Our Mortgage Advisors are involved in many real estate transactions and hear all kinds of stories about them. And we are often asked what questions buyers should ask sellers. After all, buyers will receive plenty of information from the seller’s disclosure agreement, the home inspector, and maybe even their new neighbors. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t a few questions they should ask the seller at the walkthrough or before closing.
One is, “Have you had any past problems with the home that you’ve repaired?” Sellers typically must disclose existing problems or issues related to the home, but they aren’t always required to disclose past problems that have been repaired. Our Mortgage Advisors often remind clients to use the disclosure as a starting point to pry for anything more, such as by saying, “I’ve read the disclosure statement. Is there anything else that has happened or that you’ve done that would be helpful to know?”
Another is, “Can you tell me where the water shutoff valve, sump pump, circuit box, and more are located?” Every house should have a user’s manual but few do. Ask the seller to show you the location of these important valves and switches. Hopefully, the home inspector will locate these things and point them out to the new buyer as part of educating them about their new house but not all inspectors do that, so these are important safety questions.
And finally, “Is there anything you wanted to leave behind?” Most things that are being left, such as appliances, are dealt with in the original contract but, as it gets closer to closing, sellers are often wanting to unload some other things, too. You might get lucky and wind up with something great. It might be worth at least a question – our Mortgage Advisors have seen all kinds of things happen.
While Opes Advisors, a division of Flagstar Bank, Member FDIC, uses all reasonable efforts to ensure that this information is current, accurate and complete on the date of publication, no representations or warranties are made (express or implied) as to the reliability, accuracy or completeness of such information. Opes Advisors, a division of Flagstar Bank, Member FDIC, therefore, cannot be held liable for any loss arising or indirectly from the use of, or any action taken in reliance on, any information appearing in this email.