Equator & Short Sales

On June 9, 2012, in Short Sale Lenders, Short Sale Process, by Santa Maria Short Sale Agent

Equator & Short Sales

You are probably wondering, what is Equator and how does it affect your short sale?  Equator is a web based computer portal/platform that allows your short sale agent to communicate and process your short sale in an efficient and secure fashion across the web.  Most of the major lenders, including Bank of America, Wells Fargo & GMAC (with the notable exception of CHASE) are now using this technology, although some are making better use of it than others.

Either the short sale lender or the short sale agent will initiate a short sale in Equator and then complete a series of tasks or steps.  Usually the first will be a validation of the Agent’s authority to receive and convey information on behalf of the homeowner.  Some short sale lenders (including Bank of America) have their own specific form that the homeowner must sign, and often they will also want a copy of the listing agreement in place between the real estate agent and home owner.

After the short sale agent’s identity and authority is properly validated, most lenders will then move on to offer submission and/or a valuation of the subject property.  They will do this either through an appraisal or a BPO (Broker Price Opinion) and the Equator status will usually read “BPO ordered” or “Valuations.”  After the valuation is received by the lender, the buyer’s identity validated, and the offer reviewed, many short sale lenders will issue a counter offer  or response through a “worksheet” on the Equator system.

The short sale lender can also communicate with the agent through secure messages in the Equator system.  Once the parties have completed price negotiations, the short sale approval letter will often be sent in the secure Equator system.  And, once the transaction is underway, preliminary and final closing statements will often be submitted for review to the lender through Equator.

As a short sale agent, I do like the Equator system, although it has it’s downfalls.  It has cut down tremendously on the “we never received that fax” dance that is so common, and still goes on with many lenders.  For example, when you call Bank of America’s short sale customer service line, the customer service representative can view the Equator file, so they know exactly where you are in processing, the messages sent and the documents submitted.  Overall, I think Equator based short sales run a lot smoother and at a quicker pace when you are dealing with a large institution.  Before deciding whether to short sell your home, it is essential that you obtain legal and tax advice, and consult with an experienced local short sale agent.

If you are considering a short sale of your Santa Maria, Orcutt, or Nipomo home and would like a short sale consultation, please call my office to schedule a meeting or a telephone consultation at (805) 938-9950.

Tni LeBlanc is an independent Real Estate Broker, Attorney, and Short Sale Agent. She is a Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE), Short Sale and Foreclosure Resource (SFR) and Certified HAFA Specialist (CHS) serving the Santa Maria, Orcutt and Five Cities area of the Central Coast of California.

* Nothing in this article is intended to solicit listings currently under contract with another broker. This article offers no legal or tax advice. Those considering a short sale are advised to consult with their own attorney for legal advice, and their tax professional for tax advice prior to entering into a short sale listing agreement.

Copyright© 2012 Tni LeBlanc *Equator & Short Sales*

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