DVC RESALES
DVC RESALES

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Old 12-30-2011, 02:11 PM   #1
GrnMtnMan
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Buying Resale: Small Broker or Professional Company?

Now that the points are mine and I've made my first reservation, I feel comfortable sharing my thoughts on how my resale purchase went with a small sales broker.

Sales Broker
Bottom line is is was extremely underwhelmed by my sales broker, who is a sole proprietor. Having gone through the purchase of one home and the sale of another in the last 18 months, I guess I expected too much from my broker given my recent experience with real estate agents. It took way too long for her to respond to my questions. And when the deal was looking like it might head south, she apparently wasn't available.

My real estate agent for my other transactions was available 24/7 and did all the necessary shepherding and hand-holding to get the deal done. The broker I used for my DVC purchase sometime took 48 hours to respond to emails (I didn't have that many questions). She let the title agent deal with way too many of my questions. And she was not on top of the sellers to get their docs in.
Title Company
There was one thing I do not like about how the title company handled things, and that has to do with money. As soon as I got my closing documents, I spoke with the title agent and clearly indicated that I was going to be wiring funds - I went to my bank that day and did so. Well, it took more than two weeks from that point for the sellers to get their docs in, and all-the-while the title company had my money. The title company should advise buyers who are wiring the funds to wait until closing is imminent to do the actual transfer. Its one thing for closing to take awhile....it's another when they have all the cash and you're waiting.
So my advice is to go with a more professional sales broker with multiple staff members if you're looking to buy resale...I'm assuming they are more responsive than my sole-proprietor broker. Anybody have a similar experience? Would a professional business with more staff been more responsive?

And here's a detailed time-line of the events:
Quote:
- Day 0: Receive closing docs from title agent (passed DVC ROFR several days ago).

- Day 0: Call title agent and ask questions about wiring funds. Tell title agent that I will be wiring that day, and I do so.

- Day 1: neither title agent nor sales broker automatically verify that funds and documents were received....it took an email from me to find out.

- Day 1-2: have a question about timeline for closing and sales broker takes nearly 24 hours to respond. And the response is general and non-specific to my transaction.

- Day 3: I email title agent to ask same timeline question. Responds quickly, but just with general information (title company now has had my money for three days).

- Day 4: I email sales broker to have broker check-in with sellers. Learn at this point that, according to the title agent, sellers have been 'out-of-town' and will not be getting sales document notarized until Day 8. Note that the broker did not respond to this question.

- Day 8: At 1 PM email both title agent and sales broker to find out if sellers have sent documents. It took 24 hours and a second email from me to get a response (response is that sellers had mailed documents earlier that week). Another non-response from my broker

- Day 14: Email broker and title agent asking if sellers documents had been received. Learn from title agent at that sellers documents were received December 16, but were not done properly and had to be re-done. Sales broker does not respond to any of the day's emails until well after business hours.

- Day 16: Email broker to get a status update...before she responds get an email from title agent that I've closed an the transaction is complete.

Day 17 was the latest closing date I agreed to in my contract.
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BLT 9/09, 12/10 - Father-Daughter Trip, 10/11, 10/12, 10/13, 10/14

Disney-Like: Atlantis - Paradise Island 3/01, 3/02, 9/03, 9/05, 3/07, 4/08, 3/09, 4/10, 3/11, 4/12, 3/13, 4/14, 4/15

Last edited by GrnMtnMan; 12-30-2011 at 02:15 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 12-30-2011, 02:34 PM   #2
KAT4DISNEY
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My experiences have been pretty much the same no matter if it was a sole proprietor type or there were several staff. About the only difference was in calling where another person could take the call and most likely help me out.

Regarding the title company I wouldn't say that they were incorrect as they also would not have known how quickly the sellers would return the paperwork or even how quickly a buyer will actuallly get the funds in no matter what they say. That comment isn't applying to you but is just in general - YKWIM?

DVC is purchasing an interest in real estate but it's also not the same as a house.A time or two I might have liked a faster response but that was more a wish than a real need. Overall I'd say your experience was certainly not atypical not matter the size of the broker's company.
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Old 12-30-2011, 02:50 PM   #3
GrnMtnMan
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Thanks for your insight...it helps me get some perspective.
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Originally Posted by KAT4DISNEY View Post
Regarding the title company I wouldn't say that they were incorrect as they also would not have known how quickly the sellers would return the paperwork or even how quickly a buyer will actuallly get the funds in no matter what they say. That comment isn't applying to you but is just in general - YKWIM?
IKWYM

I'll counter that there's a real difference that the title company ought to respect: they, as title agent, are already holding a substantial sum of money from the buyer before closing...whereas they have nothing but promise from the seller. Yes, buyers might drag their feet on getting final payment in, but some of the money is already there, clearly indicating that they buyer will be going through with the transactions. There's no such financial commitment at this point from the seller.

