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When working with a Seller on purchasing a short sale it is very important to know the terms and conditions that the new buyer must uphold with the Homeowners Associations. Recently, we started working on a short sale wherein the Seller owed the Homeowner Association a fee of $457.00 per month and another Homeowner Association issue wherein they would only allow the Buyer to be an owner occupant. The Homeowner Association claims that the percentage of rentals have been filled and since that quota was met, this leaves only owner occupants eligible to purchase the property. Now your pool of buyers has been decreased greatly leaving only homeowners to buy the property.

The first thing you need to do when obtaining a short sale or any type of deal from a Seller, that you are interested in purchasing the property to fix and flip or just rent, is to obtain the Homeowner Associations Bylaws. There are Bylaws and Declarations that the Homeowners Associations are to provide to a new buyer. Here are some of the things you must look for to prevent any show-stoppers: Read More→

Many of my students repeatedly ask me, “Do I need both the Wife and the ex-Husband’s financial documents when negotiating a short sale?” I let them know that there are several variables that I need in order to give them an answer. In order to have a clear understanding of whose financials I need to collect, I need the following information: Property Appraiser sheet (whose name is listed as owner?), a copy of the last recorded Deed (whose name is on there?), a copy of the Property Settlement and Judgment of Divorce (who was awarded the property and does it contain verbiage stating that a certified copy of the Judgment of Divorce and/or Property Settlement can be recorded in lieu of a Quit Claim Deed).

FOR EXAMPLE: Husband and Wife bought the house together with a Mortgage and Note from Wells Fargo. They then get a divorce and the Wife is awarded the house with no interest from the ex-Husband.

When Sellers get a divorce, typically one party will say they want the house and that person will be solely responsible for the debt on the house. A good attorney will ensure that there is specific verbiage in the Judgment of Divorce and/or Property Settlement which states that the Wife is going to be responsible for the debt on the home and that the ex-Husband will Quit Claim his interest by Deed over to the Wife so that he is no longer on the property. In addition, a good attorney will add verbiage in the Judgment of Divorce and/or Property Settlement which states that should the Husband not sign a Quit Claim Deed to transfer the property over to the Wife, then a certified copy of this Document (Judgment of Divorce and/or Property Settlement) may be filed with the Recorder’s Department in lieu of (instead of) a Quit Claim Deed to transfer the property. Read More→

What Makes or Breaks a Short Sale?

Posted on December 6, 2013 by

Many Realtors and Investors really don’t know the secrets to a successful short sale. They think just because they make an offer close to market value that their short sale should go thru! Obviously, that is not correct. The secret to a successful short sale consists of several things including 1) listing price and 2) broker price opinion/appraisal on the property.

Let’s start with the listing price. How do real estate agents get paid? By commission right? Are they not taught that they need to list the house as high as possible to get the best price for the seller and the highest commission for themselves? So … when a Realtor is not trained how to do a short sale, what price do you think they list the house at? They list it for as high as possible. Unknowingly, they are doing a disservice to the sellers, buyers and themselves; as it is the Short Sale Lender that tells the agents, sellers and buyers how much they are willing to sell the property for. So, when the Realtor lists the property high, it encourages the BPO agent, who is also a Realtor, to try and reach for the list price. Remember, they use to be Realtors receiving commission and they too would list the property as high as possible. The only designation that I hold as a Real Estate Broker is SFR which stands for Short Sale Foreclosure Resource. I took this class just to see what the Realtors are being taught on short sales. I was impressed that they also recommend that the property be listed LOW not high so that the BPO Agent will provide the Short Sale Lender with their own value instead of reaching for list price. Just like an appraiser, they are also encouraged to reach for the list price since 99% of the time appraisals do not come in higher than either list price and/or the purchase price which a buyer is willing to pay. Read More→

Recently we were working a short sale through Nationstar who requested that the Seller sign a document allowing Nationstar’s affiliate, Auction.com, to sell our short sale. Yes, you heard me correctly! We already had a buyer, submitted all the financials to Lender, and had the BPO (Broker Price Opinion). However, they hadn’t countered the buyer yet. The form that my agent and her Seller signed stated that Auction.com was allowed to hold an auction on the property and should my agent be a dual agent on both sides, that she would not get paid more than 3% commission. First off, I want all Brokers to be aware that agents do not have the right to sign away commission unless the Brokers previously allowed this right, nor do they have the right to sign away the Broker’s Exclusive Listing Agreement terms and conditions.

