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Short sale property has four liens, good grief!

Short sales can be highly challenging, particularly when tax liens are involved, but there are many options available to overcome the obstacles, even when they appear insurmountable.

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short sale liens

Short sale with multiple tax liens

I just came across this short sale query; the listing agent seeks advice on her short sale transaction because she is at an impasse—after about 16 weeks of negotiating.

Here’s what she has to say:

4 Liens and No Cooperation

Short sale with four liens:
Bank of America first lien will only allow $734 to the second lien holder.
SLS (second) wants $1500.
One credit card from a debt collector for $2700.
One helicopter bill for a life flight (person is now deceased) for $3500.
The seller is supposed to receive a $5000 incentive from Bank of America.
The property is only valued at $38,000.
What should I do?

Processing a short sale with multiple liens can be extremely challenging. That’s why it is always a good idea for short sale agents to work with the seller and the title company to determine existing liens at the time that the short sale listing is taken.

Sadly, there are certain short sale listings which should be avoided despite the fact that short sale listing agents often feel compelled to help each and every distressed borrower that they encounter. Short sale listings to avoid include those with an imminent foreclosure sale date, those with many liens, and those with sellers not interested in providing paperwork in a timely manner.

Understand Available Options

In the case of this short sale, the seller and the listing agent still have a few options available to them:

  1. The seller (who the listing agents states is destitute in a part of the inquiry not printed here) can contact a bankruptcy attorney and discuss bankruptcy as a mechanism of addressing the uncollected debts.
  2. The agent can work with the title company on items three and four. In certain parts of the United States, Title Insurance Companies with work with agents and collectors in order to clear uncollected debt from the title reports prior to closing.
  3. The seller can, with the permission of Bank of America, credit the entire $5000 towards the other liens, and those items can be paid off at closing (note that there will still be a small shortage).

When working short sales, there are always options available to short sale sellers in difficult and challenging situations. However, seeing a challenging short sale to the closing table can be very rewarding.

Many agents might argue that this challenging short sale (with a sales price of $38,000) is not worth negotiating, since the commission paid is quite small. That’s a tough call, and it’s not mine to make. But, it is vital that when an agent takes a short sale listing, he (or she) is 100% certain that they know what you are getting into and understand the liens that need to be addressed. Short sale listing agents need to be certain not to bit off more then can chew; they may want to think twice before they agree to negotiate short sales that may not be worth the time and effort.

Melissa Zavala is the Broker/Owner of Broadpoint Properties and Head Honcho of Short Sale Expeditor®, and Chief Executive Officer of Transaction 911. Before landing in real estate, she had careers in education and publishing. Most recently, she has been able to use her teaching and organizational skills while traveling the world over—dispelling myths about the distressed property market, engaging and motivating real estate agents, and sharing her passion for real estate. When she isn’t speaking or writing, Melissa enjoys practicing yoga, walking the dog, and vacationing at beach resorts.

Austin

Austin tops the list of best places to buy a home

When looking to buy a home, taking the long view is important before making such a huge investment – where are the best places to make that commitment?

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Looking at the bigger picture

(REALUOSO.COM) – Let us first express that although we are completely biased about Texas (we’re headquartered here, I personally grew up here), the data is not – Texas is the best. That’s a scientific fact. There’s a running joke in Austin that if there is a list of “best places to [anything],” we’re on it, and the joke causes eye rolls instead of humility (we’re sore winners and sore losers in this town).

That said, SelfStorage.com dug into the data and determined that the top 12 places to buy a home are currently Texas and North Carolina (and Portland, I guess you’re okay too or whatever).

They examined the nerdiest of numbers from the compound annual growth rate in inflation-adjusted GDP to cost premium, affordability, taxes, job growth, and housing availability.

“Buying a house is a big decision and a big commitment,” the company notes. “Although U.S. home prices have risen in the long term, the last decade has shown that path is sometimes full of twists, turns, dizzying heights and steep, abrupt falls. Today, home prices are stabilizing and increasing in most areas of the U.S.”

Click here to continue reading the list of the 12 best places to buy a home…

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Housing News

Average age of houses on the rise, so is it now better or worse to buy new?

With aging housing in America, are first-time buyers better off buying new or existing homes? The average age of a home is rising, as is the price of new housing, so a shift could be upon us.

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aging housing inventory

The average home age is higher than ever

(REALUOSO.COM) – In a survey from the Department of Housing and Urban Development American Housing Survey (AHS), the median age of homes in the United States was 35 years old. In Texas, homes are a bit younger with the median age between 19 – 29 years. The northeast has the oldest homes, with the median age between 50 – 61 years. In 1985, the median age of a home was only 23 years.

With more houses around 40 years old, the National Association of Realtors asserts that homeowners will have to undertake remodeling and renovation projects before selling unless the home is sold as-is, in which case the buyer will be responsible to update their new residence. Even homeowners who aren’t selling will need to consider remodeling for structural and aesthetic reasons.

Prices of new homes on the rise

Newer homes cost more than they used to. The price differential between new homes and older homes has increased from 10 percent traditionally to around 37 percent in 2014. This is due to rising construction costs, scarcity of lots, and a low inventory of new homes that doesn’t meet the demand.

Click here to continue reading this story…

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Housing News

Are Realtors the real loser in the fight between Zillow Group and Move, Inc.?

The last year has been one of dramatic and rapid change in the real estate tech sector, but Realtors are vulnerable, and we’re worried.

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zillow move

Why Realtors are vulnerable to these rapid changes

(REALUOSO.COM) – Corporate warfare demands headlines in every industry, but in the real estate tech sector, a storm has been brewing for years, which in the last year has come to a head. Zillow Group and Move, Inc. (which is owned by News Corp. and operates ListHub, Realtor.com, TopProducer, and other brands) have been competing for a decade now, and the race has appeared to be an aggressive yet polite boxing match. Last year, the gloves came off, and now, they’ve drawn swords and appear to want blood.

Note: We’ll let you decide which company plays which role in the image above.

So how then, does any of this make Realtors the victims of this sword fight? Let’s get everyone up to speed, and then we’ll discuss.

1. Zillow poaches top talent, Move/NAR sues

It all started last year when the gloves came off – Move’s Chief Strategy Officer (who was also Realtor.com’s President), Errol Samuelson jumped ship and joined Zillow on the same day he phoned in his resignation without notice. He left under questionable circumstances, which has led to a lengthy legal battle (wherein Move and NAR have sued Zillow and Samuelson over allegations of breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, and misappropriation of trade secrets), with the most recent motion being for contempt, which a judge granted to Move/NAR after the mysterious “Samuelson Memo” surfaced.

Salt was added to the wound when Move awarded Samuelson’s job to Move veteran, Curt Beardsley, who days after Samuelson left, also defected to Zillow. This too led to a lawsuit, with allegations including breach of contract, violation of corporations code, illegal dumping of stocks, and Move has sought restitution. These charges are extremely serious, but demanded slightly less attention than the ongoing lawsuit against Samuelson.

2. Two major media brands emerge

Last fall, the News Corp. acquisition of Move, Inc. was given the green light by the feds, and this month, Zillow finalized their acquisition of Trulia.

…Click here to continue reading this story…

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