Beemer (dr_tectonic) wrote,


We're still not closed on the house. Hopefully we can still move in this weekend despite that. I am working on it.

The Mister Cranky-Pants icon is, for once, not even remotely exaggerating my mood. It is understating it.

So what's the deal? It's a number of things, but most of it hinges on the fact that we're buying a flipped property. "Flipped" meaning corporation-owned, and being resold for a profit above some threshold value.

(Aside: As best we can tell, the place was previously owned by a realtor, who, as many of them apparently do, owned many properties and rented them out, until the job and housing markets went south and she couldn't afford them anymore. House was foreclosed on, corporation bought and upgraded it, then put it back on the market for a profit -- though still at a good price. Flippage Has Occurred.)

We're getting an FHA loan, and it turns out there are rules about buying flipped properties when it comes to FHA financing. It used to be that you just couldn't do it at all unless it had been at least 90 days since the property was originally bought. As of February 1st, though, you can, if you get an anti-flipping waiver. This involves a bunch of stuff happening at "arms length" from the buyer and the seller. In particular, you have to get a second appraisal and a second inspection that are totally independent of anyone taking part in the transaction.

So the first thing that went wrong is that the lender (which is not my credit union, but a company that my credit union -- and many others -- contracts out to for FHA loans) was initially confused about the fact that this is a flipped property. They thought it was bank-owned, which is different. So they didn't realize they needed to get a second appraisal until late in the process, and that had to be ordered from the appraisals department (which is in Dallas) and go through a third-party company in Missouri that... well, I don't know that they necessarily dicked around and were lame-asses, but let's say that they failed to expedite it. So it didn't happen until just before we were supposed to close last week.

Which is actually the second closing date, because the first one was blown two weeks ago when they got back to us with the conditions from underwriting based on the first appraisal and I spent the day patching drywall. Which I guess is mostly because the first set of deadlines were unrealistically short, and that didn't get communicated. Fine, whatever.

Anyway, the second thing that went wrong, which is the cause of today's woes, is that we needed this second, independent inspection, which happened yesterday, and that identified some problems that will cause the FHA to refuse to sign off on the loan until they're fixed. And as I asked the office manager when I called her today to complain, if the second inspection is required for the anti-flipping waiver, shouldn't that and the second appraisal have been scheduled immediately once they realized that it was corporation-owned? As in, a week ago, so that last Friday, when we were saying "hey, will Wednesday work?" we would have known that these issues were there and needed to be dealt with before we could close?

So while the first case was probably just a bunch of knock-on bureaucratic delays due to some un-/miscommunicated information, this second case is, I think, due mostly to someone failing to Get Their Shit Together. (Also, how come this guy found a bunch of things that the inspector I paid didn't? Somebody is either too lax or too stringent; either way, it sucks.)

Anyway, we should be able to work this out. We really want to buy this place. Or rather, we NEED to buy it, because not only do we NEED A HOUSE TO PUT OUR STUFF IN so we can stop living amongst towers of boxes and being driven mad by it, we have given notice to the apartment complex, the cats are here illegally, and we'll be fighting off insolvency in the period between when we close and when I get my tax return. So if we have to start house-hunting all over again, we'll be pretty much hosed on a number of fronts.

But the sellers also have a lot of incentive to help us work it out, because every day they hold on to this property is lost future profit in buying and selling the next one. So, that's good.

Currently, we're really, really hoping they'll agree to let us move in this weekend and rent the place for a week or two while we get it all sorted out. We'll work with them to get the necessary fixes done, and if there are big-ticket items (like, new furnace may be required), the sellers will pay for them and add it on to the purchase price. (We can easily pay $8 more a month over the lifetime of the mortgage, but we can't fork over an extra $4k all at once up-front.)

So argh. Very argh. A whole pile of argh. But if all goes as I hope, we can move in this weekend just like we were planning to, and then it'll just be a matter of getting some licensed contractors in to inspect a couple things and possibly (hopefully not) fix them before we finish off the paperwork to actually own the place.
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