Short Sale Advice Needed

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Submitted by t36tran on May 14, 2013 - 8:10pm

A little background on my situation. Been saving for a down payment since 2003. Back in Nov. of 2012, I put in an offer on a house. The house is a 4 bed 2 bath with a 2 car attached garage. What makes it unique is a finished 4 car detached garage in the back. Being a car guy, this feature is very desirable to me. It was a short sale and there was quite a bit of interest. In order to get the inside track, I decided to hire the listing agent to be my agent. Had to up the amount twice to get my offer accepted. Final offer came to 456K. Fast forward to the present. I get an email from Blue Anchor Advisors. They are a short sale specialist company working for my agent to facilitate the short sale process. The rep informs me that if I am willing to bring 45K to the table at closing, I can get the house for 371K. The 45K would show up as a charge on the closing statement and go to Blue Anchor, who would use it to satisfy all secondary liens on the house. The rep stated that in 2013, the short sale laws have been changed and secondary lien holders can no longer go after the seller for a deficiency, so in order to get the deal done, we need to go this route. I really want this house, but something doesn't seem quite right to me. I do not trust my agent or the rep because they have a vested interest in getting the deal done. Has anyone dealt with a similar situation? Any and all advice is greatly appreciated.

Submitted by bearishgurl on May 14, 2013 - 9:24pm.

We would need the address or at the very least, a zip code to help you properly. You didn't state if you yourself verified the amount actually owing on any secondary liens or if you know the status of default or pending trustees sale on the first TD or any secondary liens.

Unfortunately, in your case, without that info, it is impossible to advise you properly.

And no, I personally am not looking for a "short sale" to get involved in.

If you would rather pm me with this info, that is okay, as well, but I may not be able to get back to you until the weekend.

I don't know how the "CA short sale laws" were changed in 2013, IF they actually were. Perhaps another Pigg can answer that question.

I can see how you, as a buyer, would be attracted to a second, detached 2-car garage and why this is an "exceptional" property because of that (rare) feature.

Submitted by t36tran on May 14, 2013 - 9:39pm.

PM sent.

Submitted by SD Realtor on May 14, 2013 - 9:50pm.

SB931 and SB458 are most likely the legislation you are referring to however SB458 went into effect in 2011. I cannot comment on your situation without knowing more information. Interesting your agent is telling you about this now when they clearly knew this would be the case all along.

Submitted by t36tran on May 14, 2013 - 10:11pm.

I signed an addendum agreeing to the new 371K price and adding the 45K provision to my offer. The lender is suppose to issue official acceptance documentation in the next few weeks. Will be very interested to read exactly what it will say. This was the first offer I have ever submitted, so I am trying to be as cautious as possible.

Submitted by t36tran on May 15, 2013 - 8:16pm.

Update on the situation. There is a high probability the agents involved in this deal are trying to commit fraud. I have written my agent withdrawing my offer and cancelling his representation. Lucky I went with a mortgage broker other than the one they were really pushing. He was able to, after doing some research, paint a pretty good picture of how the scheme was suppose to work. I knew something didn't seem quite right. Really sucks.

Submitted by SK in CV on May 15, 2013 - 8:25pm.

Sorry to hear this. I was hoping someone with short sale experience would chime in on this. It seemed kind of strange with the terms changing at the last minute, but having never been through it, anything is possible. Glad you ended up with someone experienced that could help spot the problems.

I'm curious if this is common. Anyone else ever heard of something like this happening?

Submitted by SD Realtor on May 15, 2013 - 9:34pm.

There are several different forms of how this could have transpired. One of the more common ones is a middle man. That is, there already may have been an accepted offer on the home by an investor. Say that offer is already done and accepted for 371k. Now another buyer comes along and he purchases the home for say 450k and he thinks he is buying it direct from the short sale lender. The escrows would close at the same time. If it is done properly, the investor ownership of the home could be shielded in say some company name. It is doubtful that was what happened here. As hard money lenders we ran into an investor who was going to use our hard money to do this. He was working with a listing agent who had the short sale listing. The listing agent also had a buyer so they had it set up well.

This is a good example of a pitfall of working with the listing agent directly.

The original poster may want to file a complaint with the dre or at least contact the broker.

Submitted by t36tran on May 16, 2013 - 5:21am.

