I heard this evening from David Cleveland, the house-hunter we introduced you to last week who recently moved to San Diego from Denver. You can catch up on Cleveland’s situation in that intro post.

Cleveland began with a recap of last week. His wife, Jill, and their real estate agent identified eight homes that had been newly listed on the market as of last Monday, by searching the MLS for their target areas of Carlsbad, Rancho Bernardo or La Mesa. On Tuesday, they went through all eight houses. Wednesday morning, the agent called the selling agents for three of the houses Jill liked, asking about the status and history of the house.

David Cleveland sleeps on a boat and showers at the gym, and his wife and kids stay with family in Orange County, while they navigate the local housing market.

Each of those three houses was in foreclosure, but in each case, the selling agent already had accepted multiple offers and submitted them to the bank, basically cutting the Clevelands off from making an offer on those.

Here’s Cleveland, in his own words:

Last week was not typical, but is becoming more the norm for our search. …

What is happening is that each bank, and its associated broker for the foreclosed house, seem to have different rules that they go by as far as how they want to proceed.  In one case the selling agent collects a number of offers and sends them all in for evaluation, in another case the selling agent may send over the first offer it receives.  Regardless of the method though, the house is effectively out of play. 

Based on some research we’ve done recently however, it appears likely that a number of these type of offers will not go through due to the buyer not being able to obtain their financing. So for each of the 3 homes we didn’t get to place offers on we at least sent the selling agent a letter of intent indicating that if for some reason the sale of the property doesn’t go through, that we would like the opportunity to get our offer in. 

Obviously there is no guarantee that the proposed sale will not close, or that if the property does come back on the market that we would win in a bidding war, but it does potentially get our foot in the door if something should happen. We’ve also started to go back and inquire of the properties we’d previously placed offers on but were outbid as to the current status and making sure the selling agent knows we are still interested. 

As of this morning, Jill reports that there are no new listings in our target areas but we are checking each day.

We’ll keep you posted on the Clevelands’ progress. If you have any thoughts about their search or another of these topics, you can send me an e-mail at kelly.bennett@voiceofsandiego.org.


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