Foreclosure University Blog

Working Directly with REO Listing Agents

March 8th, 2016 by Jarad

Working with REO Listing Agents

Like previously mentioned, working with REO listing agents is a big deal. The best situation is to find a lock box on the door with no “For Sale” sign.

Listing AgentThis is a good indication that the home is vacant and the listing is still pending. There is no “For Sale” sign yet because the REO listing agent doesn’t have the listing yet.

So you have a few weeks, while the property is in transition, to contact the REO listing agent, and let them know you are interested in making an offer.

Now, before you call the listing agent, you need to make sure you know what the value of the property is and what you are willing to offer.

I will go through all this later…

When you call the REO Listing Agent, they may or may not know what the banks asking price is. If they do, you’d better be ready to make your offer which means you need to know “how much” the property is worth. Let’s discuss how this is done in more detail.

When you find a property with a lock box and no “FOR SALE” sign, the first thing you need to do is research. You need to know who owns the property and what it’s worth so you know what to offer.

Don’t worry, we’ll get into determining value, estimating repairs, and what to offer a little bit later. Just know these must be done before you call the REO listing agent.

One of the first things you need to do is find out who owns the property, so you can find out who the REO listing agent is. To find out what bank owns the property, you need to work backwards.

Start with the county records online. Try to do an address search first and see if you can identify what bank owns it.

If that doesn’t work, talk to neighbors and get names of the previous homeowners so you can do a name search, or so you can just call them up and ask them.

Knowing who the lending institution is will help you narrow down who the REO listing agent might be. This is critical in this whole process because you are eliminating competition.

If you still can’t find out who the lending institution is, you may have to do a skip trace to find the homeowner so you can ask.

Once you’ve identified who the lender is, a lot of time you can find the listing agent because they work with the same people all the time.

You need to contact them and let them know you are interested in purchasing the property. You also need to sound confident that you know what you are doing.

REO listing agent script

Here’s a sample script you can follow …

Hey [REO Listing Agent Name], this is [Your Name] – I’m calling about the house on [street address of property]. It’s my understanding you are the REO Listing Agent, and [Foreclosing Lender] ask that I contact you directly. Is this a good time?
Great! First, I want you to know that I’ve seen the property and really like it. Do you know what the bank is asking for it? (usually they will say “No” because they don’t have the listing yet. If they do, be ready to act immediately.)
Ok, I’m in the market for a property just like this. I have all cash, I can close when the lender is ready, and there are no other agents involved. So I’d be working with you directly on this. Is that ok? (they will say “YES” every time. They want both sides of the commission.)

When you get the listing agreement, would you mind calling me and allowing me to make an offer on it before it goes in the MLS?
Great. To make this easy, I’ll send you an email with my contact information. What is your email address? (By doing this, you’re also getting their email address so you can follow up with them, and you also have it for future reference if you come across another property with the same lender.)

Feel free to modify this script anyway you wish. The main points here are to make sure they know you have all cash, can close quickly, and they are getting 2 commissions, both buyer and listing side, so it’s a huge incentive for them to give you first crack at it.

In some cases, REO listing agents may already have investors like you that they already have relationships with.

If you want to get in the game, you have to prove to them you are a legitimate player. You may have to purchase a few from the MLS first before they realize you are serious.

So don’t be surprised if they don’t respond to you or give you the cold shoulder when you initially contact them. Don’t give up either.

There are a few things you can do to make your offer more appealing. Many times buyers will have contingencies in their purchase agreements like, contingent upon financing, contingent upon home inspection, etc.

If you want the bank to accept your offer, you need to show them you are serious and want to help them get this property out of their inventory so they don’t put it in the MLS.

If you want this property you should have an all cash offer, no contingencies, and can close very quickly (2 to 3 weeks).

This does not mean they will accept your offer every time, however, it sure is more appealing and persuasive.

How To Make All Cash Offers

So how are you able to make all cash offers? Simple. With Transactional Funding from us. We provide transactional funding for our students and charge no fee’s.

No closing costs, no processing fee’s, no holding fee’s, no wire fee’s, no nothing… and we provide unlimited proof of funds letters.

What’s the catch?

