Most of the time a home sale goes smoothly. The sellers want to sell, the buyers want to buy and a couple of Realtors have helped the process run like a well-oiled machine.
That’s the norm.
Then there are the real estate horror stories.
There are a multitude of ways a new home purchase can be a horror. It could be like this family in Idaho that purchased ‘Satan’s Lair’ — a house filled to overflowing with snakes.
It could be a paper nightmare caused by a relentless stream of paperwork and lender decisions that make you want to throw your hands in the air and give up.
As things become more complex, the opportunity for things to go wrong increases exponentially.
Let’s look at a few ways your Louisville home purchase could go horribly wrong and the steps you should take to make sure it doesn’t.
Nightmare Financing Ordeal
I know this isn’t always the case, but ideally prospective home buyers will talk to their Louisville loan specialist before they begin searching for their dream home. The reason this is important is because it gives them a clear picture of what they can and can not afford before falling in love with the gem of a home that in actuality is out of their price range.
It’s been my experience that dealing with people face to face is far better than over the phone. That’s why I recommend to all my clients that they should find a local, as in right here in Louisville, loan specialist to walk them through the ever increasing complexity that is today’s mortgage.
I’m sure that Chase and Citi are fine organizations that can offer amazing “deals” but those financial products may not be the best fit for you and your financial situation. Even worse, if there’s a problem, good luck trying to get someone knows the details of your loan on the phone.
Far better to find a local mortgage expert, who you can meet for coffee at Starbucks and ask as many questions as you like. When interviewing, make sure to ask how many years they’ve been in the business and if this is their full-time job. If it’s “something I do on the side” run away as fast as your legs will carry you!
Insane Real Estate Agents
After financing is decided (or possibly in tandem), a home buyer needs to find a great Realtor.
That may not be as easy as it sounds. Like most things in life, things seem better from afar but once you get up close, the warts become apparent.
The very best way to find a trustworthy professional is by referral. Speak to you closest friends and family and ask them, “Do you love your Realtor?”
Perhaps, “love” is the wrong term but you get the picture.
Here’s what might happen if you chose to use your sister-in-law’s great uncle, just because he’s family.
- Steering: This is when an agent promotes certain properties over others because they are more expensive or may offer a larger commission. Top agents put you first!
- Overload: Agents that sell the most homes work dozens of deals at the same time. Are they going to be responsive to your needs among the many requests for their time? Or will they hand you off to a “team member” who’s really just a part-time assistant?
- Strong Arm Tactics: This is when an agent pushes for a quick purchase so that they can get paid and move on to the next deal.
- Absenteeism: There are agents (no names will be mentioned) that take a great deal of time off for vacations, golf, what-have-you. If that time period coincides with your urgent need for service, look out.
Horrible Louisville Homes
Ahh … now we come to the not-so-fun part of the equation. We’ve all heard about the proverbial money pit, right? Every home has flaws, even new construction. The key is identifying as many of those flaws as possible before being committed to a purchase.
The standard Greater Louisville Association of Realtors purchase documents are slanted in favor of the home buyer over the home seller. As long as the buyer hires an inspector, an inspection is performed and a report is given, that buyer has to the right to walk away from what could be a horrible Louisville home.
Finding a great Louisville home inspector is the key. Again, referrals are your best option. Look for one that’s been in the business a minimum of five year, though 10 is even better.
If they have past building experience, that’s another notch in their belt.
Avoiding Your Louisville Horror Story
If you follow the steps outlined here, you will avoid 99 percent of the danger. There’s still a small chance your next Louisville home could be a nightmare come true, but I’d take those odds any day of the week.