Couldn't sleep. Quite angry today. I am going to post all the details that I am aware of to try and get the word out about these guys. Address of the listing is 4107 Tim St, Bonita Ca. Listing agent is Don Pelletier of Keller Williams. Short sale negotiator is Jim Sullivan of Blue Anchor Advisors. When you search for Blue Anchor, it directs you to Nationwide Short Sale Solutions based in Florida. Their website does not list an address or DRE license number. Searching for a DRE license number in Ca. for Jim, Blue Anchor, or Nationwide came up empty. Jim is not authorized to perform any kind of real estate transaction in Ca. Even though Don Pelletier is suppose to be my agent, in six months of "representation", I have spoken to him on the phone twice and had some email interaction. Never met in person. I've also had some dealings with his subordinate, David Weintraub, also only through email and phone. I believe they did this intentionally so they could claim plausible deniability if needed. Now for the scheme. There is one outstanding mortgage at 637K on the house. Taxes have not been paid in 2012 and 2013 totaling a little over 3K. In conversations with Jim, he had mentioned that they had an "investor" that had been in negotiations with the bank. The "investor" had decided to drop out, but their negotiated price at $371K was still good. This was strange to me because I thought they had submitted my offer for 456K back in Nov. 2012. Why would the bank accept an offer for 371K over one for 456K? Turns out my offer was most likely never submitted. Of course when I heard that I could get the house for 371K, I became somewhat blinded and decide to mostly ignore the little voice saying this sounds a little too good. Of course the caveat was the payment of 45K to Blue Anchor to help settle the "secondary liens". When I asked Jim what specific liens were on the property, he became evasive. Now, I'm ignorant of real estate law, but it seemed weird to me that I would be paying 45K to a 3rd party with no ownership interest and trusting them to pay off all the secondary liens. Searching records, only the 3K in property back taxes has come up as a secondary lien. Again, I wanted to believe the deal was still legit, so I reasoned as long as things are done through a title/escrow company, I should be covered. But when Don filled out the original sales contract, he also specified the title and escrow companies to use. I do not know how extensive this scheme is, so I'll leave it at that. Hate that I let the prospect of a good deal somewhat cloud my judgement. The old saying really is true. If it's too good...
There is one more catch. When I submitted the original offer, Don had me open up escrow and deposit 5K. Hope there are no issues with getting my money back. Thanks to everyone for providing input and assistance. Yes, I do plan on filing a complaint with the DRE.

Submitted by bearishgurl on May 16, 2013 - 7:54am.

t36tran wrote:
Couldn't sleep. Quite angry today. I am going to post all the details that I am aware of to try and get the word out about these guys. Address of the listing is 4107 Tim St, Bonita Ca. Listing agent is Don Pelletier of Keller Williams. Short sale negotiator is Jim Sullivan of Blue Anchor Advisors. When you search for Blue Anchor, it directs you to Nationwide Short Sale Solutions based in Florida. Their website does not list an address or DRE license number. Searching for a DRE license number in Ca. for Jim, Blue Anchor, or Nationwide came up empty. Jim is not authorized to perform any kind of real estate transaction in Ca. Even though Don Pelletier is suppose to be my agent, in six months of "representation", I have spoken to him on the phone twice and had some email interaction. Never met in person. I've also had some dealings with his subordinate, David Weintraub, also only through email and phone. I believe they did this intentionally so they could claim plausible deniability if needed. Now for the scheme. There is one outstanding mortgage at 637K on the house. Taxes have not been paid in 2012 and 2013 totaling a little over 3K. In conversations with Jim, he had mentioned that they had an "investor" that had been in negotiations with the bank. The "investor" had decided to drop out, but their negotiated price at $371K was still good. This was strange to me because I thought they had submitted my offer for 456K back in Nov. 2012. Why would the bank accept an offer for 371K over one for 456K? Turns out my offer was most likely never submitted. Of course when I heard that I could get the house for 371K, I became somewhat blinded and decide to mostly ignore the little voice saying this sounds a little too good. Of course the caveat was the payment of 45K to Blue Anchor to help settle the "secondary liens". When I asked Jim what specific liens were on the property, he became evasive. Now, I'm ignorant of real estate law, but it seemed weird to me that I would be paying 45K to a 3rd party with no ownership interest and trusting them to pay off all the secondary liens. Searching records, only the 3K in property back taxes has come up as a secondary lien. Again, I wanted to believe the deal was still legit, so I reasoned as long as things are done through a title/escrow company, I should be covered. But when Don filled out the original sales contract, he also specified the title and escrow companies to use. I do not know how extensive this scheme is, so I'll leave it at that. Hate that I let the prospect of a good deal somewhat cloud my judgement. The old saying really is true. If it's too good...
There is one more catch. When I submitted the original offer, Don had me open up escrow and deposit 5K. Hope there are no issues with getting my money back. Thanks to everyone for providing input and assistance. Yes, I do plan on filing a complaint with the DRE.

t36tran, you never mentioned to me that the LA was Don Pelletier and I never checked. I just saw that it was an "out of area" broker (Carmel Valley - not "out of area" but far enough away to be "questionable" to me). A red flag because there are many brokers who grew up within a one mile radius of that property. IIRC, Don is a south county local. He never struck me as one to pull a fast one. Had you told me who the LA was, I could have possibly assisted you better.

