When a Cleveland OH Home Purchase Goes Bad

Real Estate Agent with eXp Realty 442805 Ohio

Let’s face it, buying a Cleveland OH home is extremely stressful, after all, it’s likely the most expensive or one of the most expensive purchases you’ll make. Yet, 44% of homeowners regret the homes they bought or something about it. Buying a home is not like buying a pair of shoes that you can take back or give them away to someone who has the same size as you. In fact, trying to sell a home within a couple of years of purchase, without having enough equity, could mean you’re bringing big money to the closing table. So, with this crazy statistic in mind, we do everything we can to ensure your happiness with your purchase. 

Often, we real estate agents, do a disservice to the public by making the process look seamless and easy when in reality it is often filled with issues to overcome. So, I’m taking this opportunity to share a difficult issue that my clients have had to deal with.

Meet Jimmy and Sarah…

Jimmy and Sarah found a home they fell in love with, made an offer to purchase, had their offer accepted, and thus began the process of buying the house for sale in Cleveland Ohio. They did their due diligence with inspections, which turned up some issues that they had further investigated. One of the major issues that were discovered during the inspection was a high water reading on a basement wall. We had a basement contractor come out to further investigate the issue. The contractor took into consideration the homeowners insistence that they never had water in the basement, the condition of the walls, and weather conditions, and felt Jimmy and Sarah will most likely need to address waterproofing down the road, but not immediately. They decided, since it was not an immediate need, they were willing to deal with it later, if the seller would make other repairs that required immediate attention.


After days of negotiating, we came to an agreement on repairs the seller would make prior to closing. 

About a week before the house transfer, we received notice from the seller’s agent that all repairs have been made and the duplex for sale in Ohio was ready to complete our final walk through. We scheduled the final walkthrough on the day before Jimmy and Sarah were signing their closing papers. Luckily for them, it had rained very heavy over the days prior to the walkthrough. During the walkthrough, we discovered replacement of a second story balcony railing was poorly completed and presented a continued safety hazard - the kind where if someone leaned on the railing, they could be tumbling to serious injury or worse - not acceptable. And, we observed another major issue of water in the basement. When we entered a section of the basement, parts of the nature stone flooring looked like it was glistening. I touched it and it felt moist. I asked Jimmy to touch it and he thought so too. So, I got a paper towel from the car, we put the towel down on the floor, and sure enough, the towel absorbed water. 

I called the contractor who came out to investigate the basement, he said that because this type of flooring is porous it soaks up water, and the water was probably finding it’s way to the sump pump, which explained why there wasn't standing water and why parts of the flooring were shiny and others looked dry. But, he said if the paper towel is soaking up water, then water is coming in and the basement needs immediate attention.

When I called the listing agent, his seller’s response was that they were at the house for sale in Cleveland Ohio 44135 mid-afternoon and had mopped the floor, and they thought it was from that.  - Really? Perhaps, more like they were mopping up the water.

Naturally, Jimmy and Sarah were upset and very disappointed. They felt the sellers had not been forthright, coupled with the unsatisfactory repairs, they decided to initiate a mutual release and move on. Unfortunately, the sellers were not cooperative and threatened legal action. We contacted Jimmy and Sarah's loan officer and explained the change in property condition due to water in the basement. We were able to send the loan officer the video and pictures we took. The mortgage company's underwriting department declared that there was a significant change in property condition, thus they declined the loan and provided us with the appropriate letter of denial. This letter was the key to getting the mutual release signed.



A big relief for Jimmy and Sarah!

Jimmy and Sarah, like many home buyers, understand there are no perfect homes in the Cleveland real estate market and most of them need something, but they want to buy a home, not the home's fatal flaws. While it is sad and they’ve spent time and money on inspections, appraisals, and loan application, in the long run, it’s much better for them to find this out before the house was officially theirs and this huge financial expense would be on them.

It is important, especially with the low inventory of Cleveland OH homes for sale by owner, that a home buyer does not feel pressured or cornered to accept something they would later regret or put them in a financial crisis.

Looking for a great Cleveland Area Realtor® who'll truly care about you?  Call Christine Pappas, at 216-956-7635  because I don't want you to be a part of the 44% of home buyers who regretted the Cleveland OH homes for sale they bought.

*Should you have legal questions regarding a contract, consult an attorney.


In case you can not view this video here, please click the link below to view When a Cleveland OH Home Purchase Goes Bad on my YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Lpukp56n1Y&feature=youtu.be

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