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Q and A- General Real Estate Questions

Posted in Real Estate,Real Estate- Q & A,Welcome by Administrator on the September 10th, 2012

Q & A

Real Estate Simplified

Inherited homes-  Repairs or mortgage payments can make inheriting a home a problem

Q: Mother-in-law gave my husband and Siblings her home before she passed. It is paid off, and there is no mortgage in this case. It needs repairs, but none of us can afford to pay for them.  If we have bad credit between all of us- What can we do with the home? – Louann G.

A: Even with good credit, it sounds as if no one could get a typical bank mortgage loan on the house in its present condition but check into FHA lending which has relaxed guidelines and you may be in for a surprise. I wouldn’t advise trying to fix the place up if you can’t get renovation funding from an FHA 203k loan (The Borrower would have to occupy, in this case).

Your 1st choice is to put the house on the market “as is”, at a bargain price, for an all cash payment.   There are always investors looking for fixer-uppers.

2ndly, hold out for an FHA 203k Buyer (Owner-Occupant) that can roll purchase and repairs costs into one loan.

3rdly, call a few real estate agents for advice.  If you find one that is interested in partnering with you or putting you in touch with a Rehabber you may be able to cut a deal for each others contributions to the renovation of the property and subsequent Sale.  (Use an Atty. as this is a complicated transaction).

Is it Illegal not to pay rent for years?

Q: I moved into an apartment in 2010. In the summer of 2012, my landlord wrote us a letter stating that he was no longer the owner of the property and the new owner would contact us. In case we needed to call, we were given a name of a bank and a phone number, which led me to believe this was a foreclosure or simply a case of throwing in the towel.

I tried calling the bank, and they wouldn’t speak to me because my name was not attached to anything. It is now April of 2012, I am still in the house, and I haven’t paid rent in two years. I’ve maintained the property (paid the heat and hot water that I previously was not responsible for, invested in a lawn mower and regularly taken care of the lawn and garden, replaced the washing machine, paid to have the dryer fixed, paid to have some plumbing fixed, etc … ).

I am basically a homeowner without a mortgage. I can’t figure out who pays the water or who pays the taxes. I’m just kind of at a loss of what is going on right now, but I’m just riding with it. Am I doing anything illegal?

A: Possibly a legal advisement is to have been stashing away the rent in a special account until you found out who was entitled to it.  And, of course, that would have to take into account the utilities and maintenance you’ve assumed responsibility for.

You could search the public records and the tax office to determine who owns the property, or have a lawyer do it for you. I suspect, though, that in your shoes, a lot of people might continue “just riding with it.”