I was furious as Auction.com was advertising this house illegally and unethically to the public. They were advertising as Bank Short Sale Approved! Well, if it was approved, I would have already had the approval letter for my existing buyer that had been waiting during this short sale process. In addition, how can a Seller back out of my Buyer’s contract and enter into a contract with the winning bidder’s contract without having some legal ramifications? The winning bidder was to pay 5% to Auction.com for acting as auctioneer, place a deposit immediately with Auction.com plus all the forms that they had to sign which gave away all their rights for inspection with clauses saying that they would have to pay money to Auction.com for cancelling the contract. The highest bid was $80,000 plus $4,000 over and above to the auctioneer for conducting this auction. They forced the Listing Agent to hold their own open house but then reduced our commission as Listing Agent. Read More→

I was just up speaking for Atlanta REIA when a member asked me “isn’t closing short sales back to back illegal?” My answer was NO! He asked me, when did that change? It has never changed. He just didn’t ask the right questions to the right Attorney or Title Company. Closing a short sale back to back can only be done with full disclosure which I always do on my paperwork to the short sale lender and to the “C” Buyer. I provide copies of my purchase agreement which I have signed with my “A” Seller and me as “B” Buyer to the short sale lender. I then provide copies of paperwork that I had signed with my “C” Buyer and me as “B” Seller to my title company. If you are using my paperwork, here is how I disclose the back to back CASH closing. Remember, disclose, disclose, disclose!

1. The “C” Buyer is a cash buyer.

2. The “B” Seller/investor must has signed a form along with the “C” Buyer, stating that they are aware that the “C” Buyer’s money is going to be used to close the first transaction between the “A” Seller who is doing the short sale and the “B” Buyer/Investor who is purchasing the property prior to selling to the “C”/Buyer.

3. In addition, the Title Company and/or Attorney who is writing title insurance on the property, their underwriter has no problem with this type of transaction as long as this form along with the disclosure stated in your purchase agreement to the short sale lender is provided to them for review. Read More→

Don’t Question Having a Mentor… JUST HAVE ONE!

I remember when I decided to quit my job as a legal secretary and become a millionaire in real estate! I started with Carleton Sheets’ course. Once it arrived, I was to read it and take action. Yeah, right! I found that between my J.O.B. (Just Over Broke) and taking care of my children, I was busy and distracted, so the course sat on my shelf collecting dust. About 6 months later, I got a call from Carleton Sheets’ organization asking if I wanted to be in their Mentor Program. How much? They said $2,000.00. At that time, I had to make a crucial decision that would change my life. Did I just want to “dream” about leaving my 9 to 5 job or did I really want to take action and make it happen? I thought about it for a couple of days and I said “YES!!” The training was just the start. I was able to purchase 6 homes following the course. Working in my home environment with so many interruptions was the hardest thing I have ever done in my life! I can tell you one thing, if it wasn’t for the Mentor pushing me… I would have given up and quit!

Just like many of you reading this article, I attended multiple boot camps and ordered over $250,000 worth of courses. The only difference between where I am in real estate and where you are, is that I took action and hired a Mentor to continue to push me forward and hold me accountable. And a Mentor gives you the answers to EVERY question you have! I am only quoting one of my students, “Having Kimberlee is like having personal access to your own magical Real Estate Encyclopedia! She has answers and solutions for everything!” That’s gotta give you some relief right there about what a Mentor can do for you! Everyone learns differently. Some people are visual learners and have to come to a class room and be taught, other people have to physically do a transaction to understand the process, and then some can pick up a book and do exactly as it says in the course and become successful. Read More→

Working an effective short sale can seem impossible if your Seller is not providing you with accurate information. The very first thing I require from all Sellers is a ‘complete’ Seller Information Sheet. My Seller Information Sheet is customized to specifically catch every pertinent fact about the Seller and the house.

Below are several things that I need in order to review the deal and determine my exit strategy as an Investor and/or Realtor. Read More→

Going through a Foreclosure action and losing your home is a very stressful situation for anyone. Until you walk in those shoes yourself, it’s hard for an Investor or Realtor to understand what a Seller is facing in their day to day life. I would like to share how a Seller feels during this process so that you can really begin to understand the Seller’s experience. It IS a scary roller coaster ride and you can help deter them from crashing and burning at the end!

