Our Real Estate Blog
Real estate transactions have so many steps and moving parts they can feel unending. Your hard work and patience will pay off when you reach your closing day—as long as there are no unforeseen issues. Unfortunately, there are some common reasons that a closing can be delayed. While you cannot predict everything, you can familiarize yourself with some of the typical problems that can occur in order to prepare for them. Here are some of the most common reasons closing can be delayed:
The Buyer’s Mortgage Is Not Approved
Mortgage approval issues are the most common cause of home transactions being delayed or even terminated. During the approval process, a lender will observe your financial situation to monitor for any risky credit behavior. If they find something, it could either cause them to change the mortgage terms or deny the request outright. To avoid this, buyers should get full preapproval from their lender well before making an offer on a home but they should also avoid borrowing more money or opening new credit accounts until closing.
The Appraisal Is Too Low
Your mortgage lender requires an appraisal on the home to figure out its value. They then compare this appraisal with the listing price. If the appraisal comes back lower than the price of the home, you might have to negotiate with the seller to make up the difference. This can cause delays even if the buyer or seller can come to a quick agreement. The lender might require certain repairs to the property or a second appraisal done.
The Inspection Found Something Serious
Even if you take care of home inspections well in advance, there’s always the chance something will come up in a final walkthrough. You may also face a situation where the initial inspection found something serious, but the repairs are causing the delay. There are also some specific types of inspection (termite, mold or radon, to name a few) that lenders might require before granting final approval for the mortgage. Any delays in checking these boxes will push back your closing date.
There’s a Claim on the Title
You must acquire a title report as part of the escrow process. If the report shows anything negative on the title — either true or in error—the issues must be resolved before the sale can move forward. It’s common for homeowners to be completely unaware of title issues until they sell, which can cause delays and frustration. Getting a title insurance policy will help you in case there are any liens or claims to the property, but correcting the issue can still take time.
The Buyer Backs Out
Sometimes people simply change their minds. Unfortunately, this can mean a sudden cancellation of the entire transaction in the event a buyer walks away. A common part of real estate contracts is to have the buyer put down a deposit known as earnest money that shows their intent to follow through with the purchase. This gives the seller some extra monetary protection if the buyer leaves. However, it won’t make up for any lost time or effort.
Not every problem can be prevented but the more you know about potential issues before they arise, the better. Always go over contracts carefully and do things like appraisals and inspections as early as possible to prevent the more common.
There are a number of steps involved in buying a home. One of the many important things you should do before closing on a new home is to get the house properly inspected.
Buyers sometimes avoid getting a professional inspection for a number of reasons. Some are on a tight budget and want to save a few dollars. Others have time constraints and want to close as soon as possible. And, many buyers believe that omitting an inspection is a way to show trust in the previous owner.
In this article, we’ll talk about why getting a home inspection is such an important part before closing on a real estate deal.
Closing on a home comes with a number of expenses. Application fees, origination fees, underwriting fees… the list goes on. If you’re buying a home, you might be tempted to opt out of getting the property inspected to save money.
The cost of an inspection ranges anywhere from $200 for smaller homes, to $400 or more for large homes. However, the cost of not getting your home inspected can be much greater. Even if you’re knowledgeable when it comes to houses, there are a number of things that only the experts can diagnose.
Having a professional inspect the home is the only way to ensure that there aren’t any issues that will come back to haunt you (and your wallet) in the months and years to come.
Many buyers are eager to close the deal and begin moving into their new home as soon as possible. Sometimes buyers need to vacate their old home before a certain date, others try to time their move around holidays or school vacations.
There are other ways, however, to make sure you get the house inspected in time. First, make sure you’ve included a home inspection in your purchase agreement. This will avoid wasted times debating whether or not you are entitled to inspect the home.
Next, call multiple inspectors in your area for quotes and availability. Delaying this step can make you lose time, and inspectors might charge you more if they have to squeeze you into their schedule.
The best time to schedule an inspection is as soon as your offer is accepted.
Maintaining a good relationship with the seller
It may seem like an act of diplomacy to waive a home inspection. In reality, however, nearly all sellers will understand that you are simply doing due diligence to make sure the process runs smoothly for both of you.
Sellers might sometimes offer you the findings of a previous inspection that they had done. In this case, it’s still important to have your own inspection done so that you can walk through the home with the inspector and listen to their feedback. You can’t be sure of the accuracy of any old reports, and the previous inspector is only accountable to the seller.
Having a home professionally inspected is almost always a good idea. It can save you time and money in repairs that could have been avoided.
As you move forward with your home purchase, your real estate agent may recommend that you have your home inspected. Sometimes the inspection is required by the lender or insurance company, but sometimes it’s an optional step. Buyers who have the option sometimes consider skipping the inspection to save a little cash. Before you say “no” to the inspection, consider these reasons that it may be an important safety measure to take.
1. The Ability to Walk Away
When buying a home, you want to be completely sure that you’re not buying a home with problems that will cost you thousands after closing. Making an offer contingent on the results of an inspection allows you to legally walk away from your purchase contract if the inspector finds a serious issue. Without an inspection and this contingency, your offer is legally binding, and walking away is a costly choice.
2. Ensure Your Home Is Safe
Home inspectors know how to find problems that aren’t clear to the naked eye. From electrical wiring problems to hidden mold or problems with the home’s structure, knowing about these issues will protect you from buying a home that’s not safe to live in.
