Almost any real estate agent trying to work out a short sale deal with Bank of America will express frustrations with the slow and painful process. Bank of America is dealing with more short sales than any other company, in large part due to their acquisition of Countrywide Home Loans which was notorious for offering bad loans during the housing boom.
There are a couple of things Bank of America does that especially make the short sale transaction difficult. For one, Bank of America will not allow the same agent to represent both sides of the transaction. They won’t approve a short sale file unless there are two separate agents.
I’m sure they are doing this because they feel it will help them to get the best purchase price for each home they need to approve, and will help them stay out of potential legal issues. But, for real estate agents who have BOA short sales listed, this can be a royal pain when they have a buyer who is interested in a property they have listed.
Bank of America also requires that buyers get prequalified with BOA before they will accept a short sale offer. This is a pain for people who are trying to buy short sales, who are already prequalified with other banks, but it’s actually a smart move by Bank of America. For one, they know that the potential buyers are actually qualified, and they might actually get a few more loans out of the deal, helping them get business in a time of major losses.
If we step back and look at short sales from the view of Bank of America, it is a really tough situation they are in. They are losing millions every day. And while the policy’s they have are annoying for real estate agents, as a business, they have to do what they can to try and make a profit, or at least reduce their losses.
Now Bank of America has paid the attorney's fees to foreclose (estimated at a low end of $40K in my state) and will continue to face the same or worse market conditions. Not a good business move, but that's Bank of America for you. Wasting America's money!
They say that learning to do a short sale is very simple with Bank of America compared to other banks. But since they have been attacked due to their slow approval rate, short sale homes are processed painstakingly. In today's real estate world, purchasing short sales can really turn homeowners, buyers, sellers, and real estate agents upside-down.