New version of Toledo Talk

    July 17, 2006

News Bulletin/Toledo City Council bombshell - This afternoon's city council meeting was regarding a proposed 'Minimum Habitability' ordinance. In that all real estate transactions of any type (except those made by banks and lenders) would be required to include a certificate of minimum habitability.

There was quite a lot of testimony and I'm downloading the video now. You can see that tomorrow at

A woman went to the podium and gave an empassioned speech. As a single mother who bought her own home (80,000.00) in what sounded like a typical slum lord scam. She described a building that had been cobbled together from two apartments with construction refuse filling the attic and the electric installed by laying it over the refuse. Bad plumbins, water coming through the roof and the walls etc....

Then she said she bought it from the Lagrange Development program.

This was maybe and hour and 40 minutes after the meeting started.

Let me know what you think.....I was shocked. After all she said she's appealed to the city, the county and the development committee there and their mission statement (linked above) says they offer:

# Home Ownership Programs
# Exterior Repair Loans
# Free Exterior Paint Program
# Emergency Home Repair

But after buying this house, this woman said she could get no help.

posted by katie82640 to politics at 5:51 P.M. EST     (57 Comments)

Comments ...

Katie - thanks for coming today. I'm sure it was an eye opener. :)

The woman you refer to was totally within her rights to vent her frustrations with an already flawed system. The administrators of said flawed system are now in favor of creating yet another system to duplicate the effort of building codes and violations.

I particularly liked the part where Tom Kroma was asked how long it would take to implement this proposed legislation and have it effective and accurate. His answer was "3 to 6 months" at which point I wanted to cackle.

Section 1726.01 of the Toledo Municipal Code already addresses the issues that this "new and improved" legislation wants to replace. So far the city of Toledo has been unable to be super effective and now they want to duplicate that? Makes NO sense to me.

The purported sore spot of all this is the land contracts entered into by Westhaven/John Ulmer. If that's the case then provide these folks with assisted legal programs and let them sue the pants off Ulmer. That's not a reason to penalize the entire homeselling and homebuying population.

BTW - the woman with the 'faulty' home from Lagrange Development was offered an 'after the meeting' personal conversation with the committee chair Mike Ashford and Commissioner of Neighborhoods Tom Kroma. Tom had his back to the audience, but when Ashford asked him to stay and talk with the woman you could see his shoulders tense up under his suit coat. It was absolutely priceless.

Wonder how it feels to have your nuts in a ringer? Just ask Tom.

posted by DoknowDocare at 06:36 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 17, 2006     #

Didn't the woman who complained have an inspection of her home?

Aren't CDCs (like Lagrange Development Corp) exempt under the law? If so, it's likely that this legislation wouldn't have solved her problem.

Does the standard purchase agreement used in Ohio contain a clause about the purchase not being effective if a home inspection reveals any defects?

posted by MaggieThurber at 06:54 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 17, 2006     #

Why exactly did she buy the house if it were so bad then? Did she not know of these problems before the transfer of the title? They seem like pretty obvious problems, and if you buy a house like that then I don't see how you can then complain and expect the city to bail you out. This appears to me to be nothing more than yet another attempt by the government to "protect" people. However, in the end it will be an additional obstacle to developers, owners, and buyers of property in the city.
posted by HeyHey at 06:56 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 17, 2006     #

Freaking typical politics. Ulmer has been sucking the blood from the poor in this city for years. Now all of the sudden we are going to change the way real estate transactions are regulated? Ofcourse his punk kids are still in business.

I have flipped some houses in the past and still help out a friend in the business who has built condos for the past fifteen years. Just a couple of weeks ago he was talking about making this a full time gig with the goal of turning over a house per month. I am talking about offering older homes that are structurally sound, and completely renovated with new hardwood floors, new kitchens, and whatever else is needed- plumbing, electrical, structural integrity is assessed etc... In other words, much nicer than much of the shabby new construction. His goal was to work 80 hours per week, doing most of the labor himself while passing on the savings from being able to buy appliances and building supplies wholesale.