3. Improve Your Negotiating Position
If the inspection finds something wrong with the home that will be costly to fix, you can still buy the home if you wish. Armed with the information from the inspection, you can ask the seller to make repairs or give you a different price to cover the problems found. For instance, if the roof is in need of major repair, you can make a new offer that requires the seller to make those repairs, or you can offer at a lower price, using the difference to cover the repairs. Your real estate agent will help you understand the requests that are reasonable as you craft a new offer.
4. Enjoy Peace of Mind
A home inspection gives you peace of mind that you are buying a quality home. When the inspector gives it a stamp of approval, you can know that you are unlikely to have serious surprises when you move in.
5. Find Pest Problems
You don’t want to move in only to discover termites or roaches in the home. Pests can often go undetected until a serious infestation is present, but an inspector knows how to find the hidden signs of pests. Finding pests doesn’t mean you need to avoid the home, but it does mean you should ask the seller for professional pest control measures before you close on the property.
An inspection is an important step when buying a home. The cost of the inspection is small in comparison to the peace of mind and protection it brings. Even if it’s not required, make sure you request an inspection on your next home purchase.
If a seller accepts your offer to purchase his or her residence, it now may be time to schedule a house inspection. And if you have an expert home inspector at your side, you can get the information you need to determine whether to proceed with a house purchase.
Ultimately, there are several factors to consider as you evaluate a home inspector, and these include:
1. Industry Experience
It generally is a good idea to hire a home inspector who boasts plenty of industry experience. That way, you can work with an inspector who knows what it takes to analyze a house. And as a result, you may be better equipped than ever before to identify underlying house problems before you finalize a home purchase.
Ask a home inspector about his or her industry experience – you will be happy you did. If you dedicate time and resources to learn about a home inspector's industry experience, you can determine if this individual can help you assess all areas of a house.
2. Client Referrals
A home inspector should have no trouble providing client referrals upon request. With client referrals in hand, you can reach out to a home inspector's past clients and learn about their experiences working with this professional.
As you search for the right home inspector, you may want to contact several inspectors in your area as well. If you reach out to multiple inspectors and receive client referrals from them, you can boost the likelihood of making an informed hiring decision.
3. Your Homebuying Timeline
There is no guarantee that a home inspector will be available at your convenience. If you need to conduct a home inspection as soon as possible, you should search diligently for an inspector who can fulfill your request.
For those who want to quickly find a top-notch home inspector, there is no need to take shortcuts, either. Remember, a home purchase likely is one of the biggest transactions you will complete in your lifetime. If you fail to hire a highly trained inspector to evaluate a residence, you may struggle to identify potential home problems.
If you need extra help as you search for a house inspector, you may want to collaborate with a real estate agent, too. This housing market professional will guide you along the homebuying journey and ensure you can avoid costly, time-intensive mistakes.
A real estate agent can help you get in touch with the top-rated home inspectors in your area. Plus, he or she will provide plenty of guidance throughout the homebuying journey. If you ever have concerns or questions as you decide whether to purchase a house, a real estate agent can respond to them right away.
If you want to enjoy a successful homebuying experience, it helps to employ a first-rate house inspector. By considering the aforementioned factors, you can hire a superb home inspector to review all areas of a house. Then, you can obtain a home inspection report to help you make the best-possible decision about a house purchase.
The home inspection may seem like a standard thing that you need to go through in the process of buying a home. Really, you’re paying for the home inspection, and it’s a huge opportunity for you. As a home buyer, you should look at the home inspection as an educational event for homeowners. You’ll learn a lot about the history of the property that you’ll be living in. From water that may have been present in the basement to a leaky roof, you’ll get to know your new home and how everything works.
When you hire your home inspector, he or she may seem like they are talking to experts. For this reason, it’s a good idea to ask questions during the inspection so that you can clarify what the inspector is talking bout.
Is This Problem Urgent?
It’s a good idea to see how soon any problems in the house need to be fixed. If the roof needs to be replaced within 3-6 months and your finances are tight, it’s something that you’ll want to know about. While home inspectors will reserve their opinions about a property overall, professionally, they can tell you how big of an issue certain things are. You may need to hire a certified professional who specializes in a certain area like plumbing or electricity for further evaluation in many cases. For your own knowledge, it’s a good idea to know what needs to be done around the property and when.
You’re never going to remember where everything is in the house on the first pass. It’s a good idea to carry a notepad with you when you’re going through the home. Make notes of any major issues, where they are, and how to fix them. This way, even after the inspection report is sent, you’ll have something to refer back to.
Is This At The End Of Its Lifespan?
Your home inspector will take a look at all of the moving parts of the home that you’re about to purchase. This includes the appliances. Is the dishwasher on its last leg? Will you need a new refrigerator very soon? Is that creak in the floor more than just a problem with a floorboard? If you find out what to expect from both the major and minor issues in the home, you’ll have a better idea of what to expect from the property overall.
Home inspectors give you an overview of the condition of a home. Inspectors will tell you that there is no home that comes completely clean when it comes to an inspection. Even a brand new home that was just built will have some issues. While it may not be the most fun to find out that your new home needs a new roof, at least you and your realtor will know what needs to be brought to the negotiation table if you decide to go through with the purchase of the home.