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Am I required to fill out financials if I just want to see a particular house for sale?

This house is a HUD foreclosure and I don't even know if it's worth my time looking closely at.  The agent has been reluctant about answering pertinent questions and now told me I can't SEE the house until I fill out financial information.  I don't want to fill out anything until I know this house for sale is a viable option for purchase and I have a good idea of how much $ will be needed for repair/replacement.  It seems to me this process is backwards or am I just acting like a rookie home buyer?
  • February 21 2014 - Dover Plains
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Answers (4)

Skilled agents want to know that any prospect they show property to does in fact have the ability to buy.  We call it getting qualified.  As a REALTOR I don't want to know anything about the buyer's financial  situation but I also won't put them in the car until one of my lenders has issued a pre-approval letter.  In addition to knowing they can buy if they see what they want, it also provides a level of security for myself.   Every year agents turn up dead that went out to show property without knowing the people or getting them qualified.

One more thing,  if the buyer finds a property they want to buy we attach their pre-approval letter to the offer so the seller knows the deal is real.
  • March 16 2014
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Profile picture for tlynch26
The best step you can take before viewing any houses is to get a formal mortgage pre-approval from a local bank.  This not only helps you confirm what you can spend, but demonstrates to the listing agent you are a serious and "approved" buyer.

Good luck!
  • March 16 2014
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Profile picture for user4391864
Thank you so much for your advice - it did strike me as a little strange since I hadn't signed with this agent as yet.   Pre-approved buyers were not specified in the listing which is why I wanted to see the house before I decided to go with this sale prospect:  why waste both parties' time?   I appreciate your help, thanks again.
  • February 21 2014
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Unless your market is completely different from our area....You should not be required to fill out anything with the listing agent just to see the home. The only exception to that would be if there is any paperwork that addresses a serious health risk in entering the home; mold. This is common in HUD and or short sale homes as if there is possible mold the bank that owns the home doesn't want to be held liable.
Have you been pre-approved with a local lender?
This may be what the listing agent is referring to as a lot of sellers request only pre-approved buyers for showings. You are free to use whoever you wish as your lender. If you respect and like the listing agent they would be a good resource for lender referrals but you are not required to work with the listing agent or a lender they refer to you.
Hope that helps!
Good Luck!
  • February 21 2014
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