Well, you need to have an end buyer in place (which is not hard as long as you do it right), they need to be a cash buyer and it can’t exceed $600,000 which is not hard because you’re focusing on starter homes.

There is a membership fee. You have to be a member. I explain it all in this 30 minute video.

Or if you don’t want to use us, you can find a few others that do transactional funding or you can get private money. When you do the math, I’m sure you’ll be back to use our funds 😉

Once the REO listing agent calls you back and tells you what the bank is asking, you need to be ready to send them your offer.

At this point, you’ve already done all your research and know exactly what you should offer. As long as it fits your buying criteria, make the offer along with your proof of funds letter.

If the REO Listing Agent decides to list the property in the MLS instead, call up a different agent (one that you have worked with in the past) and make the offer through them.

You should know the maximum amount you can offer and still make a profit as long as you follow the formula which I will discuss later.

Do not get greedy when you do this. If you can profit anywhere from $10,000 – $15,000 on every deal, you should be happy. There will be times when one may fall in your lap where you get a nice paycheck, however, let’s be realistic and focus on the formulas. The profits will come naturally when you stick to the formula.

Please let me know if you have any questions or comments about this process.

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Loan modification on first but not home equity line of credit. Can they still foreclose?

January 8th, 2016 by Jarad

Question:  I have a first and a home equity line of credit. Payments stopped being made on both of them almost one year ago. However, I applied for a loan modification on both, and due to a bank error, only the first was modified. The equity line was sent to a collections agency. I am in the final stages of modification on the first. If my first is modified, what happens to the equity line of credit? Can they still foreclose?

Answer:  – The answer is Yes. Your second mortgage can still foreclose if you don’t make your payments. The first mortgage has nothing to do with the 2nd mortgage unless it’s with the same bank. For some reason, it seems as though some homeowners think that if they don’t pay the 2nd it will just disappear. So they keep paying the first mortgage and forget the 2nd. Well eventually they will foreclose.

So if I were you, you need to try and negotiate something with the 2nd. At least let them know you are trying to make payments or work out a solution. I’ve found that they are much more negotiable when a 3rd party talks to them. You might even have a good case for a settlement depending on your situation and the value of the property. But if they do settle for a fraction of the amount, you need to be in a position to pay it off. Or you can borrow the money from someone you know and let them become the 2nd lien holder and make payments to them.

Also understand that modifications are only temporary solutions just to give you time to better your financial situation. So make sure you don’t outlay a bunch of cash to modify only to find yourself in a worse situation or a situation where the 2nd won’t do anything and you’re forced to sell anyway. Then you’ve just lost money that you probably couldn’t afford to lose anyway.

Keep in mind too, the good modifications will cost you little if any upfront. They just add what you owe onto the back of the loan and re-calculate your payment.

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Making your offer to the bank

December 3rd, 2015 by Jarad

Preparing to make your offer to the bank

Once you have found that perfect REO “bank owned property”, you need to prepare to make your offer.

Man Signing ContractSo let’s recap… When you find a property with a lock box and no “FOR SALE” sign, the first thing you need to do is research.  You need to know who owns the property and what it’s worth so you know what to offer.   If you need help, re-read the previous sections on determining value, estimating repairs, and what to offer. [Continue Reading…]

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Understanding Your Market

August 28th, 2015 by Jarad

Understanding Your Market

Finding-PropertiesAs you start to get in this game, on of the first things you need to understand is your market and who you are targeting. This is important because you want to give yourself the best chance or opportunity to make money. So knowing your market can help you sell more real estate.

All markets throughout the country are different. But that’s ok, the important thing is to know what types of properties to target. For now, you want to target entry level homes in good neighborhoods. The reason is simple. More buyers. [Continue Reading…]

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Best Way To Find Real Estate Deals

July 18th, 2015 by Jarad

The Best Way to Find Real Estate Deals

magnifying-glassThere are several different ways you can find REO’s or bank owned properties. I personally don’t use all of them, but wanted to share with you some of the different ways to find great real estate deals. After I get through these, I will share with you what I have been doing lately to find some amazing deals.

The first way to find properties is through hud.gov (http://www.hud.gov./homes/homesforsale.cfm). This is a website which gives you information at your fingertips. You will be able to find foreclosure listings from: [Continue Reading…]

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