Can you get repair costs/consessions in a short sale? Yes I know the contract is "as is" but I wasn't expecting to have to repair or

Asked by Tiggeresq, Orange County, CA Tue Mar 30, 2010

replace the furnace. What can I ask for if not $$

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Karen Parsons…, Agent, Laguna Beach, CA
Tue Mar 30, 2010
Hi Tiggeresq,

You can ask for anything you like. The term "as-is" is really an other words "don't ask for anything." On the other hand, short sales have no money for the seller so they are not going to put money into a losing deal when another buyer might not ask. So it's trickier. Also, with a short sale any time you alter the amount of proceeds to the short sale lenders, you need to go back and get the negotiator to approve it.

In my opinion, I do not believe the lender is going to allow their proceeds to be reduced due to a furnace...although they often do for something more dire, like say mold.

I would suggest talking with your agent, see if they have an idea for you....there might be somewhere in the deal which would give you something. Additionally, if you are using FHA financing, the appraiser might consider the furnace problem as something which comes under the health and safety issues of the home. A FHA loan requires that the home is habitable, and if there is no heat...... This might give you some leverage to get it repaired ahead of the closing since FHA will require that.

Hope this helps....good luck with the purchase,

2 votes
Connie Bramb…, Agent, Rancho Cucamonga, CA
Tue Mar 30, 2010
Hi Tiggeresq,
In a short sale you certainly have all the same rights as you have in any standard sale unless you have waived them. Talk with your agent about what the contract says; and if you are able to send a request for repairs to the seller. You can ask. The seller has the right to say no and then you can decide if you still want to buy the home. I think you should look at the price verses what the cost of repair is. Did you get the home at a significant discount? If so, would it still be worth it to you to purchase the home? If the answer is yes then maybe you want to proceed even if they refuse any repairs. The one thing I do know about short sales is if you ask for anything other than what is in your contract that has been presented to the bank, you run the risk of starting all over with your short sale. I know it does not make sense; but that is how most banks work. You may add a couple of months to your escrow if you try to change anything. If that is not a problem then go for it. Remember that the seller also runs the risk of foreclosure the longer you are in process. I do not know enough about your specific sale, but your agent does! Talk to your agent and ask them to help you with this issue.
Connie Bramble
Prudential CA Realty
0 votes
Thom Colby, Agent, Irvine, CA
Tue Mar 30, 2010

First, talk to the REALTOR representing you and hopefulyl that's not the same person representing the seller.
If you have paid for an inspection during your contingency period and it identified the furnace as being an issue you should ask for the true repair cost. If there is already a Short Sale approval issued, the likelihood of getting that credit is small. But, if you don't ask you won't get it. All they can say is "no". I hope you have not removed your contingencies.

Best of luck,

Thom Colby
Broker / REALTOR
Southern CA
0 votes
Leanne Finlay, Agent, Kirkland, WA
Tue Mar 30, 2010
On this question, you might want to ask your lender. A working furnace, or a safe furnace (heat exchanger or other issues can make furnaces unsafe) might be a lender condition for the loan and a lender disclosure issue.

That doesn't mean the seller or sellers lender will pay for the issue, but sometimes the lender of the seller will handle something like a furnace or risk losing the sale if you cannot obtain your lender financing.
0 votes
Tony, Agent, Bedford, TX
Tue Mar 30, 2010
The contract you signed is a legally binding agreement. If you want to change it I strongly suggest you get some legal advice.
0 votes
Christopher…, Agent, Methuen, MA
Tue Mar 30, 2010
I think that your best bet is to negotiate on the price based on the condition of the property. The property owner is not going to want to invest any money in the property as they will probably walk away from the deal with no cash and they are probably having financial difficulties. The bank is going to want fair market value for the property based on the condition of the property, but banks don't want to make repairs either. They are trying to recoup their losses on the non-performing mortgage.
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