Buying a house online in the age of the Coronavirus
In this weird new Corona world I’ve been reading that people are shopping for and buying real estate sight unseen online. I’m not a big advocate of sight unseen but as it so happens I’ve sold several such properties. Being experienced in this area I thought I’d do a blog post describing how I’ve done this type of sale in the past.
- I send you listings or you contact me out of the blue with a home you’ve already found online.
- I will go over to the house and look it over. As you know the list agent takes pictures and writes a description putting the house in the best light and minimizing any negatives. I go and take pictures of anything I see as a negative for you the buyer. I have also in the past made short cell phone walk through videos.
- My looking at the home should not be confused with an inspection. I am not there to find structural, electrical, plumbing problems ect. You would hire a home inspector for that. I am just looking for things you cannot see online.. I can look for permits that may show the age of the roof and AC though.
- You can make an offer long distance by electronically signing a Florida purchase and sale agreement. This is pretty easy as long as you have minimal computer skills.
- Once the offer is negotiated you have a contract and can schedule an inspection. I go to all inspections so just in case there is an issue I can see it in person. The inspector will email a very detailed report to you and will be available to answer questions via cell phone. A lot of buyers who see the house in person go home and we do the inspection much like this.
- We do long distance closings here all the time. A title company will be selected by the seller. The seller pays for a title search and gives you a full warranty deed. The seller also pays for Doc Stamps (a tax ) and Realtor fees. If you are a cash buyer there are very few closing costs, inspections, survey and register the deed. HOA fees and taxes are pro rated. If you get a loan there are a lot of closing costs and they are all from with your lender. The title company will either mail or email closing documents and you will have to send them back by over night mail.
- I go to all closings. I will get the keys to your house and either hold onto them until you get here or mail them to you.