Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Arizona Realtors Get the Gold, Lawyers and Car Salesmen Settle for Silver and Bronze

I have had a fantastic two weeks in Laughlin, Nv. Except for crooked realtors.

I've been here trying to find a house to buy. I am very near ground zero in the foreclosure crisis. I have seen well over one hundred homes in the Bullhead City/Fort Mojave area which is just across the river. Virtually every house I have seen is a a foreclosure. Short sales are a hideous pain in the ass due primarily to the banks. They just sit chilly on a full price offer. They are in no hurry to add to existing inventory. They can do this- thanks in no small part- to American taxpayers who backstopped their shitty balance sheets and replenished their reserves.

People, investors with cash have been buying a lot of homes down here. The ongoing transfer of wealth in America from the have nots to the haves- is in full bloom here.

Tonight I am getting ready to file a complaint with the Arizona Board of Realtors on a Bullhead City realtor. First a little background.

I have made a total of five offers on houses here in the past two weeks. Two of them have been three to five thousand over the asking price. I am still homeless. But the story I want to tell you happened over the weekend. It is priceless.

On Thursday, I stumbled onto a foreclosure that had just been placed on the market, that day. They had not even finished cleaning it up. It was in great shape- no holes in the walls, it was on a big lot, and it was owned by the bank. My realtor called the listing agent on Thursday afternoon and asked if there were any offers on the house. He said there were none. On Friday, we looked at the home in the afternoon. On Saturday morning, I made an offer 3k under the asking price which was emailed and faxed. On Monday, the listing agent informed my realtor that the home had been sold on Friday.

Let me tell you how this offer and answer shit works down here. Banks do no take the first offer they get nor do they answer right away. They wait until a bidding war erupts and then make more money. I am sure it is that way everywhere. What banks do not do, is sell homes to the first person who makes an offer. Unless I suppose it was so extraordinarily high that they couldn't refuse. But I doubt it. Quite honestly, I think this realtor has lied and banks don't know what the hell these guys are doing. They have hundreds of files on their desks.

Now I have been cursed with a highly vigilant mind honed to razor sharpness by 25 years of law enforcement. I know a deceptive and crooked statement when I hear one. And my bullshit meter hit the redline when I heard that statement. It simply flies in the face of what is in a bank's best interests and what I have experienced these past couple of weeks. Banks do not respond to offers quickly. I am still waiting to hear on an offer I made a week ago, nearly 10% over the asking price! I thought the law requires a broker to present all offers to a seller...but if you claim the home was sold in one day with the first offer...prior to my offer...then maybe you can get away with that shit. We'll see. I've learned over the years that any kind of justice comes on a slow boat from China.

So today, I put in another offer over the asking price on another house. This time the listing agent said, and I am quoting via email, "there is a deal in the works." What the fuck does that mean? The house isn't for sale? If that falls through then I guess he will present my offer to the seller. That these realtors are buying these foreclosures with friends and flipping them with a little work is hardly earth shattering. That I have been involved in two if these shady deals in one week is starting to piss me off just a bit.

I have no fondness for lawyers and car salesmen. I have shunned therapy and tranquilizers. After getting hosed on my last house (thanks in large measure to an owner who lied on the disclosure and a realtor who talked me out of the home inspection- we were all "friends" prior to the sale) and having lived through all of the shady shit that I have in the last two weeks...I am moving two Arizona realtors and one Idaho realtor into my top slot. This is a  sanctuary I reserve for lying, thieving, shysters. Gold medal types.

So tonight I am contemplating buying a house from a real live homeowner. It is not a foreclosure or a short sale so there is little opportunity for a "shysty" realtor to pull some scam. Yet. In the meantime, I have an online form to fill out for my latest gold medal winners.


richard said...

I was a realtor for 10 years, it sucked, so quit. But, what you stated is true. Shit goes on all the time. Listing agents always like to sell their listings. Some other agent comes in with an offer over the weekend takes a back set to his. Difficult to prove otherwise. Banks never make a decision in one day. More like a week plus. Especially with 4 million inventory, plus another 4 million coming online. Short sales suck, with a capital S!I left in 2002, but they havent changed sounds like. They can take a month or more to get an answer from the bank. To many fingers in the pie. Banks try to make the sellers sign a agreement to pay the difference, so those negotiations have to be completed first. Most times realtors are doing their best, but, shit happens behind the scenes they have no control over. I had a buyer and seller, negotiate after the signed deal was agreed. Then at closing it blew up, and then I found out they both had promised shit under the table. Its a crazy business model, work your ass off, pay for stuff up front and then hope to get paid at closing, 45 days to 1 year later. Glad I quit!

Brian said...

I know there are good realtors. I have friends (and one ex friend who is a realtor) that were decent people. Shitty hours, demanding people. But this scene down here is atrocious. Fascinating really. Thanks for writing Richard.

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It is always a prudent idea to hire the services of an experienced Realtor when buying or selling a home. It helps save time, obtain the most appropriate deal and achieve the best market value, which makes it worthwhile even after paying the Realtor's commission or fee.

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