As a small brokerage, I have significant concerns about the new Bank of America Third Party Authorization Form. My concerns about the new authorization are from a practical standpoint. Specifically, only authorizing a licensed real estate agent (or attorney) on a file is a logistical challenge. Here are my concerns from a practical standpoint:
1. As the only authorized agent, if only I can speak to or email Bank of America on my seller’s behalf, I have to be “available” and dedicated to phone or email without interruption by other business tasks or personal matters. If I were unavailable for any period of time, I might miss an instruction from Bank of America or fail to respond in a timely manner, since my paid employee who is my short sale administrator would be unable to respond in my absence
2. My employee who acts as short sale assistant will not be able to handle routine housekeeping or administrative matters via telephone (or email) with Bank of America. Examples: Equator reason for rejection: other, Question over specific paperwork to upload, problem with appraiser access, fax issues, negotiator calling and cannot leave a message if I am not physically available, etc.
3. Should I be the only party authorized to do any type of communication on my seller’s behalf, I would have to change my business practices: I could never be out sick, I could not go on vacation, I could not be on other appointments that take me away from a telephone or email for a day, I would have to become an administrator, which is less productive activity, than my skill set as manager
If I were unavailable, and my employee could not handle a routine matter, the borrower’s file will not be processed in a timely manner, in fact, the borrower’s file could be closed, and potentially, foreclosed on. As a small brokerage, with paid employees on staff, I cannot bring yet another party into my team, for example, asking another licensed real estate agent to “cover” for me to handle routine items or should I become ill or on vacation. Specializing in short sales requires a very tight budget and sometimes results in a negative business profit margin (e.g. they take two to three times longer than a traditional sale, and entail five times the administrative, phone, email, and fax effort). My concerns, and more, are being shared in forums throughout the country. In the past, I have been a big supporter of Bank of America, as you can see from a recent blog post, Bank of America of America Setting the Industry Standard.
This strict authorization, with no concern for practical matters, will be a severe impediment to the ability to be a successful small business owner and to aid to those facing foreclosure.
There are other concerns about the new third party authorization that I am not addressing here, regarding the authorized party having knowledge of what Bank of America or the investor “might” have decided had “other”, unnamed information been known. I’ll leave that for another post.
Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call toll-free 1-877-487-9639 or local 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy: [email protected]