I tried to assist this poster extensively without document examination as I have an intimate lay of the land, having lived and worked in the immediate area for many years. Based on his preferences, this property would have been outstanding for him if acquired under $450K if he got a full inspection/enginnering rpt and received it vacant at COE (poss problematic). The document examination was to be performed tomorrow morning. I am convinced there are actually TWO outstanding loans on this property.

t36tran, for a variety of reasons, even though the transactions "smells fishy," I am not yet convinced that you should have withdrawn your offer yet.

Perhaps a Pigg with REALIST can help as I do not have a current subscription.

I'm sorry to hear about your withdrawal, tran.

Seller is a longtime San Diegan or possibly a native (35+ years).

***********************************************

edit: Okay, back from my early morn HS trek. Drove by subject property which is located 9 houses from one of the most well-known exclusive enclaves of south county (Wheeler Ridge). Six houses to the northwest is a newer street with six newer spec homes with 270 deg pano views, all in excess of 5000 sf.

There is no "For sale" sign in the yard but there is a big sign to the left of the front door (tenant operates day care biz).

The flood control channel (county easement) is shared with two neighbors behind (uphill, on Choc Cliff) as I suspected.

The driveway visible to the street appears to be top-quality and poured within the last few years. There are no cracks visible on the approx 17-20 yds visible from the street. The RV gate is 18-20' wide and also of very good quality. As I stated before, seller has poured at least 70 yds of concrete in recent years, IMO. I also stated the newer rear garage/workshop would cost ~$65K to build today if you didn't build it yourself.

I did not find any active businesses registered in CA with the name, "Blue Anchor" or "Blue Anchor Advisors."

http://kepler.sos.ca.gov/

Not sure a "negotiator" between the 1st and 2nd TD HAS to be licensed to do biz in CA. (Any SS agents know?) The most current first and second TD were taken out on this property in tandem in January 2007 with the notorious (likely subprime) Countrywide/MERS. B of A undoubtedly acquired them in 2008 but filed an assignment of one of the loans (the 1st TD?) to BNY Mellon in January 2013 (sold off at discount and/or likely in anticipation of new lender filing an NOD, IMO).

I find it odd that buyer here was recently asked to deposit $45K "out of escrow" in order to make this deal go through IF the deposit was to be truly "out of escrow." AFAIK, the 2nd TD is still outstanding. No NODs have been filed on the property, but of course, that doesn't mean seller isn't behind in payments on the 1st TD note and/or the 2nd TD as well.

Submitted by bearishgurl on May 16, 2013 - 8:22am.

I don't see Pelletier as intentionally or blatantly violating the law. A longtime San Diegan (or poss native), he has been licensed with DRE since 1984:

Don has the following professional Designations, and areas of expertise, and as a result, can better assist you.

Equator Platinum Certified Agent-Don is certified in both REO and Short Sales on the EQUATOR platform.

Certified Luxury Home Marketing Specialist (CLHMS): Don is one of only a few agents in San Diego that has received the prestigious "CLHMS" Designation as an expert in successfully marketing multi-million dollar luxury homes.

Certified Default Property Expert (CDPE): This designation is particularly helpful to those who are struggling with their home mortgage(s) and need to understand their options. We are often able to help save families from foreclosure.

Pre-Foreclosure Specialist (PSC): This certification focuses heavily on the recent HAMP and HAFA Federal programs to help families avoid foreclosure.

REO Default Certified Professional (RDC-Pro): This Designation provides specialized, advanced training in foreclosures-and specifically how to best service asset managers on a day to day basis.

Certified Resident Specialist (CRS): Requires extensive training in seller representation (less than 5% of REALTORS® have this Designation).

Accredited Buyers Representative (ABR): Specialized training in Buyer Agency and representation.

E-Professional (e-Pro): This designation is issued by the National Association of Realtors. It is specialized training in the use of the internet and email to efficiently streamline the transaction process for our clients.

8. RE/MAX Hall of Fame Award, the Chairman's Award (highest RE/MAX award for individual agent Productivity & volume) and the Lifetime Achievement Award. These awards are not what's important. What IS important is that they are based on productivity - which means we are consistently and effectively achieving results on behalf of our Clients.

9. For the past three years in a row, Don has been the recipient of the "Best in Client Satisfaction" award. This award is based on an independent survey of approximately 23,000 San Diego home Sellers and Buyers, from the previous year. They are asked numerous questions about their real estate transaction experience, and then they are asked to rate their agent.

10. Don receives 88% repeat and referral business, so instead of having to constantly "prospect for business", Don can spend his time focused on his Clients.

