Buying or selling a home? There are different reasons why people buy or sell homes. If this is your first home, buying one seems like establishing ownership and perhaps equity in a home. If this is not your first home, maybe upgrading to a bigger one seems like the thing to do. Regardless of the reasons why you are thinking of buying a home, there are many pitfalls you have to be aware of before you commit the though to the actuality.
Even if a home inspection is done, it does not mean you won’t encounter issues with the home you are buying. Home issues that are undisclosed by the seller can be fought over in a court of law, but it is better to be prepared before you get to that point.
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I have a question about disclosure. My sellers gave me a disclosure statement that said there were no defects in the home. After we moved in and took down some drywall we found big cracks in the basement foundation. We also found major dry rot.
We called our buyer’s agent and she went to the seller’s agent. Apparently, they gave us the wrong disclosure statement. The old disclosure statement in the file mentioned the cracks. We didn’t get any of that. Should the listing agent pay for repairs?
When we usually get these questions, there is lots of smoke but no smoking gun. In this case, it seems you just found one. A seller is supposed to be truthful when answering the disclosure statement for the buyer. The buyer is entitled to rely on that disclosure statement in buying a home. And, if a seller lies, the buyer is entitled to go after the seller for damages sustained because of an omission in the disclosure statement given to the buyer.
When you own a home, repairs and improvements are inevitable, but keep in mind not every job is DIY. Before you head to the home improvement store, check out these common first-time homeowner mistakes.
Using Bleach for Everything
Bleach is a heavily corrosive material that can eat through sealant on stone surfaces like granite. It can discolor laminate and colored grout, fade enamel and acrylic tubs, and corrode seals within your disposal. It is the often the “go-to” for removing mold, and while it may be successful in some areas, it can actually feed mold growth on absorbent and porous materials, such as grout.
Good ole’ water and vinegar are really all you need for most household cleaning jobs. However, heftier mold or mildew issues, may require a commercial anti-fungal product.
Caulking seems like an easy enough job, but there are a million different products out there and choosing the right caulk is critical. The final choice depends on the project. Is it interior or exterior? Does it involve concrete, gutters, roof, moulding, windows, plumbing, etc.?
So your home has foundation problems and you just got an estimate for fixing it. Ouch! Or maybe a leak in your roof has led to the discovery that the entire thing needs to be replaced. Or termites have been eating their way through the wood frame of your home, and you’re just now catching on. Whatever the calamity, you always have the option of selling your home even if it needs major repairs. But does it make more sense to sell your house as is, or put big bucks toward a renovation?
Selling a fixer-upper—even without fixing the major issues
The good news is you can, in fact, sell a fixer-upper. (Let’s not forget where Chip and Joanna Gaines get those dumps to renovate on HGTV’s “Fixer Upper”!) Deciding to sell a home with foundation problems, for example, depends on your financial situation, your equity in the property, and the potential sale price for it, says David Long, a real estate agent with Ebby Halliday Realtors in Plano, TX.