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The lender you choose makes a difference

In this heated seller’s market the lender you choose makes a difference. A very big difference. Earlier this month, I closed escrow on a Tujunga fixer.  There were multiple offers and most over asking price. Not only does the lender the buyer selects but their Realtor as well makes a difference. When reviewing multiple offers, I start with the strongest offer and work my way down the list. Price is certainly a factor, as well as down payment. Short contingency periods are preferred.

On this property, the highest offer was written by two agents who were partners.  I called the first agent, her voice mail was full (at 9:30 in the morning).  I phoned the second agent who asked me to call the first agent. We weren’t getting off to a good start.  I told her that I simply needed the buyer’s lender to return my phone call from yesterday. Before accepting an offer, I like to speak to the buyer’s lender, ask questions, and try to get a comfort level that we can close.

The lender you choose makes a difference

Fast forward 24 hours later the lender never called.  I reached out to both agents letting them know that after waiting two days for a return call from the buyer’s lender, they would need to cross qualify with a lender of my choosing.  AND of course I had the seller’s permission for these requests.  They never did cross qualify and we moved on to the next best offer.

As interest rates are historically low, lenders are backlogged with refinances.  Closings are delayed from the most reputable of lenders. The last thing a good listing agent wants is to open escrow with a slacker Realtor and a lender who is MIA. So we opened escrow with another buyer at a slightly lower price.  BUT we closed escrow, there were no inspection negotiations and this buyer had a larger down payment so the low appraisal was not an issue.

The lender you choose makes a difference!  If the first buyer’s lender had returned my phone call and given me the confidence we could close, we likely would have opened escrow.  Interesting that after escrow closed, one of the agents called to ask me why we didn’t take her offer.  I reminded her that her lender never returned my call and that her client did not cross qualify.  I don’t know if her buyer knows why they didn’t get the home. It really is a shame, but I have my client to look after.

Last week I closed escrow on a townhome. It was a trust sale.  As such many steps must occur before distributing funds to the trust. Again we sold over asking price and in multiple offers. The buyer’s lender was weak.  I informed the buyer’s agent he was slow to return calls. But at least this agent was proactive. Finally it came down to the appraisal.  The appraisal came in more than $20,000 under asking price. Both she and I appealed to the lender with facts and data to rebut the low appraisal. The lender didn’t care. The buyer’s agent moved the loan to a new lender, the appraisal came in at value and we closed escrow.

With so many multiple offer situations, choosing the right lender matters if you want your offer selected.

Related Posts: Reasons a buyer should be pre-qualified
Why can’t we get our offer accepted 

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