AFFILIATIONS AND RANKINGS

EQUATOR PLATINUM CERTIFIED,*REO.com*RES.NET*National REO Brokers Association (NREOB),* Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE) *REO Default Certification (RDC-Pro) )*Certified Luxury Home Marketing Specialist(CLHMS), Pre-Foreclosure Specialist Designation (PSC)*Asset USA Short Sale Certified*Certified Residential Specialist (CRS)*Accredited Buyer Representative (ABR)* Member of RisMedia's Top 5 in Real Estate.

AWARDS AND ACHIEVEMENTS

• Appointed Chairperson of the San Diego Association of Realtor's ‘Professional Standards Committee (Ethics and Arbitration Committee)

• Sixteen Years as a member of the SDAR Professional Standards committee

• Century 21-Hall of Fame Award - 1991

• RE/MAX Hall of Fame Award - 1996

• Lifetime Achievement Award - 2003 - this is RE/MAX Internationals most prestigious award.

• RE/MAX Agent of the Year - 2006

• Member of RIS Media's Top 5 in Real Estate

• 2008-2010 Five Star: "Best in Client Satisfaction" Award (San Diego County)

http://activerain.com/pelletierhomes

In my memory, Don has had many listings in south county in past decades.

tran, are you CERTAIN that the $45K you were recently asked to deposit was to be paid "outside of escrow" (i.e. not shown on the HUD 1)??

Submitted by SK in CV on May 16, 2013 - 8:38am.

BG, It's unclear to me whether that extra cash was outside of escrow. Maybe our poster can clarify. At least once, he indicated, though vaguely, that it was through escrow.

I'd like to know if these intermediary "short sale specialists" are common. If they're involved in negotiating loan transfers or payoffs, they're required to be either licensed RE brokers, or licensed lenders through the DOC. I suspect lawyers are allowed to do it too.

If these intermediaries are common, it's just one more indication of how totally inept lenders are. They're doing thousands of short sales. They should have people in house to do this sort of thing, rather than pay a 3rd party extra cash. This may be a perfectly normal short sale transaction, but based on info provided, it smells very fishy.

Submitted by bearishgurl on May 16, 2013 - 9:21am.

SK in CV wrote:
BG, It's unclear to me whether that extra cash was outside of escrow. Maybe our poster can clarify. At least once, he indicated, though vaguely, that it was through escrow.

I'd like to know if these intermediary "short sale specialists" are common. If they're involved in negotiating loan transfers or payoffs, they're required to be either licensed RE brokers, or licensed lenders through the DOC. I suspect lawyers are allowed to do it too.

If these intermediaries are common, it's just one more indication of how totally inept lenders are. They're doing thousands of short sales. They should have people in house to do this sort of thing, rather than pay a 3rd party extra cash. This may be a perfectly normal short sale transaction, but based on info provided, it smells very fishy.

In PM (I hope the OP doesn't mind), he first indicated he was asked to pay "...45K to the short sale specialist outside of escrow at closing." I didn't advise him on that one way or the other because I didn't actually know how much was currently owing on the two loans and neither did he.

I DID explain to him that the LA (didn't know his/her identity) was acting as a "dual agent" in this case but signed his/her first contract with the SELLER. Therefore, their fiduciary duty was primarily to the seller.

If I HAD to have a dual agent in order to acquire this property, I feel Don Pelletier would have been much preferable to use than the majority of assclowns out there. I know where I have seen Don now. He works with settlement judges outside of local Family Law depts as an "expert consultant."

But however "legal" dual agency is, I don't fundamentally believe in it and think it should be banned in CA. At the very least, the practice invites distrust in buyers because they don't feel they are "represented properly" even if they are.

I DO think tran's offer was submitted to the lender because he states he deposited his earnest money check with Don. I can't see Don collecting the check for his brokerage trust fund without submitting tran's offer.

$416K is MORE than a fair price for this property, in the absence of soil subsidence problems or a structural problem and IF the OP was delivered the property vacant and free of vehicles.

I gave the OP a recco to a good soils engineer and advised him repeatedly to have a contingency in his counter offer to deliver the property vacant to him a COE and schedule his final walk-thru three days before COE so he could personally check as to its vacancy and make sure all of seller's vehicles were gone.

Seller was storing his vehicles in the rear garage/RV pad he built. The OP stated he now lived in Rosarito, BC.

It is very possible that there are cash backup offers for more than $500K and the property will appraise (if all is structually sound). The OP will NOT find another deal like this in SD County for this price range. It is a one-time deal as it had an exceptional *newly-built* garage/workshop on the premises and was located atop one of the best streets in Bonita.

