Home & Leisure



5 Tips To Identify a Quality Home Flipper

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: We are first-time homebuyers. We are looking at a home that we like that a flipper is selling. It appears to us that the house has been updated beautifully. There is a new kitchen, bathroom and flooring, and it is freshly painted. Flippers seem to have a poor reputation, making us uneasy about buying it. Several friends have warned...Read more

The 12 Best Questions To Ask a Home Seller

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: We will soon be in the market to buy our first home. We'll start looking for homes the owner is selling without an agent. If we have no luck there, we will turn to an agent we know. If you were buying your first home today, what questions would you ask the seller?

Monty's Answer: A key component is having the seller present when ...Read more

5 Reasons To Avoid a Buyer Agent

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: We have been following the news regarding the class action lawsuits against the real estate trade association and a number of the major brokerages. We have spoken to two real estate agents we are acquainted with to hear their reactions. The responses we received were very different and left us confused about the buyer agent's role. ...Read more

Homeowner Concerned Neighborhood Sale Will Hurt Home Values

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: I have learned that a neighbor is "selling" their property for a negotiated price several hundred thousand dollars below the actual transaction price to help the new buyer to have a lower property tax base. The difference from the exact purchase price is that the seller supposedly pays the buyer several hundred thousand dollars for...Read more

Selling an Investment Property to an iBuyer

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: I live in Georgia, and we own an older investment property in New York. My husband is in a nursing home, and I need to sell the investment property to help with the cost of his care. I want to sell the property quickly. Under normal circumstances, I would have the property management company do the rehab needed to sell the property...Read more

First-Time Homebuyer Learns Water Is the Enemy

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: We purchased our home nine months ago. We were told we would need some backfill because the backyard had a slight bowl. Nothing was mentioned about water. Since then, we have had lots of water in the basement, and some concrete is crumbling. I have a scheduled waterproofing. I should have questioned it before, but it is the rainy ...Read more

HOA Installs Mismatched Shingles

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: We own a condo in the only four-unit building in our condo community. The rest are two-unit, three-unit, or stand-alone condos. This is an upscale community. We had a roof leak, and the homeowners association paid for the repair, but they put on shingles that don't match the rest of the roof. It is unsightly and makes our condo ...Read more

How Does the Realtors' Lawsuit Impact Homebuyers?

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: We are potential first-time homebuyers. While we have not begun looking at homes, conflicting reports on the impact of these lawsuits on homebuyers exist. How has the National Association of Realtors vs. Sitzer/Burnett lawsuit changed things for homebuyers?

Monty's Answer: NAR's Clear Cooperation Policy will be replaced in July. ...Read more

The Future of the Multiple Listing Services

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: Will all the changes in the real estate industry affect the multiple listing service in the future?

Monty's Answer: What will happen to the MLSs is the day's question. The answers of seasoned industry followers, such as mainstream media, real estate agents, columnists, technologists and others, vary widely. The best way to respond...Read more

How To Buy a Unit in a Nonconforming Building

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: I'm looking at a town house that is a single two-bedroom, one-bath unit among five other individual parceled properties. The town house is uniformly attached to the different units and shares a paved back parking lot. The unit's interior is well-maintained; however, the exterior looks rough. There is peeling paint, the small front ...Read more

The Best Way To Sell a Home in Mint Condition

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: We will be selling our home soon. Our house was brand-new when we bought it. It is 25 years old and in like-new condition. In the past five years, we have updated the bathrooms and the roof, and last year, we updated all the flooring, installed new cupboards and appliances and painted the entire interior and exterior trim. The ...Read more

Conflicts of Interest Are Natural With Home Sales

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: I need professional advice. I am interested in purchasing a one-bedroom, one bath house with property and some structures in the Midwest. The seller is someone my wife and I have known for several years, and we are well acquainted. The seller also has a business at his residence. The business is a small flower farming operation he ...Read more

Dealing With Unresponsive Contractors

Home & Leisure / Dear Monty /

Dear Monty: I live in a condo in Florida. In 2021, I had electric hurricane screens installed that came with a five-year warranty. The screens have never worked properly, and while the company has attempted to resolve the repair, the screens remain inoperable. They have been to my property about 10 times -- and still, inoperable. I have asked ...Read more



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