Ellen Corbett's Blog
As a homebuyer, it is easy to envision finding the perfect house, submitting an offer on it and acquiring it right away. However, it is important for buyers to consider the worst-case scenarios as well.
A buyer who understands the worst-case scenarios that he or she may encounter during the homebuying journey can plan accordingly. That way, this buyer will be better equipped than others to avoid various homebuying worst-case scenarios altogether.
Now, let's take a look at three common homebuying worst-case scenarios, as well as how buyers can avoid these situations.
1. You find your dream home, but it falls outside your price range.
If you enter the housing market without a mortgage in hand, you may need to act quickly to acquire the necessary financing to purchase your dream house. But once you kick off a search for a mortgage, you may find that the cost to acquire your dream home falls outside your budget.
When it comes to getting home financing, it often helps to be proactive. Fortunately, if you meet with banks and credit unions before you launch a home search, you can determine exactly how much money you can spend on a residence.
Banks and credit unions employ friendly, knowledgeable mortgage professionals. With these mortgage experts at your side, you should have no trouble getting pre-approved for a mortgage at your convenience.
2. You discover a wide range of problems during a home inspection.
A home inspection likely will be completed in the days after a seller accepts your offer on a residence. And in some instances, an inspection may force you to reconsider whether you want to purchase a house.
If you encounter problems during a home inspection, you still have lots of options. You can ask a seller to perform assorted home repairs or reduce your offer. Or, you can walk away from a home sale and restart your home search.
For homebuyers who are worried about any problems that they encounter during a home inspection, it is paramount to look closely at all of the aforementioned options. By doing so, you can make an informed decision about whether to proceed with a home purchase or reenter the housing market.
3. You employ a real estate agent who fails to help you achieve your homebuying goals.
Many real estate agents are available in cities and towns nationwide. But if you fail to conduct an extensive search for the right real estate agent, you may struggle to accomplish your homebuying goals.
When choosing a real estate agent, you should learn about this housing market professional's industry experience. It also helps to meet face-to-face with a real estate agent and discuss your homebuying goals with him or her. This will enable you to determine whether you're comfortable working with a particular real estate agent.
Enjoy a quick, stress-free homebuying experience – consider the aforementioned worst-case homebuying scenarios, and you can minimize the risk of potential pitfalls throughout the homebuying journey.
An active housing market has reduced the number of foreclosed homes in inventory, but there will always be foreclosed homes available to purchase. Many buyers are not aware of what to expect when purchasing a foreclosure. Here are some home truths about buying a distressed home.
You’re not always getting a deal.
Many buyers believe foreclosed homes sell at rock-bottom prices. They expect massive and unrealistic discounts. While the bank may be willing to sell for well below the fair market value, their goal is to recover the loss they incurred when providing the original mortgage. Additionally, foreclosed properties may have long-standing maintenance issues that require a substantial investment to remedy.
The bank may not have the only lien.
A foreclosure removes the primary mortgage debt, but a distressed property may have other claims for money owed in back taxes, for mechanical work and contractors’ fees. A complete title search should tell you if there are liens that need satisfaction when you purchase a property. Your real estate agent can guide you in how to discover unsatisfied liens or judgments against the property
You may find maintenance problems.
Most owners do not simply move out of the property when they can no longer afford to make payments. When an original owner loses income, maintenance often becomes a low priority. And, if they have a medical disaster, a decline in health often means a decline in care for the property. Storm damage, pests, and other hidden issues mean damage to a home that gets overlooked when the owner has different priorities.
You may find vandal activity.
Although there are some stories of angry owners vandalizing the foreclosed property that they invested their life savings into, more often are issues with opportunistic thieves. They remove plumbing and light fixtures, paver stones, and other readily accessible objects from an abandoned property.
Schedule a thorough inspection before you purchase if possible so that you know what you're getting. Your real estate professional specializing in distressed properties can connect you with an unbiased inspector. They will report on your potential new home and help you uncover any hidden costs lurking there.
18 Edgemoor Circle, Wellesley, MA 02482
Each year, cleaning the gutters consistently lands at the top of the spring cleaning list and for good reason. By clearing out leaves and other debris, you protect your roof and living space from potentially disastrous water leaks. If you want to prevent other costly and time-consuming home repairs, you have to think beyond the gutters, however, to all the other areas of your house. Here’s a rundown of the oft-overlooked spring cleaning tasks that can protect you from major issues in the future.
Suck Lint Out of the Dryer Vents
Even when you consistently clear out the lint trap in your dryer, the ducts running from the back of the machine and down under the house accumulate lint. Without regular removal, the dust and fluff will continue to pile up, posing a serious fire hazard. Thankfully, you can easily clean it out of all the ductwork by using a dryer lint brush and shop vacuum. Just alternate between these two tools until no more lint comes out of the vents.
Blow Out Your Smoke Detectors
Dust, pollen and other debris can build up in smoke detectors, rendering their sensors nearly useless. Eventually, the buildup causes false alarms or causes the detector to malfunction altogether. You can keep this problem at bay by committing to a twice a year cleaning schedule coinciding with battery changes. And it is easy, too. All you have to do clean out the dust and debris is blow out the case with compressed air.
Clear Window Weep Holes
At the bottom of your window frames are weep holes that allow water to drip away from the seals. As they become clogged with dirt and grime, however, the water could leak inside your house, damaging the drywall and other building materials. To prevent this issue, clean the weep holes with a small bit of wire or by spraying them out with compressed air.
Brush Off Refrigerator Coils
Your refrigerator has a network of coils along the back that cycle refrigerant through the system, keeping all your food at the proper temperature. As these coils operate, they attract dust and debris at a rapid rate. When this happens, the refrigerator cannot release heat and has to cycle the compressor on much more frequently.
Unless you intervene by removing the dust, this can reduce the life of this appliance by several years. To clean them off, unplug the machine, pull it out from the wall and use a long-handled duster to clear off the coils. Then, vacuum or sweep up any dirt that hits the ground before putting the fridge back.
Each of these spring cleaning tasks only takes a few minutes to complete and provides lasting benefits through every season. So, put them on your list and get them done to prevent costly problems in the future.