As to Blue Anchor, I can't comment. The 1st TD holder appears to be based in NY and the Countrywide/B of A (subprime?) second has been likely long ago sold off to an investor of an unk location. It very well could have been BNY Mellon's decision to use Blue Anchor or maybe that is who Don uses to negotiate with out-of-state lenders.

The LA was still marketing the property on the MLS to obtain backup offers in case tran backed out, as is customary with SS's.

Submitted by bearishgurl on May 16, 2013 - 9:39am.

SK in CV wrote:
. . . I'd like to know if these intermediary "short sale specialists" are common. If they're involved in negotiating loan transfers or payoffs, they're required to be either licensed RE brokers, or licensed lenders through the DOC. I suspect lawyers are allowed to do it too...

They are "licensed" . . . in Florida:

http://www.corporationwiki.com/Florida/P...

I'm not sure if that matters.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Bank_of...

BNY Mellon is based in NY and G@d only knows where the other "investor" is located.

edit: ... and YES, I agree that the Big Banks are horribly "inept."

Submitted by SD Realtor on May 16, 2013 - 2:05pm.

To the op this dors sound like it was a middleman effort.

Submitted by t36tran on May 16, 2013 - 3:16pm.

I emailed Don Pelletier and David Weintraub the following this morning:

David, in case you feel like "discussing" this further, can you answer the following questions?

1) Can you provide independently verifiable proof that my offer for 456K was submitted to BofA in Nov. 2012?

2) Why was Jim Sullivan, your short sale negotiator who was supposedly working on my offer also working with an “investor” on the house all this time?

3) If both offers were submitted and reviewed, why would BofA choose an offer for 371K over one for 456K?

4) What is Jim’s Ca. DRE license #, or any kind proof that he is authorized to work on any real estate transaction in Ca?

5) Why would Blue Anchor, an outside party with no ownership stake want 45K paid directly to them to settle all the secondary liens? Why would I trust them to do so?

6) What are the secondary liens that should add up to almost 45K? List each entity and the amount owed. When I asked Jim this on multiple occasions he never gave me an answer. That’s curious. The only one I’ve found has been a little over 3K owed in property back taxes.

I asked that all replies be in email. Don called me up this afternoon and said he was too busy to write an email (curious) but would talk to me over the phone. I ask about question 1. He dances around and starts talking about negotiating a better deal and bank reps changing. When pressed, he replies that no the offer was never sent to BofA. Then we go on to the other questions and he starts to claim ignorance, even though he has been working with Jim for 2.5 years and on over 10 deals. I tell him I'll give him the weekend to contact Jim and provide me with satisfactory answers to the questions. Keep in mind Don has been in the business for over 26 years. I'm curious to see what he has to say.

Submitted by SD Realtor on May 16, 2013 - 5:20pm.

The fact that your offer was never submitted to the lender is curious and indicates another offer was on the lenders desk to begin with. Most short sales are quite straightforward. The seller will accept the offer and that offer is then sent to the short sale lenfer for review. Do you have a copy of your original purchase agreement that was accepted by the seller? Additionally many agents include a short sale addendum so you should have that as well. I have never done a deal with Don but he is a seasoned guy. Many agents do employ short sale processors but NEVER do those processors charge more then 1% so ypu should demand answers. Better then what you have received

Submitted by bearishgurl on May 16, 2013 - 5:59pm.

t36tran wrote:
...Why would Blue Anchor, an outside party with no ownership stake want 45K paid directly to them to settle all the secondary liens? Why would I trust them to do so?...

Because it would appear that the seller (and title co) would be on the hook if they didn’t do what you paid them $45K to do. In addition, your escrow company couldn’t prepare your file to close if all the conditions of escrow had not been met.

You could have countered your offer with a title company (and officer) of your choice now or included the contingency in your offer early on and the same goes for your vacancy contingency specifically mentioning that it is tenant occupied and the (owner’s) vehicles stored there must be removed. As an “arm’s length” purchaser, you have the right to title insurance. A reputable title insurance company will issue you a CLTA policy after COE. For your premium, they are guaranteeing your ownership rights subject to the purchase money lien(s) YOU placed there and any easements on the property previously granted to others. Back taxes are not a “lien” per se. They are automatic and are appurtenant (not exactly the correct word) to the property. The assessor won’t be able come after you for back taxes AFTER closing when the “seller” (in this case, the “SS negotiator”) was supposed to pay them. A reputable title company isn’t going to close and file your grant deed and trust deed if the outstanding property taxes aren’t paid and/or you can’t get clear title as they will be exposed if they do so and subject to an expensive “quiet title” claim. In CA, escrow officers have to divvy taxes up between buyer and seller up to the closing date. Their duties are strictly laid out ad infinitum in state law and they will not do ANYTHING not agreed to by both buyer and seller and included in the escrow instructions and all the amendments thereto which they prepare.

