Real world example of why dual agency should be illegal in every state

Dual agency is legal in Arizona, but not all states. I have long said dual agency should be illegal everywhere. I challenge anyone who supports the dual agency concept to tell me how they would have handled this.

You represent buyer and seller on a short sale. Buyer clearly believes that the seller should be paying to have a piece and landscaping removed and a pool repaired before closing or they will just let it foreclose. They believe they are in their right to ask for these repairs and want the agent to pay for them if the seller cannot.

The seller believes that the items are satisfactory and refuse to make the requested changes, but wants to avoid foreclosure which is less than a week away.

If you represent both, who do you represent here. One of them is NOT going to be happy with you or you are taking a commissionectomy.

When real estate gets tough what works better? Love or Jack?

The real estate market can be really tough right now. Buyers, sellers, investors, lenders or real estate agents, we are all having our challenges these days in the Phoenix East Valley market.

Real estate is a team sport, but you don’t get to chose the team, the team chooses you. Listing agents, buyer agents, sellers, buyers, title companies, lenders, contractors, inspectors, short sale squads and more.

Sometimes you look across the table and you say this is a good team, we are going to get the job done. Everyone has the same goal for a successful and smooth transaction. When those problems come up, and you know they will, everyone works together to find a mutually agreeable solution.  But sometimes, you look across the table and realize it is not going to be easy and it seems some members of team just want to make it as difficult as possible and you wonder if they even want the transaction to close at all.

What do you do when things get difficult? All you need is love!

Of course our Broker Jay Thompson sees things a little different and says sometimes there is an alternative to love.

The magical USDA loan in Arizona

Thanks to the magic of the USDA Home Loan you can buy a home in Arizona with no money! The qualifications are similar to the FHA Loan, but an FHA Loan has 3.5% down requirement from the buyer where a USDA Loan has no money down.

Just because you don’t need a downpayment does not mean you don’t need any money. You still need to pay for a home inspection and appraisal and traditional closing costs. Although you can try to get the seller to contribute to the traditional closing costs for you.

Not every home in the Phoenix and East Valley area are going to qualify. This is a rural housing loan so the house will need to be in the qualifying locations. One issue is with the new Census data, many areas which now qualify for a USDA loan will not shortly when the areas are reevaluated. The population growth in many of the outlying towns is going to make them ineligible.

So while the USDA loan is an option for some people, changes may make it an endangered species in the Phoenix metro area very soon.

Midnight loan modifications just dont work


A call at midnight alerted me to the notorious “Kristin Loan Modification Scam” – uh, wrong Kristin, here. In my opinion, loan mods are a total rip-off…

It is kind of ironic to use Kristin’s name to push loan modification scams because Kristin has a long history of calling loan mods what they are, a total waste of time.


In search of the smokin’ deal

East Valley Team member Kristin LaVanway talks about how East Valley buyers need to be realistic on their offers.

We get a lot of off-the-wall questions about Phoenix real estate…like this one. Buyers are still surprised when sellers don’t kneel down in gratitude when an offer – especially a CASH offer – is made. Buyers are not calling the shots in this market. Good homes are selling and selling fast – often at or even above the asking price.

East Valley short sale basic training

East Valley Team member Kristin LaVanway talks about how East Valley short sale buyers need to be more serious in their offers.

The East Valley Team is taking a stand. When a buyer submits an offer on a short sale – it is hazardous to everyone’s health (financially speaking) if they do not intent to execute that contract fully.

Gone are the days of putting lots of short sale offers in to see what sticks, Banks are digging and making the process much harder so the message from the East Valley Team is this: You better be serious if you put an offer in on one of our short sale listings.

We accepted banks short sale offer, now they want more money

East Valley Team member Dean Ouellette talks about how accepting the banks counter offer on a short sale is not the same having an accepted offer.

The bank will counter back on short sales and you would think once you have accepted the deal you are done right? Wrong! More often than not the bank is just the servicer and the investor still has to approve the deal too.

East Valley real estate negotiations 2011

East Valley Team member Kristin LaVanway talks about how real estate negotiations in the East Valley have changed.

Is it just me? It just doesn’t seem like it’s much fun any more to negotiate a real estate transaction. Short sale, REO’s and homeowners who have have watched all the equity drain from the homes have taken all the pleasure out of the process.

HAFA changes unlikely to change anything with East Valley short sales

East Valley Team member Dean Ouellette talks about the new changes in HAFA and their real world effect.

New changes were announced to HAFA this week. When he program was first announced I did a video that day saying why it would be failure. If you live in the Phoenix East Valley and have tried to do a HAFA short sale you have seen better than any what a failure it has been. The new changes will not change that.

If the Treasury department wants to get serious about making a difference they need to get some people who are on the ground day-to-day and ask for their input. Any real changes need to be meaningful.

Short sales and responsibility of buyers agent to be honest

East Valley Team member Kristin LaVanway talks about the responsibility of buyers agent in a short sale.

The buyer’s agent has a fiduciary responsibility to be honest to the buyer about the risks of buying a short sale while at the same time being honest to the seller and the seller’s agent. A short sale is not just a place to put an offer while you keep shopping. The buyer needs to know the risks involved of not only the short sale not being approved, but the risk of losing their earnest money if they find another house.