Triangle Short Sales Will Become Shorter

One of the difficulties with short sales in Raleigh, Cary and the rest of the Triangle area is that the buyer of a Raleigh, Cary or other Triangle home has to make an offer then wait and wait for the lender to agree to accept a short payment.  In other words, the thing that is short about a short sale is the payment to the bank not the time for the sale to be reviewed. There is a lawsuit brought by the Attorneys General of most of America's states that is being settled with all the major banks.  The lawsuit was brought because of claimed violations of foreclosure procedures by these banks.  One fortunate sidelight of the settlement of this lawsuit that was mainly brought to correct the sale of bank owned properties (REOs) is a requirement that will make short sales faster for sellers in Wake Forest, Holly Springs and the rest of the Triangle area.  The faster the approval, the more buyers will see the process though to completion and there will be an increase in the number of short sales that close.

The following is a quote of the article in Realtor Magazine that picked up a feed from Real Estate Daily News

 " As part of a settlement with state attorneys general, the five largest mortgage servicers are adopting new requirements for short sales, which is expected to speed-up what has been known as a lengthy process.

Here are some of the new requirements for servicers under the settlement: 

  • Servicers must provide borrowers with a decision within 30 days after receiving a short sale package request. 
  • Servicers will be required to notify a borrower, also within 30 days, if any necessary documents are missing to process the short sale request. 
  • Servicers must notify a borrower immediately if a deficiency payment is needed to approve the short sale. They also must provide an estimated amount for the deficiency payment needed for the short sale. 
  • Servicers are also required to form an internal group to review all short sale requests. 
  • Banks will be considered in violation of the settlement requirements if they take longer than 30 days on more than 10 percent of the short sale requests. Violations can carry fines of up to $1 million and $5 million for repeat offenses." 

This report is good news. The biggest problem with short sale's loss mitigation departments is that the departments are understaffed, so the overworked employees have a hard time handling their big case load.  With penalties of $1 million to $5 million, these banks should greatly increase their staffing to spend the money on negotiators who will get more accomplished for their firm instead of paying penalties. Since a lender makes between 20% and 30% more from a short sale than a sale of the same property after foreclosure, this increase in the loss mitigation department will be a huge benefit the lenders because there will be more short sales and less foreclosures.  Meanwhile, it will benefit sellers in Chapel Hill, Durham and the rest of the Triangle area who will get faster approvals, buyers who will get new homes more quickly and Realtors who will have a shorter processing time and an increase in closings. 

This sounds great to me.  What do you think?