Had you had your *own* agent, they would have ordered you a preliminary title report at a discounted rate (refundable towards eventual purchase of your CLTA policy) and it would have answered all your questions early on … to avoid wasting so much of your time . They also would have kept on the LA like glue to find out the status of “negotiations” and asked for proof of submission of your offer to the lender (fax/e-mail confirmation) immediately after receiving a signed acceptance back from seller. At least a GOOD agent who knows what they are doing would have.

You stated this was your first offer yet you placed it with the LA. I am curious if you ever had your own agent and if not, why not?

It is possible that Don and agent Weintraub aren’t speaking to you now until they talk to their counsel because you threatened them with a DRE complaint. I don’t know. Maybe he had only recently sent your offer into the lender (or his SS negotiators to negotiate with the lender(s)) when the $371K offer of his supposed “investor” was turned down. He did not properly explain to you in November that your offer was actually in a “backup” position.”

I’m not condoning the way the broker representing you does business. He might have gotten the seller to accept your offer as a “back-up” to an existing investor offer which ended up not panning out. So the SS negotiator in FL had already negotiated with the first and second TD holders and knew what they would accept when he finally e-mailed you. The way I see it, “Sullivan” wasn’t “technically” negotiating on behalf of any of the parties. He was performing a paid service for Don’s brokerage and thus is a “service provider.” Don and his agent, Weintraub were the parties’ frontmen. If it is set up like this, I can see how the FL SS negotiators don’t have to be licensed in the states of the properties they attempt to negotiate on. I feel Sullivan contacting you directly was stepping over the line. He should have contacted Don who would show you Sullivan’s e-mail to explain why you had to raise your offer $45K to get it accepted and handle it involving you from there.

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&...

In defense of SS negotiators, in many instances, it is not easy to locate the 2nd and 3rd TD investors and it could take weeks or months to do so, having to go thru MERS. Many are simply individuals and they are scattered everywhere. B of A only has what records they could locate which were stored at Countrywide at the time of their takeover. Some of CW’s “independent loan officers” processing the loans on the buyer’s end also handled the immediate sell-off of CW’s PM 2nd TDs and cash-out refi 2nd TDs or procured the investor themselves. CW paid them points, fees and HUGE yield-spread premiums for doing so … all coming out of the borrowers pocket in the form of closing costs. I know of TWO former CA loan officers who primarily originated for Countrywide in San Diego County who are serving time in Federal prison for their wayward RE lending activities, ONE being housed in Northern CA. Of course, their DRE licenses were revoked.

Several weeks after closing, you could check ARCC and see if the two reconveyances were filed in seller’s name, just to satisfy your curiosity.

http://arcc.co.san-diego.ca.us/services/...

I am now unclear whether your outstanding offer (before Sullivan’s e-mail) was $371K or $411K. Adding the $45K recently asked for would make it an “offer” for $416K or $456K, depending on what you ended up coming to after being asked by your agent to “raise it” a couple of times.

In any case, this property was WORTH $411K, $416K or $456K and would easily have appraised at the highest sale price in the absence of structural problems.

Again, I’m not siding with your RE broker here. At the very least, he had poor communication skills.

I just think you may have had a knee-jerk reaction and jumped the gun. That is an exceptional property and I would have insisted my broker raise my offer including the $45K to Anchor Blue Advisors and list the liens and closing costs it would be used to pay on it on the appropriate CAR form and insist on a receipt from HIM for my check or certified funds made out to Blue Anchor. In any case, the disposition of your $45K would all be shown to you line by line on your HUD 1 at COE). At the same time, I would have included my vacancy contingency, approval of a soils-report contingency (giving my engineer time to make the report) and selection of my own title company if I didn’t have confidence in the one the LB wanted to use. I doubt these (very reasonable) contingencies would have been countered by the seller.

For the sake of discussion, let’s say the 2nd TD holder is currently owed $63K. If taxes were going to be $3K, Don’s commission was going to be ~$20K, Blue Anchor’s fee was going to be ~$7K, termite tenting (house only) was going to be ~$2K, seller’s other closing costs were going to be ~5K, that only leaves ~$8K of your $45K for the investor to satisfy the 2nd TD. That’s about 12.7% of what they were owed and 6.7% MORE than they would have received if foreclosure had already been commenced by BNY Mellon.

As they say in RE parlance, this is the worst house on the best block (it even appeared to have been recently painted - at least the trim). As I told you in PM, it doesn’t get any better than this, tran. 15-20 yrs ago, in another life, I would have JUMPED on a (rare) property like this if I had seen it listed (with my engineer chained to my ankle, of course ).

