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socrateaser, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 37830
Experience:  Retired (mostly)
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I am in the process of selling my home on short sale. My real

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I am in the process of selling my home on short sale. My real estate agent got some comps for the listing price that came in low. I was depressed and out of it when I signed the price and now I have an offer on the table for even lower about 80k difference. The bank does not even have all the paperwork needed and has not done the appraisal yet. My realtor is strongly pressuring me to sign this contract and telling me not to worry about the price it will be up to the bank and I should just sign the agreement. Please Help!! I went with the first agent scared and signed the agreement without any research. I am now beginning to see that she might not have my best interest at heart. We listed the property and within one day we had an offer. It is going for a steal (literally). I asked to wait and list until the bank appraisal and she said they could foreclose any day so lets list. Now I am worried, broke, and upset because if I say anything but yes she trys to tell me I don't know what I am talking about.

Your agent works for you. If you don't like the deal, then don't sign. If your agent disagrees, tell the agent that you would be happy to cancel the listing and find someone else.

The agent is correct that the lender must approve the short sale. However, sending an unrealistic offer to a lender is a great way to get the lender to ignore you going forward.

If you want to actually make a short sale work, then you need to have the agent produce a "comparative market survey" (aka "comps"), which shows what a "reasonable" fair market price is for the property, set the property to sell for that price, and then find a buyer who will actually qualify for a loan, if necessary, to make the purchase.

If you do all that, and sign that offer, you'll get the property sold. If you send in a lowball from a buyer with speculative qualifications, the lender may view you as just stalling so that you can live in the property without paying the mortgage, and that will generate a foreclosure -- sooner than later.

Hope this helps.
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The agent told me this is a great deal and she pulled comps on three homes in my neighborhood that sold. However, when I purchased this house three years ago there were many houses being built at the same time and we had to pull comps from homes in other locations due to the customized floor plan we did. It is not just 4 bed 41/2 bath it has two master suites, fenced in cleared yard, only two years old, other houses are just base models. How do I question her listing price without being offensive? Now when I pull the listing of homes with 4+ beds, 4+ bath in my zip code I get three listings one for 365K, 335K, and mine for 285K but buyer is asking 260K. None of the other homes are in my neighborhood but within the zip code under MLS. Doesn't that seem weird....

A property is worth what the market will currently support. What happened three years ago is irrelevant. In fact, any comp more than 90 days old is generally insufficient. If a property has substantial improvements from others in the same locale, you can just figure the additional cost of those improvements and adjust the price accordingly.

If the agent's comps are within 10% of the offer, and the comps are recent, then the offer is probably reasonable. The only other issue is whether or not the buyer is qualified. If yes, then take the deal and submit it to the bank. Otherwise, say "no." Simple as that.

Hope this helps.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

My agent is coming over to discuss this deal and is pressuring me to sign the contract. What is a good stall tactic to reject this offer without being suspecious. I am behind on mortgage but the lender said I am far from foreclosure I just needed to move it from loan modification. I am literally on Welfare. I can show that for 8 months I did not work.... I have three interviews next week.

Hello again,

You don't need to justify your actions. As the seller, you have the right to reject or counter an offer that does not meet the exact requirements of the MLS listing. Example: If the property is listed for $100,000, and someone offers $80,000, you can reject the offer completely, or you can counter with some other price, e.g., $90,000.

The only offer that you cannot reject is a bona fide offer of $100,000 -- and, even then, you can reject the offer if someone else has first offered more than $100,000.

See generally, Crews v. Sullivan, 133 Va. 478 (VA Sup. Ct. 1922) (An offer may be withdrawn at any time before acceptance. There must be no variance between the acceptance and the offer.)

Hope this helps.