Ofcourse with this kind of mindless horseshit, who knows. He may work on another city's older homes. I would not blame him.

posted by nick44 at 07:02 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 17, 2006     #

The home that this woman bought was a conversion/rehab done by Lagrange, all shiny and new. So she thought. She is even riding a 15 year 2nd mortgage that has some kind of residency clause in order to avoid a balloon payment. Now how in the heck does that work?????? Sounds kind of like a land contract type of thing......

Apparently this woman went on the premise that since the house was a total rehab that there would be no 'issues' and quite possibly had been assured of that by Lagrange. But I have no proof of that - it's just a supposition.

Maggie - to my knowledge CDCs would be exempt under the NEW ordinance, but apparently have a responsibility under the old one. Seems kind of backwards, doesn't it?

When the issues of foreclosed homes/judicial sales came up it didn't seem as though many had caught on to that part. For them to be exempt really rattled some cages.

Nick - flipping is fine, but keep up with the regs from FHA and HUD on the seasoning issues.

posted by DoknowDocare at 07:17 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 17, 2006     #

this lady's story bothers me. When I was 23 I purchased my own home (all mine, right before I was married), it was $83000 and I hired my own inspector. Now that inspector didn't squash any home purchase, but he did point out what was wrong with the house. At that point it was on me whether I wanted to buy it. And I did, because the price was right.

I don't care if it's a conversion rehab, "for sale by owner", or for sale by a realtor, you get an inspection. When $80000 of your hard earned money is on the line, it's just necessary.

When is this brilliant legislation up for vote? This is such outright money grabbing by the city. They could give a rat's arse about keeping homes within compliance. I am curious as to how many people work in this department downtown. Anyone have any numbers to throw around?

posted by gotoledogo at 07:27 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 17, 2006     #

I'm watching her testimony now as the video loads onto my pc. It starts about one hour and 25 minutes into the film. It's heartbreaking. It bothers me also.

I would have thought, also, that this would be a safe place to buy a home from...

posted by katie82640 at 07:33 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 17, 2006     #

She says, "I am here because I have nowhere else to go. I need help".
posted by katie82640 at 07:35 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 17, 2006     #

Yes Kate - she did say that she had had all the inspections done by city inspectors that had to issue certificates of occupancy after the full rehab. Apparently they thought it was ok to lay the electrical service through debris and insulation. Not much of a fire hazard there....

Biggest point - this is like receiving a notice of redundancy from the department of redundancy.

posted by DoknowDocare at 08:24 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 17, 2006     #

Why is it the Democrats running this city are so obsessed with chasing people out of the city?

When you buy a house, get an inspection. They cost like $150, and if you get a FHA loan, it counts towards your down payment. Can't afford that? THen you probably can't afford a home.

What possible good will this do for the city? It won't help investors, who could have trouble finding "fixer uppers" to flip. It won't help people buying houses as it is just one more thing they have to pay for.

posted by taliesin52 at 08:52 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 17, 2006     #

Video is up. The woman we were talking about starts speaking right about one hour and 30 minutes into it.

Go to the meetings page and scroll down to the city council area. Funny - the counter says 1347 hits today.

posted by katie82640 at 09:15 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 17, 2006     #

Two words: Caveat Emptor.

Inspections are about worthless unless you know the inspector well, and the inspector actually knows what he's doing. Case in point, go and watch a marine surveyor perform a survey on a boat, then look at the results. Compare the boat survey to a home inspection and you'll see what I'm talking about.

As for the rest of it, it's a combination of poor financial decisions, predatory lending and over priced real estate. But let's not dwell on the negatives, here. Let's enact a new set of laws, regulations and add two or three more layers of bureaucracy, and we'll all sleep better nights knowing that we did the right thing.

posted by madjack at 10:23 P.M. EST on Mon Jul 17, 2006     #

You know, she mentions having city *inspections* for purchase, perhaps she believed that a home that passed the city inspections was worthy of purchase.