I now feel that the reason the investor didn’t end up taking it when Blue Anchor wanted them to up their offer $45K was because there was very little work they could do to raise the value and flip it. It wasn’t worth buying for $416K and then attempting to resell it for $456K+? UNLESS they were part of a scheme described by SDR where there were two simultaneous closings in very close proximity to one another. This property would be too cost prohibitive to buy and hold it as a rental due primarily to maintenance costs, IMHO. And transaction costs would eat them up.

Submitted by bearishgurl on May 16, 2013 - 6:04pm.

SD Realtor wrote:
The fact that your offer was never submitted to the lender is curious and indicates another offer was on the lenders desk to begin with. Most short sales are quite straightforward. The seller will accept the offer and that offer is then sent to the short sale lenfer for review. Do you have a copy of your original purchase agreement that was accepted by the seller? Additionally many agents include a short sale addendum so you should have that as well. I have never done a deal with Don but he is a seasoned guy. Many agents do employ short sale processors but NEVER do those processors charge more then 1% so ypu should demand answers. Better then what you have received

Just saw this and agree with all. I honestly don't feel there was anything untoward going on here ... that is, unless the OP can show me otherwise.

Submitted by SK in CV on May 16, 2013 - 6:33pm.

bearishgurl wrote:
t36tran wrote:
...Why would Blue Anchor, an outside party with no ownership stake want 45K paid directly to them to settle all the secondary liens? Why would I trust them to do so?...

Because it would appear that the seller (and title co) would be on the hook if they didn’t do what you paid them $45K to do. In addition, your escrow company couldn’t prepare your file to close if all the conditions of escrow had not been met.

Why would there be any reason for this to be handled outside of escrow? Is there any good reason for secondary liens not be paid through escrow in the more standard manner, with the buyer receiving title, free of all liens except taxes? If the facilitator actually negotiated payoffs of other loans, there would be no reason not to properly document it.

In fact, if this purchase included a new mortgage, I'm pretty sure the fine print in standard loan docs require that everything go through escrow, or at least be included in the escrow closing statement.

Submitted by bearishgurl on May 16, 2013 - 6:43pm.

SK in CV wrote:
bearishgurl wrote:
t36tran wrote:
...Why would Blue Anchor, an outside party with no ownership stake want 45K paid directly to them to settle all the secondary liens? Why would I trust them to do so?...

Because it would appear that the seller (and title co) would be on the hook if they didn’t do what you paid them $45K to do. In addition, your escrow company couldn’t prepare your file to close if all the conditions of escrow had not been met.

Why would there be any reason for this to be handled outside of escrow? Is there any good reason for secondary liens not be paid through escrow in the more standard manner, with the buyer receiving title, free of all liens except taxes? If the facilitator actually negotiated payoffs of other loans, there would be no reason not to properly document it.

In fact, if this purchase included a new mortgage, I'm pretty sure the fine print in standard loan docs require that everything go through escrow, or at least be included in the escrow closing statement.

Agree with this .... as stated below:

... I would have insisted my broker raise my offer including the $45K to Anchor Blue Advisors and list the liens and closing costs it would be used to pay on the appropriate CAR form and insist on a receipt from HIM for my check or certified funds made out to Blue Anchor. (In any case, the disposition of your $45K would all be shown to you line by line on your HUD 1 at COE.) At the same time, I would have included my vacancy contingency, approval of a soils-report contingency (giving my engineer time to make the report) and selection of my own title company if I didn’t have confidence in the one the LB wanted to use. I doubt these (very reasonable) contingencies would have been countered by the seller....

(punctuation corrected)

There is no good reason for these normal liens, costs and fees NOT to be listed on the HUD 1 and I am unconvinced at this point that the OP was actually asked to pay Blue Anchor "outside of escrow."

Submitted by SD Realtor on May 17, 2013 - 7:52am.

It can be sticky.

Why was this done outside escrow?

When the primary authorizes a short sale they will dictate the terms of authorization. Primaries are not very happy when those terms change. That is, if they take a 200k haircut, they would not be happy at all seeing a second receive 45k and thus would probably not authorize the sale. Thus if the payment to the second is on the HUD the primary would not be happy and could effectively kill the deal when they review the HUD.

NOTE that with short sales, even after your loan has funded the short sale lender reviews the final HUD.

I have seen cases in the past where buyers have made direct payments to second lien holders, outside escrow, in order to get them to release their lien. Again, it was done this way in order to skirt the first. It is not something I advocated but it was what the buyers were told they needed to do to get it done. In many cases the buyers did not do it, but I know of 2 cases where they did do it and it all worked out for them.

This was really dicey.

So here is what my speculation is for this case... note it is pure speculation and based only on what the op has given us.

