On April 8, 2010, Bank of America (BOA) executives held a webinar presentation for over 10,000 Realtors to discuss BOA’s short sale process.
Tip: Refer to the Equator Agent/Homeowner Guide for step-by-step instructions
10 Tips to Avoid Delays in Processing Time
- Review all documents and images for accuracy prior to uploading in Equator
- Ensure that property is listed in the MLS
- Negotiate external party fees prior to submission of HUD-1
- Supply HUD-1 that is valid for at least 60 days
- Ensure that agent and customer tasks are completed as timely as possible in Equator (i.e. accepting short sale assignment, submitting short sale offer, and uploading offer documents within 7 days)
- Only submit fully executed purchase offers with all appropriate addendums signed by both buyer and homeowner
- Work to get purchase offer representing the best possible fair market value and highest net proceeds for the lender
- Set appropriate expectations with buyers/sellers so they understand the complexity and resulting length of time a short sale can take
- Work to get a release on outside liens as early as possible
- The following situations will cause delays: (1) Change in buyer or agent at any time during the process; (2) Customer files bankruptcy; (3) Deal change after the approval letter is issued
Steps Already Taken to Improve the Short Sale Process
- Increased staffing and updated training
- Dedicated Short Sale Call Center: 1-866-880-1232
- Hours of Operation: 8 AM – 9PM (EST), Monday -Friday
- Extended Saturday hours – Coming Soon!
- Equator – primary tool for initiating the short sale
- Changed procedures to improve associate responsiveness
- Enhanced the procedure to proactively provide loan status
Steps Underway to Enhance Programs
Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives (HAFA):
- Implemented on April 5, 2010 and are following the HAFA guidelines
- HAFA is first in short sale waterfall of options for a homeowner
- Remember: Some investors (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) are not participating; offering a cooperative or traditional short sale
- Proactive outreach to homeowners
- Offering a pre-approved short sale solicitation
- After offer is submitted, approval within 14 days
- Promissory Note – Not required with HAFA
- Homeowner required to clear second liens
- Homeowner leaves the home – no deficiency and no contribution
Cooperative Short Sales:
- Similar in approach to HAFA but wider in scope
- Includes homeowners who are not eligible for HAFA – non-owner occupied, jumbo loans, Fannie, Freddie
- Currently in pilot stages with rollout expected 2nd Quarter of 2010
Steps Underway to Educate Agents
- Overview of the process so agents can lead process
- Step-by-Step Guidelines for working through the system as an agent and homeowner
- Tips to avoid common problems
Outreach Events to Distribute Materials
- Large Realtor Events
- Participation with Short Sale Certification Programs
Want Agents’ Input
- Developing mechanisms for on-going feedback on process, systems, materials
- Will act on feedback with continuous improvements
Introduction to Equator
- 24/7 access to the short sale system
- Status tracking
- Direct communication with the Short Sale Negotiator
- Documents are uploaded directly to Equator instead of faxing
- Streamlined approval process
- Historical view of offers and counter offers
Coming Soon in Equator:
- There are a few specific loan investor types (i.e., FHA/VA) that are not on the Equator system and will be added at a later date
- Agent feedback, homeowner feedback, and internal data is being leveraged to identify system and/or enhancements for future process rollouts and educational material improvements
Agent Communication within Equator
- Throughout the process you will receive notifications of the status of the short sale. The system automatically tracks the agent, customer, and bank tasks and will alert you after key milestones have been achieved and to let you know the next steps.
- For specific questions/concerns you have, the negotiator assigned to the short sale is your primary contact.
- Please ensure when sending a message in Equator you only select “Negotiator”.
- We request that you only send messages via Equator and not directly through email. This enables our associates to effectively manage the case load and respond to agent inquires in a timely manner.
- If you have submitted a request to the Negotiator via Equator AND there has been no response after 2 business days: You should escalate to a “Team Lead” by selecting this role in your message drop down menu.
- In the event of an urgent issue, such as, a foreclosure sale date within 48 hours: You should immediately escalate to the “Team Lead” and “Manager”; and also call the Short Sale support team at 1-866-880-1232.