When The Agent for the Buyer Asks You If The House Will Pass FHA

Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty Louisville East (502) 664-7827

I am a Realtor and I list short sales for overleveraged clients, often behind on payments.

Their houses aren’t always in tip top shape.

Buyer’s agents often ask me if the house will pass an FHA inspection.

Our response is tendered as politely and professionally as possible, however our answer is a definite “We don’t know!”ripped vinyl

Then we elaborate some more. We are not FHA inspectors. We do not and cannot know all the FHA rules. The rulebook is vast and complex and only certified FHA inspectors can answer the question.  The rules change like leaves blowing in the wind.

  • We don’t know if dirty carpet is an FHA violation.
  • We don’t know if a rip in wallpaper is an FHA violation.
  • We don’t know if a torn pool liner is an FHA violation.
  • Since Louisville, KY has wild weather swings, we don't know how the weathering of the house impacts FHA inspection items.
  • The list goes on.

carpet stainSure, we would like to save the buyer and their agent a trip to the house, but there’s no way for us to know. Many of the short sales have cosmetic repair issues that the seller cannot fix. We don’t know when it crosses the line as unacceptable.

If the house fits the buyer's criteria, it would definitely be worth the trip.

Posted by



Dave Halpern, Realtor

The Dave Halpern Real Estate Group

Keller Williams Realty Louisville East

Website David.DavidHalpernRealtor.com

(502) 664-7827



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Comments (3)

Dan Edward Phillips
Dan Edward Phillips, Humboldt and Del Norte Counties, CA - Eureka, CA
Humboldt and Del Norte Counties, CA

Good afternoon Dave, the 'do not know' answer is the best one you can provide the client, great post.

Feb 20, 2011 08:23 AM
Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

This is good. 

We often get a clue about condition vis-a-vis FHA financing when the listing says conv. or cash only.

There is always the FHA 203(k).

Feb 20, 2011 08:28 AM
Dave Halpern
Keller Williams Realty Louisville East (502) 664-7827 - Louisville, KY
Louisville Short Sale Expert

I understand that FHA needs to protect its investment and needs to confirm the quality of its collateral. However, when the FHA inspector claims the walls need to be painted I just don't get it.

Feb 21, 2011 01:55 PM

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