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Chas Carron's Advice
Contributions are sorted newest to oldest.
4 Best Answers
Chas Carron wrote:
what is title insurance? do i need that?
A few more thoughts: You pay a one-time fee for title insurance at closing and it's valid for as long as you or your heirs own the property. In Virginia, you can get an enhanced policy that will also cover you against such things as liens placed on the property after closing by workers who made repairs or improvements to the property that the seller failed to pay for, unpaid condo fees and assessments, etc. When you have a mortgage, the lender will require you to buy title insurance covering the amount of the loan, and you can buy owner's coverage to protect the amount of your down payment and your future equity as you pay off the mortgage. When you pay cash, title insurance is optional (at least, in Virginia, where I'm a licensed real estate salesperson). Title insurance (at least in Virginia) is very profitable for the title insurance agent, usually the company that handles the settlement. I have negotiated a 25% discount on title insurance for my clients. If the seller recently bought title insurance and the seller will provide you a copy of the policy, you may qualify for a "reissue" discounted rated. If this answer was helpful please click the thumbs-up below.
2 days ago
what is title insurance? do i need that?
Title insurance protects the buyer if a covered problem arises with the "title" (official record of ownership) that was not found during the title search, such as errors or omissions in deeds, mistakes made by the settlement agent in examining the title records, a forged deed (not unheard of in cases of divorce or death of an owner),or undisclosed heirs. Although these title problems are rare, if you don't buy title insurance, you could lose the property, and you may not be able to find the seller to sue (or the seller may not have the money to pay a judgment that you would get against him or her in court). I always buy title insurance on my own purchases, and I recommend owner's coverage to my buyer clients.
2 days ago
Home next to small town wastewater treatment facility
Even if this facility doesn't smell and doesn't bother you, will its proximity to the house be a cause for concern for prospective buyers when you eventually decide to sell? That alone would deter me from buying, even at a deep discount from the value of similar properties not near a water treatment facility.
3 days ago
Condo vs Single fam home in our income range
When comparing condos to detached houses, keep in mind that with the former you will have a condo fee, that is not tax-deductible, and there may be special assessments for major repairs or replacements of common elements (roofs, elevators, roads, swimming pool, etc. depending on the condo). While a detached house doesn't have a condo fee, you will have maintenance and repair expenses to the structure of the home over time. And there may be a homeowner association fee. If this was helpful please click on the thumbs-up below.
3 days ago
Can I Sign on a House Now and Delay Payment Until July?
I'd be cautious about following Susan's advice. Your mortgage will be based on owner occupancy. Most lenders will give you a maximum of 30 days to move into the property. If you are renting the new home back to the seller, or to a tenant, rather than living in it, you may be engaged in mortgage fraud. Lenders can find out whether you are living at the new address, for example, by checking whether you still are receiving mail at the old address. They can "call" the mortgage, meaning the full amount is then due and if you can't pay, you may lose the home and your down payment with it. Even if you find a lender that is willing to let you rent out the new home for a period of time, what if the tenant doesn't pay the rent, or refuses to move out? Your lease will expire, you will still owe the mortgage payment and property taxes on the new house, and you will have to go to court to evict the holdover tenant. On the other hand, Ofe's advice about when to look is off by a month. In my experience, buyers take at least a month to find their home of choice, then it takes six to eight weeks to get to closing. You will want to close mid-July so that you have time to move (and a cushion in case the closing on your purchase is delayed, which often happens). So, in mid-April, get approved for a mortgage, find a buyer agent you want to work with, and start looking seriously then, with the expectation of having a contract by mid-May, closing in mid-July. Before April, go to open houses to learn what is available and approximate prices. If this answer was helpful please click the thumbs-up icon below.
4 days ago
Buying home in Lincolnia VA good investment?
Current prices already reflect purchasers' expectations regarding future appreciation. Anyone who claims to be able to predict which neighborhood, city, county, state, region or country will appreciate more than another is just guessing. My advice to home buyers is to find a home in a location that meets their requirements and preferences for at least the next five years. Work with an experienced buyer agent who can help you determine the current market value of your home of choice so that you do not overpay. Don't count on appreciation. Although homes have appreciated over the long run, there have been several five-year periods in my real estate experience when homes declined in value. If this was helpful, please click the thumbs-up below. I'm a Zillow preferred agent and you can find lots of information about home buying on my Zillow profile and the Zillow-powered website that you can access from my profile page.
5 days ago
Two primary residences?
