The Equator system may finally be showing signs of helping the short sale process, however here is yet another example of how Bank of America is responsible for the UNservicing of America's homeowners!
Caught in HAFA Hell...A Bank of America HAFA MESS!
On March 30, one of of my short sale listings went under deposit. By the end of April, this Bank of America short sale had gotten all the way to the very end of the short sale process (on Equator) and all was well. We were expecting an approval and we were getting ready to close....
NOT SO FAST!
On May 8 my client was moved into the new HAFA (Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives) program.
The HAFA program (from government - "for the people") was designed to "streamline" the short sale process.
Just like any government program, HAFA has proved a miserable failure at streamlining anything. For almost 4 months we have chased this short sale through Bank of America's HAFA department.
There are several problems:
- HAFA reps insist on ONLY speaking to the homeowner. They are not agent friendly, therefore the client has to do much of their own short sale processing, and agents can rarely get straight answers for their client without asking the client to call in.
- The HAFA line never gets answered, and eventually drops you into a voicemail box, threatening agents to "stay away", but it doesn't really matter who calls, since no one gets a return call anyway. So once you've sent your homeowners to call, have them schedule several long breaks into their schedule for a few days for this activity, and one day they may even reach someone.
- Once you do get a hold of someone - they never knows what's going. Bank of America negotiators HATE HAFA. The HAFA negotiators don't have a clue. In fact if you ever get the pleasure of speaking with these fine folks they will happily share how they dont have enough resources to get the job done, they are overburdened and no-one has really had any training, that there are no real timelines, and hey that's just how it is so hurry up and wait. HAFA negotiators are also incapable of faxing or emailing ANY documentation. The only way they will communicate with the client is via SNAIL MAIL - remember that speedy efficient way of communicating? Thats the only way HAFA does it.
After 4 months of this, my client has finally been successfully approved into the HAFA program. Which leads to our latest problem: We have no idea what the terms of approval are. HAFA has not communicated the terms of approval to us. They cannot fax the approval documents or email them. GET THIS - They cannot even see the approval letter to read it to us over the phone. When we asked for help from Bank of America (non-HAFA) loss mit personnel - we were met with giggles, but no help. We didn't find it so funny ourselves, but at least someone is having a good time over this...
So what to do??? Well we will continue to wait for THE MAILMAN, so that we may all figure out exactly what the last 4 months of frustration actually got us.
So much for the "streamlining"....
Thanks Big Brother for HAFA! Thanks so much for all the "HELP".
*************************************Minna Reid is a full-time, full-service, Connecticut REALTOR®, specializing in short sales, serving central and eastern CT including, but not limited to; Andover, Ashford, Bolton, Chaplin, Columbia, Coventry, East Hartford, Eastford, East Windsor, Ellington, Enfield, Glastonbury, Hebron, Lebanon, Manchester, Mansfield, Marlborough, Somers, South Windsor, Stafford, Tolland, Union, Vernon, Willington and Windham.
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