So the title agent shouldn't be so hot-to-trot to take my money for the purpose of administrative ease.
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Originally Posted by KAT4DISNEY View Post
DVC is purchasing an interest in real estate but it's also not the same as a house.A time or two I might have liked a faster response but that was more a wish than a real need. Overall I'd say your experience was certainly not atypical not matter the size of the broker's company.
This is helpful too. But let me clarify further: the sales agent missed an entire day of emails where I was trying to find out my options if the sellers failed to get docs in. The sales broker was asked by the title agent to answer one of my questions....and it took her more than 8 hours to respond. Is that a normal drop-the-ball or an unusual one?
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BLT 9/09, 12/10 - Father-Daughter Trip, 10/11, 10/12, 10/13, 10/14

Disney-Like: Atlantis - Paradise Island 3/01, 3/02, 9/03, 9/05, 3/07, 4/08, 3/09, 4/10, 3/11, 4/12, 3/13, 4/14, 4/15
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Old 12-30-2011, 03:08 PM   #4
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It's worth pointing out that the commission on those real estate deals was probably worth quite a bit more than the commission on a DVC contract. In light of that, I'm not sure it is fair to have the same expectations.
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Old 12-30-2011, 10:00 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrnMtnMan View Post
Thanks for your insight...it helps me get some perspective.
IKWYM

I'll counter that there's a real difference that the title company ought to respect: they, as title agent, are already holding a substantial sum of money from the buyer before closing...whereas they have nothing but promise from the seller. Yes, buyers might drag their feet on getting final payment in, but some of the money is already there, clearly indicating that they buyer will be going through with the transactions. There's no such financial commitment at this point from the seller.

So the title agent shouldn't be so hot-to-trot to take my money for the purpose of administrative ease.
Well, the title company doesn't "take" the money. The buyer must send it to them and the speed in which they do that is up to the buyer. I've never bothered with the expense to wire money b/c it's going to be pretty rare for a seller to be able to get paperwork back that quickly although that happened with one of our contracts. In the end the closing date in the contract is the legal part and it's up to the interested parties to decide how to proceed - ie, send the money fast or to wait until the last possible second. The title company will advise in a manner that will facilitate the fastest closing and then it becomes dependent on the buyer and seller.

And, the fact that there isn't any skin in the game from the seller is another reason why the title company is there with their escrow account. You can feel secure you will receive your funds back if the sellers don't follow thru.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GrnMtnMan View Post
This is helpful too. But let me clarify further: the sales agent missed an entire day of emails where I was trying to find out my options if the sellers failed to get docs in. The sales broker was asked by the title agent to answer one of my questions....and it took her more than 8 hours to respond. Is that a normal drop-the-ball or an unusual one?
I've also had similar response time from the "professional" company you referred to. If I need a faster response I'll pick up the phone and not use email so I know right away if they know there's a question.

As Brian mentioned - the skin in the game from everyone is less than buying a house (in most cases). And everyone needs at least one day off now and then. I still don't consider anything you experienced to be that unusual but a larger company will be able to cover for days off or sickness that a small one can't.
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Old 01-03-2012, 08:38 AM   #6
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Thanks again.

Bottom line: I get that my expectations were probably a bit too high, and the there probably isn't much difference based on the size of agency. But I still think there are several things in the process that could be improved without too much effort.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Noble View Post
It's worth pointing out that the commission on those real estate deals was probably worth quite a bit more than the commission on a DVC contract. In light of that, I'm not sure it is fair to have the same expectations.
True....the commission is smaller here. But the transaction is much simpler, there is barely any marketing expense, there are no inspections, radon tests, drives to a thousand houses to check out, etc.

So providing lousy service beacuse someone thinks they aren't being paid enough really isn't an excuse.
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The title company will advise
They didn't advise me of anything....that's the biggest part of my beef. I informed them I would be sending the money post-haste, and they said nothing.

A sin of omission, yes, but a sin nonetheless. They know how these things go....they do it everyday. I do it once (or just a few) times in a lifetime. Some sort of advice was in order like 'send the money soon and we'll close ASAP, but that might be a while' ...or... 'hold on to the funds a few days, it usually takes sellers a while to get their notarized docs in'.
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CBR 3/00
YC 10/02, 9/06
Dolphin 10/04
DL - Grand Californian 3/06
Disneyland Paris 9/07
Swan 9/08, 6/10
BLT 9/09, 12/10 - Father-Daughter Trip, 10/11, 10/12, 10/13, 10/14

Disney-Like: Atlantis - Paradise Island 3/01, 3/02, 9/03, 9/05, 3/07, 4/08, 3/09, 4/10, 3/11, 4/12, 3/13, 4/14, 4/15
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Old 01-03-2012, 09:51 AM   #7
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GrnMtnMan, I'd agree with you on many counts. I too have very high expectations. I've come to realize most companies, big or small, real estate or other, don't always stay on top of their duties. I guess there is no explicit contractual commitment that they need to respond within a certain time.

Besides, it is not so much big company or small company. It is the particular person you happen to deal with. May be it is human nature to procrastinate. So next time you get super quick responses, consider yourself lucky.
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Old 01-03-2012, 01:33 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrnMtnMan View Post
They didn't advise me of anything....'.
They advised you to send in your money .....(to allow for closing). What you prefer to ignore is that they actually have no control over either party and how quickly they send required paperwork or funds in. You had a scheduled closing date on your paperwork and could have elected to stick to that but I'd guess you preferred to try and close sooner so you sent in your funds.

With most real estate closings you are doing it in person by scheduled appointment and the title company knows exactly where the process is and when things will be done. Thru the mail is a whole different thing. I'd just refer to it as a lesson learned about the process rather than negligence or withholding info. A quick search on the forums here would have turned up many threads about sellers not returning paperwork promptly. I, on the otherhand had a buyer do the same. It happens. But if my transactions have been indicative of normal then the norm is for both parties to respond promptly when paperwork is received and you could just have easily been the slow party if you had waited to send funds.

Now get prepared for DVC and their communication! lol
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