I think this was an intended middleman flip that went sour. Blue Anchor may have been the original buyer or at least knew who the original buyer was. The original buyer probably had a cash deal for 371k for the primary lien holder. In order to secure that deal Blue Anchor probably stated that no monies would go to the second. In order to get the first deal done, on the day of closing Blue Anchor pays the 371 in cash to the first and then covers some amount to pay off the second. That same day the 450+ from the buyer is funded and pays Blue Anchor back.

Now somehow things went south somewhere. Perhaps the original investor couldn't come up with the 371k or something like that. This actually could have been a great windfall for the buyer because he could have gotten the home for 371k plus the 45k. I would imagine that the second lien payoff arrangement (not payoff amount) was much less then 45k but of course Blue Anchor wanted a cut.

If you want to make demands about title companies to use and other contingencies then do not participate in a short sale.

Submitted by bearishgurl on May 17, 2013 - 9:07am.

SD Realtor wrote:
It can be sticky.

Why was this done outside escrow?

When the primary authorizes a short sale they will dictate the terms of authorization. Primaries are not very happy when those terms change. That is, if they take a 200k haircut, they would not be happy at all seeing a second receive 45k and thus would probably not authorize the sale. Thus if the payment to the second is on the HUD the primary would not be happy and could effectively kill the deal when they review the HUD.

NOTE that with short sales, even after your loan has funded the short sale lender reviews the final HUD.

I have seen cases in the past where buyers have made direct payments to second lien holders, outside escrow, in order to get them to release their lien. Again, it was done this way in order to skirt the first. It is not something I advocated but it was what the buyers were told they needed to do to get it done. In many cases the buyers did not do it, but I know of 2 cases where they did do it and it all worked out for them.

This was really dicey.

So here is what my speculation is for this case... note it is pure speculation and based only on what the op has given us.

I think this was an intended middleman flip that went sour. Blue Anchor may have been the original buyer or at least knew who the original buyer was. The original buyer probably had a cash deal for 371k for the primary lien holder. In order to secure that deal Blue Anchor probably stated that no monies would go to the second. In order to get the first deal done, on the day of closing Blue Anchor pays the 371 in cash to the first and then covers some amount to pay off the second. That same day the 450+ from the buyer is funded and pays Blue Anchor back.

Now somehow things went south somewhere. Perhaps the original investor couldn't come up with the 371k or something like that. This actually could have been a great windfall for the buyer because he could have gotten the home for 371k plus the 45k. I would imagine that the second lien payoff arrangement (not payoff amount) was much less then 45k but of course Blue Anchor wanted a cut.

If you want to make demands about title companies to use and other contingencies then do not participate in a short sale.

I agree that the OP's transaction COULD have been a middleman flip gone sour. I agree that the second lien payoff was certainly less than $45K ... much less. However, I don't see where there is money from that $45K for Blue Anchor to get a "cut" over about a 1.5% charge for their "services" unless SELLER kicks in for closing costs and/or his broker commission.

This particular buyer (the OP) HAD to demand a vacancy contingency and to a lesser extent, an approval of an engineering report contingency, IMO. Although the property is situated across the street from a handful (a dozen?) well-known lots with deciduous soil and heavily offset cracked slabs, there has also been some rear lot slide damage and settled foundations on Chocolate Cliff (above) in past decades.

I believe this lot alone (with the flood channel easement in place) would be worth $250-$300K if vacant. This is due to the fact that it is slightly oversized and in an "exclusive" area.

If this buyer had deeper pockets (poss ~$100K to spend on the property after COE), he could play games with seller's holdover tenants for months and mitigate or fix any structural problems he found after COE (ESP if he received the property for $371K). A tenant-occupied short sale, esp one where the seller is residing out of the country and the tenants are running an established business within it, would be PERILOUS for a FTB to deal with if the tenants remained there at COE, IMHO. As would any undisclosed drainage or structural problems.

Although the MLS aggregators are stating seller purchased this property in 2004, I found no grant deed to indicate a sale occurred on this property in that year. I haven't looked at the documents but it is possible that an interspousal transfer deed for this property was filed on 5/10/04. THIS particular seller and two adjacent neighbors were forced to grant strips of their land (easements) to the county for a flood control channel in 1992, after county began proceedings to take it over in 1990.

The channel is visible from the street and extends from the back of this lot up the hill on the left, facing the property from the street.

Without examining the documents myself, I feel this particular seller (age 67) was an original owner (1978) or purchased the property on 2/23/82. (Electronic records prior to 1982 are not avail with the SD Co Recorder.)

If the OP's broker was using a reputable CA title company, there is no reason for him to insist on using his own. I put the service selection contingency in just in case seller's broker had selected what I would consider to be a "flaky" title company. Yes, they are around.

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