Jim Valentine: How do I buy a house today?
Our society as a whole has seen an amazing number of changes in recent weeks that have had a direct impact on our lifestyles. Our social constrictions aren’t as drastic as other states and cities, but we have some that are in place that restrict our mobility and interaction. Regardless, the real estate industry continues to serve.
If you are a cash buyer you will be happy to know that your banker is still working. You may get delayed a bit with your wire transfers, but you can still contract and buy real estate. If getting a loan, you will involve many more people in the process, i.e.- loan officer, appraiser, inspectors, underwriter, loan processor, etc. The interaction you will have with them will be about the same as pre-virus, you won’t meet them.
Lenders are doing a lot of work from home these days, but their output has not been compromised for whether they are in the office, or at home, a computer terminal is a computer terminal. When you sign your closing papers you will find that you are asked not to bring your loan officer, Realtor, children, or anybody that isn’t signing the documents. The important thing to remember and realize is that you can still get a loan processed.
Be aware, however, that if you are furloughed, laid off, or not working regardless of what they call it in your case, you won’t get a loan. If you have a chance of being out of work before the loan is processed understand that the lender will call your employer for an update the day before closing to confirm your employment. If you aren’t working your loan will stop right there. Be as clear about your future as you can be before starting the process.
Assuming you are OK with your means of financing, the next detail is seeing the home. Showing today is actually easy because the sellers are leaving the lights on, the pantry and other doors open, and making it very easy for you to view without touching door handles, light switches, etc. If you are unable to travel, then video showings are now heavily in play. There are even new systems being developed for agents to link their showing video to the showing software so agents can show a home online. You might miss a few nuances of the home that you would notice if you were there in person, especially if they don’t use a super wide angle lens when making their video, but you will get a good idea whether or not the home will work for you.
If you like what you see on a video you can make an offer. If you are able to contract then you can tighten things up later, i.e.- offers can be made subject to you viewing the home, conditioned on inspections, etc. In other words, you can build in some safeguards for your financial safety and minimize your universal exposure for your health safety. Occupancy may be a factor in some instances. For example, if the home you want has a tenant and they can’t/won’t move in a timely manner there isn’t much you can do with the virus constraints presently in place. If they are older you may have a 60 day notice situation and there is question if you can initiate that in today’s environment. Vacant homes might afford you a buying opportunity.
My advice: Circumstances are interesting these days, but the real estate industry is forging ahead and so can you. Coordinate your situation with your agent and make a plan of action. With that in place you can work your plan and not lose much buying/selling time to this scourge of our lifetime. Don’t fear the worst, rather anticipate the best for you and yours and good things will come to you.
Be safe in your endeavors, and understand that the situation in Northern Nevada is such that we aren’t paralyzed by this unseen enemy. You can continue with you life albeit with caution. Respect others when you view property and sign paperwork by abiding by the systems that have been implemented. Someday you will laugh at this time of your life – these are the good ole days!
When it comes to choosing professionals to assist you with your real estate needs… Experience is Priceless! Jim Valentine, RE/MAX Realty Affiliates, 775-781-3704. email@example.com