Understanding The Log Jam In Short Sales

When approached by realtors who are trying to negotiate their own short sale listings, I ask, "How's that working for you?" and their responses are like watching a fish flopping around out of water. Their stories vary but they all have a common theme. Days go by, weeks go by, months go by and still no decision from the lender.

Of course there is no decision. The short sale procedures and processes set up by the lenders, mortgage servicers and mortgage investors inadvertently can chew up realtors who go it alone and spit them out. I've seen grown men weep and I have heard veteran realtors vow to get out of real estate after trying to negotiate their own short sale listings.

Now, your short sale listings are important to you because they are your livelihood. If they don't close, you don't get paid commissions. I have worked as a short sale negotiator for one of the largest mortgage servicers in the country. With this experience comes the knowledge that helps get decisions on your short sale listings. Despite how important the short sale packages are to you, if you understand more of what happens on the lender side of the short sale, maybe some of it will begin to make sense. Now, the truth sometimes hurts but the truth is...You are just another realtor with just another short sale and at the lender's loss mitigation department, it's just another day. You are not important to the lender nor are your short sale listings. You are just a number and the lender has thousands of short sales like yours and is dealing with thousands of listing agents just like you. To know that your short sale packages are just sitting at some office gathering dust with little hope of seeing the closing table should feel rather nauseating.

Here is a common scenario of a lender or mortgage servicer's loss mitigation short sale department. The lender's or mortgage servicer's short sale department is overworked and under staffed. Each negotiator has been assigned more cases than humanly possible to get done. There is a six month back log of short sales and they are working on the cases in the order they come in. This is why you've heard horror stories of listing agents receiving a short sale approval after months tick by but the buyers have walked a long time ago. In cases where the buyer has walked, the process must start over, provided the listing agent finds another buyer. Now, you are trying to negotiate your own short sale listings and you need them to close when?

I went to the butcher the other day. The first thing I did was grab a number and waited for it to be called. We learned early on, when we go to the butcher we grab a number if we want service. Realtors trying to negotiate their own short sale listings have been conditioned by the loss mitigation short sale departments of the mortgage servicers and lenders to take a number and wait and wait and wait. The difference between the butcher and the lender is, at the butcher, your number gets called on time and a sale happens.

The law firm of Timothy J Cotter, PA, knows that waiting in line is not in our clients' best interest and the closings aren't likely to happen if we wait in line. We use our inside knowledge of the lender's short sale process, our knowledge of the mortgage investor guidelines, our experience and our professional contacts to help push the short sale packages through the system.


Realtors who are signed up with us and are using our negotiating services, don't forget to turn in the new FDIC document we have provided to you with every short sale package. If you have any questions regarding this form, please contact us. Negotiators for some lenders have been instructed by their managers not to process RASS without this document.

Close more short sales.
If you are listing agent or a broker who wants to speed up the short sale process, the best way to do this is to have the short sale experts negotiate your short sale listings. Bill Burress at Timothy J Cotter, PA can help you get your short sale listings to the closing table. Timothy J Cotter, PA offers a short sale negotiating process that is no cost to realtors and realtors keep their commissions.

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