Owning a home has always been the American Dream. Sellers become very emotionally attached to that “dream home.” They work their tails off, save as much money as they can, and make the big purchase. Unfortunately, the adjustable rate mortgage was introduced to our economy which allowed Sellers to purchase the home of their dreams with little money down, interest only payments with the Sellers knowing that in 3 to 5 years they will have to refinance their home to a fixed 30 year mortgage in order to keep it. When the housing market crashed, it affected everyone drastically.

Many people found themselves without a job ie. realtors, mortgage brokers, developers, contractors and many more people in different occupations. Can you image if you had a 700+ credit score and then suddenly you weren’t able to make your payments on your home, car, credit cards, and purchase food or clothing for your family? This is such a humbling experience that many Sellers don’t survive. Everything they have worked for their entire life is gone! This situation has crushed many dreams and is still occurring daily. Read More→

When do you know if you have a great house to purchase, fix and flip? Many investors start out their career looking for fast money. They focus on Wholesaling by looking for deals to get under contract and then wholesale for a $2,000 to $5,000 profit. I’m not saying that you can’t make money in wholesaling; however, you do need to consider all types of real estate transactions such as short sales, lease options, options, and subject to’s in order to find where you can make the most bang for your buck!

My 16 year old son, Taylor, has been involved in my business every since he was able to walk. He is ready to get his first house! We used to put him through windows of vacant houses to unlock doors and get inside so that we could make offers. He has learned so much in my business; many of you heard him speak during my Foreclosures Gone Wild event in Georgia. He is purchasing his 1st house, rehabbing and hiring his friends, then flipping for profit with me, Kimberlee Frank, so he can purchase his first car! Read More→

Working on short sales is always exhilarating when you receive updated title work which shows there are additional liens against the property. Many Realtors, Investors and Short Sale Negotiators aren’t knowledgeable or prepared to fight the fight against Credit Card Liens on short sales. I recommend that the first thing you do when working a short sale is to order a title commitment which will do a search to see if there are any liens on the property. Are you aware that the title companies also do a name search for your Seller and Buyer? When a name search is done against the Seller, any outstanding judgments or liens show up on title. In addition, the title company is to order a lien search against the property for water, sewer, and code violations which cost approximately $140. Due to the cost, this additional lien search is done right before closing. I always recommend that the Realtor or the Investor make a personal call to the water, sewer and code violation departments as soon as they start negotiating their short sale. By making the personal call, you can minimize some costs versus have the title company search for you. Some counties provide this information online. However, don’t depend on your inexperience of checking liens on the property, I would highly recommend that you contact the County Department and talk to a live person for confirmation. Read More→

Facts About Loan Modifications

Posted on March 11, 2013 by

Many of the Sellers that are upside down on their home are stressed out and don’t know what to do. First off, I want all Sellers to know that when they got a loan from the bank their money was given to the bank from an investor. This investor could be a trust, reit, or maybe the government. The bank guaranteed the investor or group of investors a set interest rate. Many Sellers are attempting a loan modification hoping to keep their house. I always ask my Sellers if could wave my wand what do you want from the bank. Most of them will answer that they want the bank to reduce their balance on their loan or they want a certain amount for their monthly payment. Here are some facts I want to share with the Sellers:

  1. During a loan modification the bank is still continuing with the foreclosure.
  2. I have not spoken with a Seller yet that got a reduction in the value of their home on a homesteaded property and I have done over 500 short sales.
  3. The monthly payment the Seller wants makes no sense. They are not considering how much their taxes and insurance is on the property nor are they considering the interest that will be charged for the loan amount. Example: Seller owes $300,00,000 on the loan at 4% for 30 years is $1,432.25 – Yearly Taxes are $3,000 per year $250.00 a month – Insurance is $1,500 per year – $125.00 per month – Total monthly payment NOT INCLUDING HOA (homeowners association dues) would be $1,807.25. Many Sellers want a lower payment than this amount because they can’t afford it.
  4. I have only seen the bank take the monthly payments that they are behind plus interest, late fees and attorney fees and add it to the end of the mortgage and/or change it to a 40 year mortgage. Which would make their monthly payment $1,253.82 on the loan plus taxes and insurance would be $1,628.82.

