Me and my fabulous son, Max

Me and my  fabulous son, Max
Powerscourt, Ireland

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Details, Details, Details

Larry & Marti~Long Beach~1998  in our 100 year old bungalow

It's been over 10 years since we bought a house and although the process seems easier than last time, I had forgotten what a pain in the a$$ it is to buy a house!

Since we have a great relationship with our bank, Navy Federal, we went to them for our loan.  First slight glitch, the loan application referred to me as "Marth" Lindsey.  Geesh...I've done business with them for over 30 years, paid off 2 mortgages and they can't even get my name right?

Financing locked in, we put an offer on a new place in the West Antelope Valley.  Our offer was accepted and this is where the reams and reams of paperwork really began.  We had a packet of papers titled "Escrow Instructions" that was 20 pages of tiny point font...each needed to be reviewed and signed and/or initialed.

Larry signing the first of many batches of paperwork!
Yippee, now we can open escrow!  We received the escrow paperwork and the next little glitch was that my last name was misspelled on this set of documents.  I guess they just wanted to make sure we were paying attention!  Now with names correctly spelled, we needed to read and sign and/or initial the 64 page Escrow Package!

Meanwhile, our bank is asking for A LOT of stuff:  Please close your credit cards and get us zero balance letters.  How about statements from your investment accounts?  Wait, that's a screen print, how about an actual paper copy?  You're self employed, great...just need several years of tax returns and P&L statements from the business.  Wait...we don't like the information the way you presented it...can you give us the exact same info presented in this manner?  This is a drawn out process because the request is presented to us by the loan officer and papers go to the loan processor.  The credit committee or tax department or someone else needs to review the info and then the questions/answers are relayed back through the loan officer.  I feel like we have an entire brigade of people working behind the scenes for us! for the silver lining!  We are buying a house that was foreclosed on.  This is not a short sale nor a foreclosure.  The term is a "REO" or Real Estate Owned Property for the bank.  All of the paperwork (hundreds of pages at this point) states that the property is "as-is".  When purchasing from an individual, this is just what it sounds like.  When you're buying from a bank, not really.

"As-is" Property in the West Antelope Valley
So far the bank has made the following improvements to the "as-is" property:
  • Put on a new roof
  • Installed a new Heating & Air Conditioning system
  • Installed a new stainless steel dishwasher
  • Installed a new stainless steel cook top
  • Installed a new stainless steel trash compactor
  • Installed a new stainless steel microwave
  • Painted the interior and exterior of the house
  • Installed new carpet throughout the 2700+ square foot house
  • Inspected & Pumped the Septic System
  • Inspected and mitigated (repaired) Termite Damage
The house has been inspected by numerous people and we have reports from all of them:  Real Estate Agent, Termite Guy, Well Company, Septic Guy, Home Appraiser, Certified Home Inspector.

Based on these reports, the bank has agreed to fix these additional items on the "as-is" house:
  • Remove damaged cabinets from the garage
  • Add stairs in the rear of house and repair stucco
  • Replace electrical outlet and add cover
  • Deliver a new load of Propane so the tank is full
Based on our experience so far, I would have to say that if you have to make a decision to buy a house from a person or a a house from the bank!  They have no emotional attachments and realize that the property needs to meet certain criteria for the loan to fund.  There is no messing around...they just fix it.

I fully expect there to be more things to pop up before we close.  Although there are a lot of details and sooooo many papers to read, review and sign, the end result is a new home.  I have to admit that the thought of sorting through and packing up all of our belongings is a nightmare.  More on this later!


No comments:

Post a Comment