Entries from Searchlight Crusade tagged with 'prevention'

The Sperm Donor Theory of Buyer's Agents

Some fathers, sad to say, are not involved in their children's life beyond conception. Maybe it was just a one night stand and they have no idea they even have a child, maybe they were involved with the mother on...

Don't Rely On Reputation - There Are No Silver Bullets

On a regular basis, I get emails that ask me what I think of a particular company. When I check out public forums, I see questions about particular companies every time. "What do you think of X Realty, or Y...

I'm Competing Against Multiple Offers. How Do I Proceed?

The first thing to consider is that maybe you shouldn't. You never want to get involved in a bidding war. There's a classic riddle I ask every single one of my buyer clients at least once. "How often does...

The "We'll Keep You In Your Property" Scam

This is a pure scam throughout, but it's legal as far as I know. I'm not going to go into more details than I can avoid. The universe knows there's enough people pulling this right now, but the bad guys...

Student Loans and Real Estate Loans: Default, Repayment vs. Nonpayment and Consolidation

This is one of those things that trips up people to buy a house or refinance it: student loans. First off, Form 1003, the Federal Uniform Residential Loan Application has the following relevant questions on page 4, among the...

Buying Real Estate Isn't Simple

And I don't know why people expect it to be. Cancel that. I do know why. Popular media. It's not all that common in popular media, but on those occasions I see someone buying a house in the movies...

You Want an Agent That Can Pay ENOUGH Attention to YOU

A lot of advice gets given to choose a "top producing" agent. These highly corporate offices may have the name of an individual agent attached to them, but they are in fact transaction mills. They have done pretty well for...

Realtor and Loan Officer Responsibility: Can the Client Afford The Property?

Every so often, I write about professional responsibility. Every month I get a couple of magazines because I'm a Realtor. There was a letter from someone who was proud of the fact that he had never asked someone if they...

Shopping For The Best Loan In The Changed Lending Environment

It shouldn't be any surprise to anyone with the headlines of the last few years that shopping for a mortgage loan has radically changed. Indeed, a lot of the regulatory changes seem directly aimed at what were the best...

Financing Tricks and Calculating What You Can Really Afford in a Home Loan

(Note: the available loan options have shrunk since this was first written, and the rates are significantly lower right now, but the main point is calculating what you can and cannot really afford) Hi Dan, I am a first time...

Top Twelve Things That Help You Buy Property At A Bargain Price

Quite a while ago, I wrote Top Ten Reasons You Bought The Wrong House and Top Ten Reasons Your Home Isn't Selling. In that vein, I'm going to write a list of the most important things when you're shopping for...

The Difference Between a Reliable and Unreliable Prequalification or Preapproval Letter

If you don't know, chances are your agent doesn't either. Even if you know, chances are that your agent is as clueless as a newborn about loans. I and my clients get asked for all kinds of nonsense (to put...

How Easy Real Estate Scams Are

Hi, my name is DELETED, I need help. I bought a house (a few months ago) because my boyfriend persuaded me to. This was supposed to be a real estate investment between us. I put the house in my...

Truth In Lending and APR

(Note: This article is a reprint of one of the earliest articles I wrote, from a time when rates were higher. The principles, however, are quite valid - and even reinforced by the fact that rates now are much lower)...

Why It May Be Costly to Reject Paying Points

I hear it and read it all the time - advice that says to pre-emptively reject the possibility of paying points. People that talk to me about loan rates that tell me they will not consider any loan that...

Title Deeds And The Form They Should Take

On a forum I frequent, someone posted this advice for prospective property purchasers: At closing, at the title office or bank, when signing the title, contract for sale or any transfer instrument (use a single obliterating line) mark out the...

Loan Documents - Contracts of Adhesion

Got a search for "mortgage closing documents do not sign changes." Unfortunately for this person, the documents you get at closing are what legal folks call a contract of adhesion. This means you can either accept it, sign, and adhere...

Finding a Good Buyer's Agent (And Eliminating Bad Ones)

I hear people complain that they've never had a good buyer's agent, that they can't find one, or that they one they had hosed them (Sometimes, they're wrong about that, by the way). I also regularly get email from people...

Transaction Coordinator: For The Agent's Benefit, Not The Consumers

The last few years, real estate agents and brokerages have begun charging a transaction coordination fee in addition to whatever their share of the sales commission was. The purpose of this is to pay a transaction coordinator, so your...

Don't Roll Mortgage Refinance Costs Into Your Balance If You Wouldn't Pay Them Cash

One thing that is very common in the mortgage industry is masking loan costs by rolling them into your loan balance. People are less sensitive to being asked to roll this money into their loan balance than they are about...