If the new home will be the primary residence of the people buying it (you and your wife), then the loan will be owner-occupied not investment. However, if your loan on the townhouse is a Veterans Administration loan, you may not be able to get another VA loan without paying off the one on the townhouse. Regardless of the type of loan, the lender will look at your and your wife's income, your credit scores, and your debt, including the mortgage payment and real estate taxes on the townhouse, to determine how much you can afford to borrow on the new home. Even if your parents are paying you rent while they live in the townhouse, the lender may not take that into account unless they have been paying it for a certain number of months, and even then, the lender may only take into account a portion of the rent as "income" to you because rental situations can change. In any event, I suggest you get preapproved for a loan, explaining the situation to your bank or mortgage broker. If the first one you go to is unhelpful, go to another. . . . If your parents are paying you rent, check with your homeowner insurance company to see if you need a landlord-tenant policy, especially after you move out; and check with your tax advisor regarding reporting the rental income and expenses, including depreciation. If this answer was helpful please click the thumbs-up below.
Home inspection advice on brand new town-home
In my experience as a real estate agent selling both new homes and older homes, new homes can have significant defects that you may not notice within thirty days or even a year. Therefore, I highly recommend a professional inspection. Check out the website of the American Society of Home Inspectors. I can't put the URL here but you should find it easily by using a search engine. By putting in your ZIP code in the "Find a Home Inspector" block in the upper right corner of the ASHI home page, you can get a list of local inspectors who are ASHI members. You can then contact them to find out what they inspect and how much they charge. I recommend using an inspector that will give you a printed report with photos of any defects found, via email and a hard copy. This makes it much easier to explain to the seller (in this case the builder) what was found and why it is a defect. If this was helpful please click the thumbs-up below.
Would a renovation costing 50,000 increase the selling price of my studio?
There's no way to answer your question in the abstract, without seeing your studio and also knowing what you are thinking of in the way of renovations. If you're actually planning to sell, call or email 2 or 3 real estate agents who are active in the East Village and have them do a comparative market analysis of your studio in its current condition, that is, the price they would recommend if you list the studio for sale with them based on sales of similar units in similar condition. Agents do comparative market analyses at no cost to you as a way of getting you to list the property for sale with them. Also tell them what renovations you are thinking of doing (without telling them the cost) and ask them how much that would add to the estimated value based on comparable sales of renovated studios. If you're not planning to sell, it's not fair to take the time of real estate agents to do comparative market analyses. However, you can go to open houses and see what other sellers are asking for unrenovated and renovated studios like yours (and see if they sell quickly, which is an indication that they probably got full price or close to it). [deleted by Zillow moderator. Please see our Good Neighbor Policy for posting guidelines]
Question as to what triggers a procuring clause?
In Virginia, where I sell real estate, a law enacted in 2012 now requires a listing agent to make a specific disclosure to "unrepresented" parties--even people dropping in to an open house if they don't already have a buyer agent--explaining that the listing broker and listing agent represent only the seller of the property. My disclosure to unrepresented parties goes on to explain that they can obtain their own representation from an agent/broker of their choice. All of that being said, dual representation still is lawful in Virginia if approved by the buyer and the seller. I would never represent the buyer and the seller because I consider the conflict of interest to be too great, even though it's legal. On the other hand, a buyer may want to be unrepresented. I can still draft the contract documents and provide "ministerial" services to make sure the transaction closes. I can offer a rebate from my commission to the buyer if he or she is unrepresented because I am not sharing my commission with a buyer agent. All of that is legal, and ethical. I don't agree that I should share my commission with a buyer agent who does nothing but draft the offer after I have paid money out of pocket for advertising, brochures, flyers, photos, etc. and spent lots of time composing social media listings and ads, showing the property, etc. I do share my commission with buyer agents when their work "procures" the buyer, not otherwise. ... A "procuring cause" claim is not brought by the listing broker. The listing broker gets the commission from the seller pursuant to the listing agreement. A "procuring cause" claim is brought by a broker other than the listing broker, against the listing broker, claiming a right to compensation (commission) for having "procured" the buyer. The burden is on the broker making the compensation/procuring cause claim to show that without the unbroken chain of his or her agent's efforts, the sale would not have occurred. It is not up to the buyer to decide who gets the commission that the seller is paying. That is a matter between the brokers, based upon the offer of compensation made by the listing broker to other brokers through the multiple listing service or otherwise consistent with the seller's instructions in the listing agreement. There is no law that requires a seller or a listing broker to offer any compensation to other brokers. Buyers can retain a buyer agent/broker that they pay themselves. What a buyer can't do is to change the terms of the compensation offer that the listing broker has made to other brokers. In Virginia, even if a broker or agent fails to make a legally required disclosure to a buyer, that does not affect the outcome of a "procuring cause" claim for compensation, although it may (and should) get the broker or agent into disciplinary trouble.
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