15 Questions to Ask the Listing Agent Before Considering a Short Sale

This is part 3 of the series: 40 Questions You Need to Ask When Considering a Short Sale

Question for the Listing Agent: Pro or No?

Listing agents have their work cut out for them when it comes to short sales and I don’t envy them one bit. Amazingly, some do a really good job handling short sales (listings) and they can take on a large number at a time. But a large number of listing agents are fumbling through the transaction one short sale at a time. Listing agents are the key to how fast the short sale gets approved. Better agent = faster approval…simple enough.

15 Questions to Ask the Listing Agent

  1. Is the property owned by and owner or investor?
  2. Has there been a trustee’s sale notice issued?
  3. How many short sales have you closed?
  4. Do you have the seller’s completed short sale package in your possession?
  5. Have you ordered the preliminary title report?
  6. Are there any non-mortgage liens attached to the property?
  7. How many loans are on the home?
  8. Who are the lenders/banks?
  9. Are any of the loans a line of credit?
  10. Do you have any offers?
  11. Have you had any previous offers?
  12. Have you received an acceptance letter?
  13. Has the broker’s price opinion (BPO) been conducted? (if yes, when)
  14. Have you been assigned a negotiator?
  15. What has motivated the sellers to do a short sale?

Reality Check Points

  • All of these questions will have an impact on the short sale process
  • Each one of these questions could turn into long lengthy complicated answers
  • Don’t go under contract until you have the majority of these questions answered
  • Your agent should be able to explain the meaning of every question to you

As a side note, listing agents misrepresent how many short sales they have closed. Arizona agents can quickly pull up another agent’s deal history. What’s unfortunate is they feel the need to exaggerate the number of deals they have closed by saying “I’ve closed hundreds”. Most agents do 2-3 deals a year, nobody is doing hundreds of short sales.

Since every short sale is so unique and so complicated in its own ways, you care more about knowing the listing agent has closed a handful of short sales and that they are educated. I want to know that the listing agent knows what is involved with closing a short sale, that they have done it a couple times and that they welcomed the opportunity to do it again.

Author of this Post

If you have questions or comments just leave them below or get in touch.

Marcus Fleming

marcus.fleming@redfin.com
Serving East Valley, Cave Creek and Scottsdale
Homes Closed: 60+