Why A Subject-Free Offer Can Cost a Home Buyer Thousands of Dollars

Why A Subject-Free Offer Can Cost a Home Buyer Thousands of Dollars 

“Patience is necessary, and one cannot reap immediately where one has sown.” – Soren Kierkegaard  


The news seems to have a never-ending stream of stories of buyers making unconditional offers on homes that sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars over asking price.  Simply put, this is a dangerous game for buyers to play as it can end up costing them thousands of dollars after the fact.  Some sellers have decided that even full-price offers are undesirable! Lindsie Tomlinson, a realtor in Vancouver, recently wrote about a North Vancouver seller who turned down 4 offers and then contacted one of the potential buyers the next day and advised that if the buyers added an additional $100,000 to their offer (which was already well above asking price), that they would accept it.  Needless to say the buyer walked away from the property.  We are hearing more stories from Mainland agents that suggest that home sellers are not seeing the dozens of offers on a home far above asking price as they were even 6-9 months ago.  Sellers who fail to heed the changing market are beginning to see their home sit unsold on the market.


Often times, when buyers are negotiating to purchase a home, an experienced agent will encourage buyers to complete certain tests, inspections and surveys.  We encountered a situation recently that showed E.coli in the water for a home that the buyer had wanted to make a subject-free offer on, and this was able to be dealt with and resolved before completion of the sale.  It is critical to have an agent who works diligently on your behalf.  When you look at a title search, there may be items on title that should always be requested and reviewed.  The Property Disclosure Statement that is filled out and signed by the seller should be carefully reviewed as often the buyers will need to sign and date the document as it will likely form part of the contract of purchase and sale.


What else can go wrong when you buy a home or property?  Recently, there have been sales of homes within our city limits that are still on septic and not city sewer.  I have spoken with buyers whose realtor had simply assumed that the home was on sewer and then were surprised (and not in a good way either) when they learned that it was on septic – almost always after they had completed the purchase.


Could you imagine the surprise of finding hundreds of BATS in the attic of your new home?  Well, for one home owner, that was almost the case.  Thankfully, the buyer did heed the age advice of their realtor and had a building inspection done on the home that they were buying, and the building inspector was the one who was surprised when he climbed up his ladder and opened the hatch to the attic…only to be swarmed by blood-thirsty, rabies-infected killers! Ok…maybe I am just hypothesizing about the medical conditions of these vermin with wings but I must admit that an attic full of bats would cause me more than a little a little anxiety!


Another issue that can arise can take place when buying an estate sale.  It may be subject to probate and I have seen this take so long that a buyer will tire of the never-ending date extensions and then try to cancel the deal as Summer turns to Fall and then Winter before some probates are resolved.  A reputable agent will do some due diligence to find out at what stage probate is at, who is handling it and more details on the people involved.  Making an informed decision is the best decision a buyer can make – as the alternative can be a costly nightmare.

Buying a home is often the biggest investment you will make in your life.  It is worth spending the few hundred dollars to ensure that you know exactly what you are buying, where you are buying and the actual condition of the home.


Our McCullough Team is dedicated to helping our client move…in the right direction!  Let our team with over 60+ years of combined experience share our expertise with you so that whether you are selling or buying, you get a top negotiator working on your behalf who is dedicated to ensuring that those details are looked after each time.  Give us a call today at 250-751-1223 and visit www.mmshomes.com.



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