Ms. Lank: What does it mean when a property shows up in the multiple listing system as a new listing with a pending offer?
I get email updates about my area from a couple of different real estate offices. The email I received today regarding a property shows today's date as the list date and a pending offer with today's date.
I thought it ...Read more
Readers are still sending in comments about the rant from a seller who resented trying to live in her professionally staged home while it was on the market. Some sellers agree, but say that staging is worth the discomfort. Some sellers disagree. And at least one reader evidently misread the letter.
Resenting 'Nasty' Answer
Ms. Lank: How...Read more
A few weeks ago, a reader wrote in with what she called a rant -- an account of the "grief" she and her husband felt after their real estate broker staged their longtime home to put it on the market. She couldn't believe buyers would rather see a house in which she and her husband were "imprisoned." Their home felt "totally strange, ...Read more
Dear Ms. Lank: My son is interested in renting out his home, as he received a job offer in another state. Three years ago, I bought your book, "The Home Buyer's Kit," to help him. Does this book have current information for landlords, or do you have another that would guide us? -- J. L.
Answer: Your note made my day! I am flattered that you ...Read more
Dear Mrs. Lank: Our Realtor listed our house two weeks ago and now she is planning to have an open house next weekend. She has asked us to leave the house and go somewhere for those three hours. She says it will work better. We're not sure, is this usual? -- F. I.
Answer: Of course you're curious to see who comes to see your home, but the agent...Read more
Ms. Lank: If you could answer me today that would be helpful. We are selling our home ourselves, and we got an offer this morning that is $8,000 less than we are asking. It's only good for 48 hours. My wife isn't sure about it. Can you discuss our options? We need advice right away. -- K. R.
Answer: First of all, we'll assume that this is a ...Read more
Ms. Lank: I recently read one of your columns in the paper. R and M.T. wrote that they inherited a property in a different state and wanted to sell it. They were being bothered with correspondences from people they thought wanted to buy the property. I think they would be amazed at how good the Realtors are there. We're from Maryland, and our ...Read more
Dear Edith: What do you think of an older person buying a house or a condo? I'll be 70 this year. I am single, and I have excellent credit. I've been looking for an apartment, and landlords seem to really jack up the prices, at lease this time of year. I pay $1,100 a month, so I think I can afford a mortgage. Thanks for your thoughts. -- M.
Ms. Lank: I have a family member who would like to buy my senior parents' home in a closed sale (without a real estate agent) to avoid commissions. What are the pros and cons of such an arrangement? I'm a little weary of not including an experienced professional. Thank you. -- W.
Answer: Both parties can take appropriate precautions, and there'...Read more
Ms. Lank: Once we have paid off our mortgage, how long should we wait to get a clear deed? -- K. F.
Answer: In a few states, you're looking for a reconveyance deed, but in most places, what you want is a certificate of satisfaction. Either way, it will prove your loan has been paid off in full (satisfied).
If the lender has put this new ...Read more
Dear Edith: I have applied for a mortgage loan to buy a house. I have been told by the loan counselor that I qualified for the loan. Should I ask for a written commitment, or do you think that an oral commitment suffices? -- G. H.
Answer: What you have is the counselor's personal opinion, based on the information you furnished when you applied ...Read more
Dear Edith: When we applied for a mortgage, the bank charged us for an appraisal. They said it was so they'd know how much it was safe to lend us. As the new owners of the house, we would like to see that appraisal. They say we can't. But we paid for it. Do we have the right to see it? -- L.R.
Answer: When you apply for a loan, you pay for an ...Read more