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11 Jul 2013
Buying a home from a bankruptcy trustee is complicated. If a homeowner files bankruptcy, all assets owned by the homeowner are controlled by the bankruptcy trustee, and a home cannot be sold without the trustee’s approval.
The homeowner looses control of selling the home and the process of selling the home once he files for bankruptcy. The process of buying a home from a bankruptcy trustee is governed by Federal law, and the whole process is defined by the trustee, not by the homeowner and the buyer.
The trustee can approve or disapprove the selling price. The trustee can set a time months into the future and say that he will accept all offers received up to that date, and then he will decide which offer is the best one. And get ready for this. The trustee can convert the transaction from a regular sale into an auction where he tells everyone who makes an offer what the other offers are, forcing all buyers to either bid higher or drop out. The homeowner selling the home completely loses control of his home. That is because the trustee’s loyalty is to the creditors, not the homeowner and not buyers.
The paperwork when buying a home from a bankruptcy trustee will get more complicated. The trustee will force you to sign an addendum saying that he is selling the home “as is,” which means the regular process for a home inspection or septic inspection or well inspection and credits for repairs or any discussion on repairs will not happen. Your real estate agent must understand the process and will need to draft special language to handle timelines that will change based on the trustee’s own plan and calendar.
If you’re even thinking about buying a home from a bankruptcy trustee, you may want to find a real estate agent who also has experience as an attorney and who has represented real estate clients in bankruptcy court. The process of buying a home from a bankruptcy trustee is going to be more than most buyers wish to endure.
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I am an experienced real estate buyer, but I am not from the Sequim area. I am somewhat flexible, realistic, but also particular. So the question was, “how do you choose the RIGHT real estate agent?”
I made my appointment with Chuck on a Sunday morning in March, 2013. He showed me 5 houses. Every house he showed me was within my parameters! I was amazed: a real estate who listened, did his research, and didn't waste my time showing me houses I would never buy! I made an offer a few days later. That was the easy part…
Buying a house is always a stressful time in life. Advice to Buyers: choose an agent who is competent, communicates well, and has exceptional follow-up and follow-through! You will spend a lot of time with your agent during the process. Choose someone likable. Go with your gut. I got to know Chuck during the process, and he's a great guy!
You need an agent who is competent to handle and help you negotiate the issues that come up during disclosure, home inspection, appraisal, etc. Chuck's competence is superb! I got truly professional, sound, straightforward advice.
Chuck's communication skills are exceptional: phone, email, fax. He has a wonderful ability to stay "on-point" with what is actually important and doesn't lead you astray on issues that aren't so important.
Chuck's turn-around time on questions, issue resolution, etc. was virtually always within 24 hours. He follows-up, follows-through. He does what he says he will do timely. This relieves a lot of Buyer stress!
Having a difficult time finding the right agent? Simplify your life! Choose Chuck Marunde. I did. [Name withheld by request]
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