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Aug '05

Ack! Who is Sirva?

So we thought we had negotiated and signed a contract to buy a new home, now we get a new contract to work with through a third party company, Sirva Relocation, LLC. We were told there was a little addendum that we needed to sign to just change the name to the seller’s LLC. We get faxed back 20 pages, including a blank contract and a 10 page rider of additional contigency clause changes and forms pushing us to use their services–even forcing us to use their services under certain conditions!

One of the obvious bad signs was that if you can’t get approved for a loan in ten days, they will provide you with financing. I wonder what kind of rates they would give to self-employeed folk doing stated doc’s like me? Or any person facing one of a countless number of possibilities which may delay getting a loan within ten days. Of course, there is no legal language saying you have any choice in terms that they give you either.

Of course, they also sent you a letter they want you to sign saying that they will be your closing, title, and escrow company. Oh yeah, if your closing company is late you get fined 1.5% of the value of the home per month. No conflict of interest there, of course.

Basically the contract is full of stipulations that if anything does go wrong, you’re going to pay for it and not them–regardless of where blame may lay. And if you talk to any real estate agents, in most home purchases something goes wrong somewhere. Oh, and they’ll sell your personal information to all their partners too.

My advice to you if you end up seeing a Sirva contract somewhere along the lines–cross it all out, inital & sign, and send it back! You’re state’s recommended forms should do just fine and protect Buyers and Sellers fairly in all common situations. If there is a provision that they can’t live without, you can negotiate but don’t let them herd and mug you in the alley.


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