Read More→

Short Sales Are Sailing

Posted on February 8, 2013 by

Many Investors and Realtors avoid short sales like the plague.  They are definitely missing the boat!  My business specializes primarily in short sales and I have seen an increase in the number of approvals we are getting.  The time line for a short sale varies from 90 to 120 days if you submit the lender a “complete” short sale package.  Since short sales are dominating the market, the Lenders are creating more streamlined processes to conduct smoother short sales.  If you do short sales, then I am quite sure you have heard of the online system called “Equator.”  Equator allows all of the short sale paperwork to be processed electronically through one common venue, versus traditional and random faxes and emails.  Having a file processed online avoids the common objection from the short sale lender of “We didn’t receive the documents.”  Effective January 1, 2013, the newest lender that has started to use Equator is Chase.  The following lenders and servicers are presently using Equator:  1) Bank of America, 2) Chase, 3) Wells Fargo, 4) GMAC, 5) Nationstar, 6) ASC, 7) Carrington Mortgage, and 8) Homeward Residential Services. 

The Equator System assigns applicable tasks to each party (Agent, Negotiator, Closer, etc) including a deadline in which to complete each task.  I like the fact that the lenders can no longer say “Oh, we never got that paperwork.”  However, I don’t like the fact that they are tracking our information.  Nationstar has taken the collection of Buyer’s information to a whole new level.  They require all Buyers to fill out a loan application even though they most likely will not be using Nationstar as a lender.  This application has been mandatory and this has not been waived on any of my files.  If you are a Buyer on any property, you are required to provide your name, address, telephone number, DOB, SS#, assets, employment history and more.  This is regardless if you are purchasing for investment or personal use and if you are getting a mortgage or paying cash.    Read More→

The Short Sale lenders are getting crazier and crazier. That is why you need to stay current with the short sale changes. Approximately 3 years ago, Bank of America was the first short sale lender to start requesting that the new buyer of the property consent to not resell the property for less than 30 days. This statement was included in their short sale approval letter. This statement alone caused a lot of challenges to investors who were still looking to close back to back on transactions. A few short sale lenders thereafter, such as GMAC and Wells Fargo, started adding 60 to 90 day resale clauses on their Arm’s Length Affidavits, but not their short sale approval letters.

Recently, I was in the process of purchasing a property where I needed to get an extension on the short sale approval letter. The reason was that the Homeowner Association advised us that, pursuant to their by-laws, their 35% ownership of investment properties had been reached and only homeowner occupants can purchase the property. The servicer for the lender was Seterus. I received a brand new approval letter for the same exact buyer as before, but with a few different statements: Read More→

You Can close Your Short Sales with Only ONE WEEK of Work!

Ever wonder how much you earn per hour by the time you close a short sale deal? The industry has transformed from being extremely difficult without standardization to becoming streamlined with a specific system per lender. Many investors hate the idea of doing short sales because of the fallacy that they are so time consuming. Is this true…literally? Have you ever broken it down per deal? The time you actually spend on 1 deal versus the cash you earn is really quite exciting!

The market got tighter with fewer houses for sale, making it a Seller’s market. The Lenders slowed down their foreclosure processes, in my opinion, due to the Presidential Election. Now that the election is over, the lenders are going to be pushing really hard to get the foreclosures through.

I want to teach you a step by step process of how my students and I buy and sell short sales and the true time involved to make a profit of not less than $20,000.00. In this article, I am not withholding any secrets to my or their success. Read More→

Short Sale Liens Get Mean

Posted on November 3, 2012 by

Now IS the perfect time to purchase and resell short sale properties. Why? Due to major mistakes by Lenders made at the time Homeowners obtained financing, our market is flooded with homes in which the Lenders are willing to accept short sales. Lenders such as Bank of America, Wells Fargo, GMAC, CitiMortgage and Chase from 2006 to 2008, have major mistakes in their paperwork. They are reaching out to Homeowners asking them to do a Short Sale or Deed-in-Lieu. However, many of the Homeowners aren’t aware of the fact that they can’t do a Deed-in-Lieu if they have a second lien. And, if they owe Homeowners Association dues, which are a personal debt against the Homeowner, they may still be liable for the difference.

Homeowners Association dues need to be satisfied in full so that if a house is deeded back to the Lender, the Homeowners are no longer responsible for any more dues. There is a statute which states that the Lender that forecloses on the property is responsible to pay only one year of Homeowners Association dues. When conducting a short sale, this statute has little or no meaning to the short sale Lenders, meaning they may not agree to even pay one full year. I have seen Homeowners deed their property back to the Lender only later to find out that they are still liable for the difference owed on the Homeowner Association dues. Brutal! Read More→