Bank of America

Short Sale Telephone: 866-880-1232   |   Short Sale Fax: 866-808-5050

Required for Initiation

  1. Loan Number
  2. Valuation Contact Information (the agent who will meet the BPO agent at the property)
  3. Reason for Default
  4. Property Occupancy Status
  5. BofA Short Sale Addendum
  6. BofA Authorization
  7. HUD-1 Statement
  8. Purchase Contract
  9. 4506T Form

The Process

Bank of America negotiates short sales through Equator, a structured negotiation interface for communication between lenders and borrower reps. Bank of America negotiates in three structured phases: Processing, Negotiation, and Closing.

A different person is assigned each role:

Processors: Collect additional documents, request document corrections, order appraisal, complete the file

Negotiators: Respond to the offer, respond to investor fee caps, determine relocation incentive eligibility, request investor-specific requirements, determine cash contribution requirements

Closers: Issue final HUD approval at the close of the transaction

Timeline for Approval

  1. Initiate the short sale on Equator, upload authorization for lender verification (5-7 days)
  2. Lender assigns Processor
  3. Processor collects documents and orders BPO (5-14 days)
  4. Processor forwards to Negotiator with completed BPO
  5. Negotiator reviews and responds to offer (7-15 days)
    1. Note: This time frame is highly dependent on how quickly the buyer/seller can return requested documents to the lender.
  6. After agreement on terms, negotiator submits for final approval to Investor (5-10 days)
  7. Investor issues approval letter, negotiator sends to borrower rep (5-10 days)
  8. Lender assigns Closer

Six Lender Specific Tips

  1. Return Documents ASAP: Bank of America gives very strict deadlines for the return of corrected/additional documents. Avoid file closure by checking Equator every day and managing expectations to prepare everyone to return documents quickly. Keep financial documents (e.g. bank statements and pay stubs constantly updated should they request updated versions).
  2. Wet Signatures: Bank of America requires wet signatures on every document. Cut down on document collection time by submitting wet- signed documents the first time.
  3. Complete Documents/Lender Specific Documents: Check every box, date every line, write “n/a” in every in every non-applicable section. Bank of America has a plethora of lender-specific documents they require (see below). Cut down on document collection time by submitting complete lender-specific documents at the outset.
  4. Communicate predominately through Equator: Bank of America is most responsive through the Equator system. The parties assigned are the only parties who have full access to the file.Cut down on phone time by emailing through EQ/secure email.
  5. Prepare for a third-party servicer: Bank of America often releases the negotiation of certain loans to third-parties for negotiations. These include: DTS, ServiceLink, and REDC. Their files will be worked through Equator.Request direct contact information for your servicer to cut down on transfer times from Bank of America. Call them directly for updates.
  6. Don’t rely on automated EQ messages for updates: Bank of America’s system sends out formatted automated messages in EQuator; most frequently, that the BPO has been ordered and that the file has a negotiator. Just because you receive a standard message doesn’t mean the lender has taken the stated action.Follow-up on any automated message with a phone-call to confirm the status.

Value Dispute Procedure:

Lender counters the offer higher than the parties believe the property is worth.

  1. Respond to lender's counter with the buyer's highest and best
  2. Provide an independent appraisal or full agent MLS sheets for three comparable sales (providing all characteristics), and if available, three active comparable property MLS sheets
  3. Provide a CMA report
  4. Comparable requirements:
    1. Closed sales no more than six months old
    2. Similar in size, age, condition and characteristics
    3. Within one mile proximity of the subject property; OR
  5. If there are Repair/Hazard Issues:
    1. Provide a line item repair estimate from a licensed contractor or engineer on business letterhead with the costs to cure the damage
    2. Provide photos of the damage
      1. Note: Excessive photos will be rejected
      2. Place photos in a zip file if sending more than three
  6. Time given to provide documents for value dispute: 24-48 hours
  7. Potential wait time for value dispute results: 2-4 weeks
    1. Note: This time can be expedited if you provide a complete dispute package and follow-up every 2-3 days.

Lender Escalation Procedure

Compared to other lenders, escalations may be necessary with Bank of America, as file movement is highly dependent on the person assigned. If more than five days have passed without movement on your file:

  1. Call Customer Service in the short sale department
  2. Request they email your assigned party for a response
  3. Send a message in EQ stating: “STATUS UPDATE FIRST REQUEST”

Wait 48 hours, if no response:

  1. Call Customer Service in the short sale department
  2. Request they email your assigned party and their supervisor stating you have not received a response for 7 days (the first 5 + 2 days after the first phone call)
  3. Send a message in EQ stating: “STATUS UPDATE SECOND REQUEST”

Wait 24 hours, if no response:

  1. Call Customer Service in the short sale department
  2. Request to speak to a supervisor
    1. Note: The representatives can transfer you to a supervisor, but expect to make the request to them between 2-4 times

If your file is worked by a third-party servicer (see above), attempt to get to a supervisor at BOTH Bank of America and the Servicer.

Note: Junior liens with Bank of America are negotiated using the same process. If both a first and second mortgage are held by Bank of America, they will likely be worked together by the same negotiator; however, you will need to request explicit confirmation that they will be worked together from you Processor.

Closing Process

  1. Send final HUD for approval: Bank of America typically requires the HUD-1 Settlement Statement be submitted for approval 24 hours prior to closing sent via email to the negotiator listed on the approval letter.
  2. Sign and Return Final Closing Materials: Bank of America will provide closing instructions and additional documents for signature once the HUD is approved on Equator.
    1. E.g. Short Sale Arms Length Affidavit, HAFA Affidavit, Approval Letter, Insurance  paperwork etc.
    2. Upload documents to Equator library and as attachment to the closer in Equator  message.
  3. Processing Tips:
    1. Include loan number and seller in the subject line of all email and fax correspondence
    2. Include a forwarding address for the seller at the bottom of the approval letter

Approval Extensions

To request an extension of an approval:

  1. Reach out to your contact in Equator with explanation. Wait 2 days, if no response, send another message, but include manager in Equator message as well.
  2. Call in and get the direct number for the closing officer to make the request.
  3. You may be assigned a task in Equator “Is closing on schedule?” select “no” and submit extension request.
  4. The approval extension will be granted in Equator with follow-up and closing instructions.