I received an article on Facebook from a friend yesterday and I decided to blog my response. I think I shared with you my moving adventure earlier this month. Now I will share with you that I bought 2 properties in WA in 2004 and 2 properties in 2005. All from the proceeds of the sale of my condo in Channel Islands, CA. One of my friends was a lender with Countrywide. And again I was not in real estate and was depending on my lender and my agent to see me thru all this. What I learned from this is that it is not their responsibility. It is mine.
Being an agent today, I can truthfully say, my views have changed. It is my job to provide my clients with the best information available to help them make good decisions. I am not a lawyer or an accountant and I do not give legal advice. At any time, you can talk to a lawyer or accountant to get a better feeling about what you are doing. But the bottom line is, it is the buyers responsibility to do their due diligence in regards to making the biggest purchase of your life. Just because you can buy a home with very little down, doesn’t make it the right purchase for you. Read the contract and make sure you understand the terms. Get more than one good faith estimate. If they won’t give you one, something is amiss. I have had to learn the hard way…you don’t have to.
Inspecting the home.
If you are buying a home, you should plan to have a complete inspection done. I will provide 3 inspectors that my clients have used and respect. Generally, their cost is about $400, give or take. You can find them online for half of that and you are welcome to use them, but my experience is that you don’t get a complete inspection. Do they go into the attic and inspect? Do they crawl under the house and inspect? Are they certified for WA pest inspections? Do they run the appliances to see if they are working? Do they give you a written report with photos of the inspection? The most important part is that you plan to be present at the inspection. We have many unique reports and/or data that we supply to you to help you make the best decision for you.
I lucked out in that I bought two rentals in 2004 with 20 percent down and arm loans. I didn’t understand them to be honest. And I wasn’t present at the inspections because I bought them while living in CA. Big Mistake. Now that I am in real estate and have more experience, I realized what I had signed on for and was able to sell them in 2007 before I got into deeper trouble. So I am very careful when working with my clients to line them up with lenders that will take the time to explain the intricacies to them. It is a big purchase and I want you to be happy with your choices and have an awesome experience but buyers have to take responsibility for what they are signing. The biggest benefit to you will be that you will enjoy your new home and that you can learn from my experience.