Are Short Sales Coming To An End?

Earlier this week I attended a “Case Management” hearing with one of my Short Sale Sellers.  The Seller had received a notice to appear in a room at the courthouse at 8:30 AM.  As I walked down the hall to the assigned room I noticed a large number of people outside the door.  Once closer I saw people flipping through page after page of names to determine where they were on the docket.  It was my turn to look for my Sellers’ name even though I had seen them inside the courtroom waiting.  I leafed through 13 pages of cases set for hearings the same morning, approximately 105 cases in all.  I was unable to find the Sellers’ case number on the docket so I thought I would look through the dockets posted on the room next door which was supposed to be the “pre-foreclosure” courtroom.

Another 14 or so pages (over a hundred again) of case numbers for pre-foreclosure hearings were listed.  I thumbed through these pages until I finally found my Sellers’ case number…in the “pre-foreclosure” group rather than the “case management” group.  Who had escalated the case to “pre-forclosure” I wondered…could it have been the Lender, Bank of America?   Hurriedly I informed the Sellers they were in the wrong room and moved them into the other courtroom.  The stands were packed with homeowners and attorneys all with 8:30 hearing times and all waiting to be called up to the stand.  My Sellers did not have an attorney so when called, the three of us went up to be heard.  After explaining the lack of cooperation with servicing company Bank of America uses and telling the Judge we had already submitted 7 offers with rejections on all of them except the last one that came in last week the Judge ordered me to keep working with the Bank and set another hearing for next month to be updated on the progress.

After our hearing I went into the Judge’s office and asked his secretary if the dockets were like this every week an her reply was yes.  I did not ask if this year’s hearings seemed to be more than last year’s hearings and will remember to ask her next month when I return.  So, for those of you who think the Short Sales have come to an end, I can tell you definitely here in St. Augustine, Florida the short sales and foreclosures seem to have a way to go before easing up.  When this next wave of short sales and foreclosures hit the market I believe those Sellers who think their homes have appreciated 10-20% and, are listing their homes at unrealistic prices, might find themselves waiting several more years before their houses appreciate to what they think they are worth!

Don’t agree with me?  Tell me why in the comment section below.

2 responses to “Are Short Sales Coming To An End?

  1. First time I see this blog from over a year ago, and would have to assume it was written by a realtor. My guess is that at the time the seller/homeowner became delinquent BOA was in the process of selling thousands of “bad” loans or underperforming mortgages to other “servicers” such as Green Tree for example. As far as I know most of these loans were actually backed by Fannie Mae. Banks would usually file foreclosure papers with county Courts after 6 months of mortgage default (lack of timely payments.) Florida is a judicial foreclosure state. Lenders have to protect their financial interest in the homes and put all parties on notice through proper channels.

    Susie Murray, Realtor
    Keller Williams Realty-Atlantic Partners-Southside

    • Thank you for your comment Susie. Yes, I have been a Realtor for over 25 years and a Broker for over 10 years. I certainly understand Lenders protecting their financial interests in any investments they have made and I have always believed, contrary to what most homeowners in a foreclosure situation believe, that it is a Buyer’s responsibility to determine whether they can handle the financial responsibilities of a property they consider purchasing. It is also a federal offense to collect rent on a property while not making the mortgage payments which seemed to become the “accepted” norm since so many considered their default a responsibility of the Lender rather than themselves. My article was written merely to point out the masses of people who were then going through the “judicial step” of the foreclosure proceedings and what could possibly lie ahead.

      Here we are, a year later, and we are seeing still another wave of foreclosed properties on the market. One house I listed recently in Jacksonville has 3 foreclosed, bank=owned properties in the nearby area of this home. These are not recent foreclosures but properties that were held by the Lenders until the market became more favorable and they are able to sell at a lower-than-market price and recoup more of their losses.