I'm still watching the video now. And shaking my head.

I wonder if Rob or anyone else tied to the lending or realty business will abstain from voting on this legislation?

posted by gotoledogo at 12:30 A.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

Why is it the Democrats running this city are so obsessed with chasing people out of the city?

Quite an interesting conclusion.

posted by politics_in_mudville at 07:39 A.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

I wonder if Rob or anyone else tied to the lending or realty business will abstain from voting on this legislation?

Since this legislation is NOT limited to real estate agents/brokerages or lenders there is no reason for Rob Ludeman to abstain from a vote. This impacts those that wish to sell their homes on their own as well.

This legislation is aimed at ALL property owners. You could be a car salesman, a grocery clerk, a lawyer, a factory worker, or self employed, or a retiree. This proposal will effect ALL of us.

Even if you don't own a home at the moment, this will impact the process for those that want to buy. It will leave little room for negotiation of price based on condition of the home, therefore taking away the ability of two private parties to come to a mutual agreement on who is responsible for repairs/upgrades and price.

If a home seller has to invest additional funds into a home in order to receive this 'certificate' then the price will become more of a fixed item. The buyer that is handy, can do most repairs themselves (and are willing to) will not be able to negotiate a lower price since this won't be an option.

Under this ordinance, the only homes that will be exempt from the process are the ones that are owned by banks and sold through sheriff's sales. You know - the one that's been vacant on your block for the last 3 years. The one that's been boarded up at some point and hasn't had heat or water on. The one with the leaking roof, broken windows, flooded basement, peeling paint, cracked drywall, warped floors, etc. And that bank/lender will still want the balance owed on that mortgage - without making one single repair.

Other exemptions would be: (Taken directly from the proposed Toledo Municipal Code 1763.06 - Exemptions)

(C) When the Commissioner of Building Inspection and Code Enforcement has failed to issue in writing a Certificate of Minimum Habitability, notification of code violations, or Certificate of Exemption within ten (10) days after receipt of the inspection report from a registered inspector.

(D) For any property owned by a decedent and transferred to any family member pursuant to Revised Code Sections 2106.10 or 2113.61

(E) For any property transferred by one spouse or former spouse to another spouse or former spouse pursuant to a divorce decree, legal separation, annulment or dissolution of marriage.

(F) For any property sold by judicial sale.

(G) For any property undergoing major rehabilitation which the seller or buyer had completed work within twelve (12) months of the date of sale and for which the neccessary permits have been issued and inspection approval granted by the Commissioner of Building Inspection. A major rehabilitation is where a structural, heating, plumbing and heating permits were issued and an inspection was completed for the entire house.

(H) For property transferred between stockholders or officers of a corporation, partners of a partnership or trustees or beneficiaries of a trust between legal entities owned or operated by substantially the same persons provided there are no outstanding property maintenance code, housing code, or nuisance code violation orders related to the property to be transferred.

This whole thing is another attempt at garnering monies from the citizens of Toledo. The current Toledo Municipal Code already has sections that address housing codes, maintenance, etc. and they are so far behind in enspections, complaint resolution, and enforcement that it's pathetic. Now the city wants to create yet ANOTHER law that they will not be able to operate under, enforce, track or maintain. It's ludicrous.

posted by DoknowDocare at 09:05 A.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

The whole thing is confusing. If we already have housing codes that people are not obeying - why wouldn't the focus be to build an infrastructure to inspect based on the existing law and fine the ones who are selling the crappy properties?

Rather than create a new expense - and a new level of red tape - get to the basics. Push the inspections, hire more inspectors if need be with the fines from the violations. Maybe the Lagrange group could put some of their energy behind that kind of a thing?

