I never really used sftp before but I have finally have it figured out. I have been using Filezilla as the sftp client. The problems have been arising from the user permissions on the web site. As Art likes to complain user permissions in Linux are a lot different and especially with SELinux turned on. For an individual user to upload files to the web root to maintain the site the options are
1) upload the files to your shell account, unpack the files, copy to the correct location on the web path, chown to apache:apache, then execute
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$ unzip my_files
$ sudo su -
# cd /home/myuser/
# cp my_files /web_path/my_directory/ -R
# chcon -R -t httpd_sys_content_t /web_path/my_directory
2) I have changed to permissions on the phpBB3 directory so that sftp should work from inside the Administrative Control Panel. Automod has an sftp function to allow admins to upload mods to the phpBB3 site without using the the above Linux-speak.
3) same is true for the wordpress site.
Let me know if you are still having problems.