Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Selling My Home in the New Government Era

About a month and a half ago my wife and I listed our home with a real estate agent. We have been renting for the last few years as we waited for the market to improve. In the mean time we had renters in our home to assist us pay the mortgage. We signed the papers with our realtor on a Friday morning. Friday afternoon she placed the sign in our yard. The house was shown Saturday morning, and that afternoon we had an offer in front of us. Wow, we were happy. While it wasn't quite full asking price, it was close.

{cue the "Imperial March" music}

Enter the government. The buyer of our home is doing so through a government guaranteed loan, so of course there will be an inspection to ensure the house meets minimum requirements. The inspector asked that we:

Replace a few shingles - No problem. I have extras.
Repair flashing around Chimney - Not a big deal.
Update outlets - Sigh. Okay.
Repair cracked window in basement. Fine.

Enter bank appraiser who asks for a vapor barrier under the addition. (This is a 10'x8' room. - Why do they care. It was fine when we bought it 5 years ago.

Enter City inspector who demands we:

Replace all smoke detectors. - Why? They still work! The city just wants new ones.
Replace 60amp electrical box with 120amp. - At this point I'm pulling my hair out. The city is requiring more than even the federal government. Oh by the way, if you don't make all repairs they will not allow the transfer of the deed. UNDER WHAT AUTHORITY?

Of course you have to use their "approved" electricians. (There are only two.) You can't do the work on your own. How can this be constitutional?

It is no wonder the housing market is hurting. The government forces so many regulations that it eats up all your equity, if you are lucky enough to have some.


Anonymous said...

And if I understand this correctly (and depending on when it takes effect), there will be a new federal tax on the sale of your home to help pay for Obamacare. :)

Make sure you ask about that.

Good post!

Mookie said...

Wow, that's crazy. So if you make all the necessary changes, I assume you'll come out of it with about $.1.40 in your pocket and still have the mortgage to pay?

Lois Evensen said...

It's excellent you have told your story; I just hope it does some good that you did. I'm glad I stumbled upon your blog to read it.


Anonymous said...

I understand your point, but I think a lot of this is driven by the fear of bad loans after lack of government oversight led to so much fraud and abuse of the system in the past. I was talking about this same kind of thing the other day with neighbors who are builders and recently sold a house. The appraiser had them make all sorts of changes, and verified they were done before the paper work could be finished. Four years ago, they just had to promise to make changes (which they of course would do) and demands were minimal. I think banks are having to jump through larger hoops to get credit, even when it's not government programs. As with all such regulations it's unfortunately punishing everyone thanks to the misdeeds of a few (though back in 2006 it was, to be sure, quite a few...)

Anonymous said...

Scott, you said that you understood Jay's point, but then you undercut your statement with every further statement. Sellers should not have to go through the things that he reported.