Home Inspectors, Home Warranties, and Sellerr Paid Items

Here are three generalizations which might keep you from getting screwed when buying a house..
1) All home inspectors are not equal. The one your realtor suggests may be someone who facilitates sales by only flagging clearly defective items, instead of noting those AND pointing out any suspicious items. Obviously, this makes it easier for deals to go through, so the realtor is inclined to recommend the inspector again.
2) Home warranty companies are often the low end of the insurance market. You think it is difficult getting a claim settled on your car, just try a home warranty company. If you buy a home warranty, put everything in writing when you have a claim. Send your letter certified mail, reciept required and fully detail the problem. Request that they respond in writing. If they respond by phone, tell them to send you a letter instead. It is very easy for them to bluff and deny your claim over the phone. Lots of claims go away after that tactic. However, they won't pull the same bogus claim denials in writing because it leaves evidence for small claims court or the State Insurance Commissioner.
3) Seller paid items. Don't bother writing into the contract that the seller will have X, Y, and Z fixed or that the seller will have the house professionally cleaned once they vacate. Instead, as the buyer, get contractors you trust and will use in the future to give you repair (or cleaning) estimates and discount the purchase price by the sum or put that sum into escrow for use on repairs or cleaning. Letting a seller fix something or letting the seller pay a cleaning service is a great way for the seller to skimp and have a substandard repair made, or to pay their kid $25 to "clean" the house.
I've bought and sold 4 personal residences in the last 4 years and have been on one end or the other of each of these situations.
KB
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Great Info Thank You, Thank You, Thank You
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On Tue, 13 Dec 2005 18:07:11 -0500, "Kyle Boatright"

Problem is that most home inspectors know the real-estate people, even if the one you use wasn't recommended by an agent, they are probably in business because of the agent or his/her friends. Home inspectors should not be a substitute for your own inspection. If you don't know what you're looking for you likely shouldn't be buying a house. If you have a friend in the construction or home repair industry, it might be worthwhile to ask for help from them rather than paying some home inspector who likely has a contract with big loopholes in it.
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Kyle Boatright wrote:

The one my wife suggests is one she knows will tell the buyer everything that's wrong, but won't make a big deal out of little stuff. She says that some of them are drama queens that love to make a federal case out of really minor stuff like a worn-out doorstrip or a loose cabinet door.
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If John McCain gets the 2008 Republican Presidential nomination,
my vote for President will be a write-in for Jiang Zemin.
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