You Know Your Deal’s In Trouble When….


Every new buyer prospect brings hopes of finding the perfect property, writing the cleanest offer, working with the most professional and cooperative of co-op agents, attending the most jovial and pleasant closing and collecting a nice commission check.

Likewise, every new listing brings hopes of the sunniest of Open House days, receiving the cleanest and most serious of offers, working with the most honest and hard-working co-op agent who represents the most reasonable and considerate buyers with solid financing already arranged. Oh, happy days!

Helloooooooooo??? Sorry to wake you from your pleasant dream, but reality does rear its ugly head, often and at the least convenient times.

You KNOW your deal’s in trouble when:

1)     The co-op agent begins any sentence with, “I’ve (only) been doing this for over 20, 25, 30, 35, 40… 100 (pick one) years and I know what I’m doing!”  This is a dead giveaway that the real estate relic is either “grandfathered” and not required to take any CE courses over the past 30, 40, 50 (pick one) years and is not up to speed on recent GAR forms changes, license law updates, etc. or that they slept through any CE classes they did attend.

2)    The co-op agent’s car is broken down/repossessed and you have to do all the “leg work”.  Prepare to do 90% of the work, but that’s what a conscientious agent does anyway, right?

3)    The buyer met his/her lender at the gym/yoga workout/coffee shop/jail and is totally committed to working with this new BFF who promises the loan will be a cinch and only take a couple of weeks. If you haven’t already heard about Metro Brokers Financial’s free “Second Opinion” service, take advantage of it!

4)    The seller pleads health reasons for not being able to arrange/pay for/schedule/comprehend repair issues. This seller is dumb like a fox and is trying to shirk his disclosure and contractual responsibilities onto the agents who are “making way too much money”.

5)    The seller occupies the property but refuses to provide a Seller’s Property Disclosure Statement and wants to sell the property “as-is”. Uh, huh… better wear galoshes, spray down with insect repellant and put a clothespin on your nose.

6)    The appraiser selected by the buyer’s lender calls you for directions to the property, saying they aren’t familiar with this part of town. Offer to meet them at the property, whether you are the listing or the selling agent and bring well-researched comps with you. (“Oh, I know you’ve done your research, but wondered if these could help you?”)

7)    The buyer wants to move “just a few boxes” into the “garage”.

8)    The buyer’s lender says they need an additional 30 days to “get the loan processed”. What were they doing the past 45 days?

9)    The loan has been “in underwriting” for six weeks.

10)  The buyer’s home inspector is at the property for eight hours.

11)  The locks have been changed or there is a sticker on the keyhole and a yellow sign in the window.

12)  The water/gas meter has/have been pulled or locked.

13)  Either the buyer or the seller disappears for several weeks and cannot be reached.

14)  The co-op agent informs you that, “I AM the broker!” when you diplomatically suggest that he/she seek further advice on some issue. There is a reason they are now their own broker – perhaps their rogue behavior made any previous brokers nervous?

15)  Someone claiming to be the buyer’s or seller’s ex spouse calls and demands to know what’s going on.

What are some of your sure-fire signs that the deal is in trouble? Sound off below!

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11 Responses to “You Know Your Deal’s In Trouble When….”

  1. Steve Adkins Says:

    Oh I’ve run into #14 several times and it was never pretty! I’ve had more problems if the broker/owner then regular agents!

  2. Lynn Stephens Says:

    Oh, I love this blog. I could write for hours on most of these. At least we are all in the same boat and can get some laughs out of this stuff.

  3. Sandra Queen Says:

    If after several weeks, the LO won’t correspond with you and when you finally get him/her, the response is “I’m not handling that loan, I haven’t heard back from that buyer since we gave them a prequal”!! Yet the buyer’s agent is telling you everything’s fine!

  4. jeff Claeson Says:

    the potential co-op agent doesn’t have a supra key
    The appraiser doesn’t have a supra key

  5. greg barnum Says:

    YOUR PROSPECT SAYS THIS WILL BE A CASH BUY! But always manages to change the subject when you ask for proof of funds. And the properties he wants to see keep getting more expensive.

  6. latisha Says:

    When the loan officer tells you “good luck with that one”. UGH! ( in my Charlie Brown voice)

  7. Judy Jones Says:

    Many of the mortgage problems that pop up after a sales contract has been written, could easily be avoided by getting a true PRE-APPROVAL prior to showing the borrower property. All lenders have the same requirements today. So working with a loan officer who is experienced and professional enough to be proactive and review the loan documents and properly structure the loan file is critical.

    Borrowers who wait to provide the mortgage loan officer with their basic documents such as pay stubs, W-2, bank statements etc., until after they have entered into a sales contract are creating a recipe for delays and surprises. Issues that come up when the mortgage document are reviewed, could have been addressed prior to the count down to a closing date, had they gotten a pre-approval….not just an “empty pre-qual”.

    Many other stressful situations could be avoided in the homebuying process if more realistic closing dates were in sales contract.

    The Lead Story in Mortgage New Daily on Aug. 15, 2012 was “Average time from Application to Closing Rises to 48 days! This is business days, not calendar days!”

  8. Lloyd Carver, Loan Officer Says:

    You Know Your Deal’s In Trouble When….

    ….THE LENDER IS A BANK!! As a 20+ year veteran loan officer with Metro Brokers Financial, I have had the privilege and detriment of being both a mortgage broker and a mortgage banker and I can attest to the advantages of being a broker in this market. For those of you who are not aware, MBF has recently come out of a 14 month joint venture with a major bank and the difference is between night and day. As a mortgage broker, I am now able to provide my customers with lower interest rates and closing costs on traditional products and, most importantly, quicker and less stressful closings than when we were partnered with a bank. I thank you Kevin and Judy for reinstating a more service-oriented mortgage company to provide for your agents and their clients.

  9. Ann Francis Says:

    Sounds like the last purchase I was forced to cancel. Met by the seller who informed me that the large holes in the soffits were caused by squirrels. She neglected to mention the rats in the attic although there was rodent poison on the attic floor. Termites around the windows and crawl space of the basement required a stucco cut ($1,800). Basic neglect required replacing several windows. “Mold-like” substances beneath linoleum and adjacent room’s wall caused by leaking bathroom toilet was excused by, “I never go into the basement”. Survey showed fence encroached on neighbors’ yards by over 1.5 feet. Said rear deck overhang had a permit. It didn’t. Seller’s tears did not persuade me to shell out thousands of dollars to repair items that should have been a part of basic upkeep. When she cried ‘lack of funds’ to repair these items, I walked away.

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