My Life as a San Francisco Realtor: Short Sale Tales in the San Francisco Bay Area

Short Sale Tales in the San Francisco Bay Area

Short Sale Tales in the San Francisco Bay Area

There is no shortage of Short Sale Tales, mostly bad, some good - but this one just made me laugh. Kathleen Daniels in San Jose has written about a fair number of closings, or almost closings! This is a story, not about the closing, but the process with Bank of America.

Here's the background. We've got a great short sale listing in Marin County. An agent in San Francisco brought us a solid offer, all cash. A nice young couple. The process of entering the sale documents in BofA's Equator system was begun. An updated 'proof of funds' letter shows that Mom was providing the 'all cash'. Her advisors decided she should be on title too - to reap the benefits of her donation. So an addendum was added to add Mom to the transaction.

Problem is, the Equator system only has room for two buyer names, and those are already filled. The proof of funds name now doesn't match the initial buyer names. So the system has rejected the supporting documents.

Following is an email to the selling agent explaining the dilemma: (Names are all changed to protect the innocent)

Hi Agent,


We've run in to a problem in the Equator system. In the initial stages of getting everything entered in the system it is quite automatic and doesn't accept human intervention well. There is only space to enter TWO buyer names.


The addendum adding Mom has been made part of the purchase agreement but the automatic eyes of the system don't see it. This would be OK because we have been assured that eventually Mom will be approved by humans. But we can't change one of the names to Mom right now - it's already in 'the system'.


The problem is that the PROOF OF FUNDS does not include either (of the young couple's) names (who are the current TWO Buyers noted in the system). So the system is rejecting it.


As we see it there are two options.


1. Write a new purchase agreement with all three names in it, but use Mom as the initial name in the system. And get them to cancel the current transaction. We will just have to re-upload all documentation again. But the name of the buyer in the system will match the Proof of Funds.


2. Somehow have a Proof of Funds that includes at least one of the young couple's names.


Your thoughts? Please let us know....


Want to know what happened? Read on....

It was decided out here in the real world to cancel the initial contract and write a new one with all three names.  Then that would be submitted. Problem is, the Equator system has to ask you to do this. And it was happy with what it already had! To make a long story short, the Seller had to call Bank of America and request them to cancel the sale. Once that was done, we could re-enter the 'new' sale in the Equator system, and now we're finally moving forward again. We probably won't get any more 'human' intervention until a 'Negotiator' is assigned.


John M Scott, Broker / Owner, Scott Keys Properties, Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE), Council of Real Estate Brokerage Managers (CRB), serving San Francisco and the surrounding San Francisco Bay Area

Comment balloon 7 commentsJohn M. Scott • August 10 2011 10:08PM


Yeah David, it is kind of funny - the system vs. the human. Once you've started on the 'auto' process, it's hard to change it...

Posted by John M. Scott, Broker / Owner San Francisco Bay Area (BRE # 01442690, Scott Keys Properties) over 7 years ago

Oh wow.  Who's on first?

Posted by Jane Peters, Los Angeles real estate concierge services (Home Jane Realty) over 7 years ago


Another BOA horror story. Maybe we should collect all the Active Rainers experiences with BOA and write a book. Wonder how many volumes that will be?


Posted by Pacita Dimacali, Alameda/Contra Costa Counties CA (Alain Pinel) over 7 years ago

Jane, I don't know. I think we got it straightened out - for the moment.

Oh Pacita, i have another one. One that took over a year and then ended in a loan mod initiated by the 'investors'. I'll have to write that one next!

Posted by John M. Scott, Broker / Owner San Francisco Bay Area (BRE # 01442690, Scott Keys Properties) over 7 years ago


John, You must already know that I am sick, twisted and love pain and why I love Bank of America short sales so much! That is why I was LMAO reading this. Insanity in full bloom! Bank of America … not me … the world knows I am perfectly normal?

I had an email “discussion” with a negotiator on one of my BofA short sales.  She told me if I did not like the way Equator worked … I need to address that with the people who design Equator … she has nothing to do with it.  There are only so many fields … much like one size fits all … which in the real world … we know clearly does not. Most definitely does not in the world of short sales.  My new BoA theme song is: “The wheels on the bus go round and round – round and round – round and round …” Thanks for the shout out too! 


Posted by Kathleen Daniels, San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist (KD Realty - 408.972.1822) over 7 years ago

Kathleen, I'm glad I was able to entertain you - I knew you'd see this post eventually!

Posted by John M. Scott, Broker / Owner San Francisco Bay Area (BRE # 01442690, Scott Keys Properties) over 7 years ago

Bank of Asses just needs to get their crap together.  And to think, "someone" thought a paperless society would be a good thing.  Sometimes "systems" aren't all they are cracked up to be.  Oh wait, maybe those systems are just on crack.  Great post, John!  Added thanks for the chuckle.  (I know, not meant to be a funny post, but, kind of was.)  All the best!  :)

Posted by Karen Burket, Valley Mortgage Grou, Conventional, FHA, VA, mortgages (Bank of Oregon a division of Willamette Valley Bank ) over 7 years ago