My husband and I are currently trying to buy a house. I say ‘trying’ not because we don’t have the means – we do if the bank approves a normal house loan – but because it just doesn’t seem like you can buy a house without a babysitter in this market anymore. Let me start from the beginning with a few thoughts…
I’ve been amazed at the ‘industry’ of house buying. Even if you pick a realtor, other realtors start mailing you flyers, and leaving them on your doorstep, hoping and praying on you to become a potential buyer/seller for them instead of the realtor you’re with. Then there’s the fine print that you really should read for your financial safety, but shouldn’t read if you don’t want to go down a gulp or two of Pepto Bismol to cure the boiling bile in your stomach. Reading that there is a $5 per page charge to record your title with the title company, can we say ‘racket’? Oh, the bank can make you make repairs on a house you don’t even own yet, just to get financing. Can we say ridiculous?
Not to mention that buying a house isn’t what it used to be. In the old days, you agreed upon a price with the owner – that’s right, you got to talk to them – and signed the deed after money was exchanged. Now, don’t get me wrong, I understand the need for banks to make sure that the property they are helping you buy is legitimate – as in you’re buying from someone who actually has the right to sell it – but I really think that’s where it should stop. I mean, if you want the house to be in perfect condition, then you get an inspection, and you work with the seller to fix those things, or you do it after you buy it. The bank babysitting you and saying ‘please make sure the water heater is attached to the wall’ because apparently it’s not going to stand in the same place it has for 50 years is a bit ridiculous.
I understand how we as a nation have gotten to this point where people with good intentions and a hard working ethic are still run through the ringer because of the mistakes of others. I understand it – and I dont’ like it. I’ll be interested to see in the long term how this whole industry ends up changing.