It just stands to reason if the system is already not working - doing more of the same probably isn't going to make it any better.

posted by katie82640 at 09:49 A.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

Nobody was holding a gun to this lady's head forcing her to buy this house. It should be our responsibility to have the house inspected and use our good common sense when deciding whether or not to make an offer (and what that offer will be). If a house has a collapsed roof and water damage throughout then DON'T BUY THE HOUSE! Or if you do buy it make sure the price is right. Don't buy it for the same price as a house in better condition and then complain to the city when it's not as nice as you'd like. I'm sorry if this sounds rude or mean-spirited, but the lady who bought this house is the one who's at fault. It's not the city's fault, it's not the seller's fault, and it's not the people of Toledo's fault.
posted by HeyHey at 12:31 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

I feel bad for the LADY...I do...I don't like to see anyone TAKEN...with that said...IT'S NOT THE CITY OF TOLEDO'S RESPONSIBILITY!!!

City Inspectors Passed the this the reasoning behind the CITY BEING HELD RESPONSIBLE...

If that's the case...I am thinking more and more HOMEOWNERS will be showing up asking the CITY to BAIL them out of whatever DEAL they are in...

I agree with HeyHey...and...need to remind of..."Buyer Beware"...YOU buy's yours!

posted by MARIELORA at 12:42 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

That is right. And hearing her speak - if she'd gone into the attic she probably would have had an alarm bell go off.

I used a company called 'Brick Kickers' when I bought my house. They gave me a very comprehensive report. But as a first time, solo home buyer - I'm very glad I had my folks to tell me to do this. Not everyone has a good support group. Or the 450.00 to pay out (this is not rolled into the home purchase) for the report.

I still think I would have trusted that Lagrange group to give me a decent house. This really surprised me. And I'm very sure that I would have trusted the city inspectors.

But that's what they are talking about doing - more of this that lead this lady into trouble. I don't think it sounds like a good solution to have these inspections. People will rely on them, as did this woman.

The Red Cross said her house is uninhabitable and her kids are split up and staying in other places. Hard time for that family.

posted by katie82640 at 01:18 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

HeyHey and Marie - I understand what you are saying, but am thinking that two issues might be getting mixed here.

This lady bought her house THROUGH Lagrange Development, as do many. The Community Development Corporations operate primarily on grants and city funding, so part of their monies are earmarked for assisting low to moderately low income families obatin homes of their own.

This is the type of program that this woman was under when she bought a "fully rehabbed" home with all the "new" stuff at market rate. Part of the purchase agreement, in my understanding, with CDCs is that when the house has been rehabbed then it is inspected by the City (as is any new construction/remodel) and 'certified' as habitable and meeting current acceptable building codes. Then the Certificate of Occupancy is issued and VOILA - you move into a new home. No different than if you or I had a new home built by a builder, then the building inspector came in and said everything was Okie Dokie, then the city/county came in and slapped a sticker on it saying that it's ready to be occupied. It's new - why would you spend another $250 - $300 for an inspection? It was just finished. If you had a problem with the house wouldn't you call the builder? I damned sure would.

The problem with this particular case is that the partially city funded Lagrange Development has refused to help this woman who now has problems. They hold her mortgage (as I understood it), so they are responsible (since doing these projects with city funds) to lend SOME aid in clearing this up. Their refusal to respond to this woman is what has frustrated her beyond belief. And rightfully so. And this can be construed as shared responsibility for the situation since it was CITY inspectors who said it was good to go, and CITY money that helped pay for the rehab, and CITY departments that have not had the courtesy to respond to this woman.

I am not saying that taxpayers owe this woman a new home. I AM saying that the City has let this woman (and many more) fall through the cracks. All the while wanting to institute yet ANOTHER program/ordinance that would require more city employees, more benefits, more paperwork, more filing, and more headaches. This woman is just one of 100s, I'm sure. It's just that most people (in my experience) in low income housing situations feel that they don't have a voice if they are participating in any kind of housing program. They become afraid to ask questions, to challenge authority, to make a stir - all because they fear they will lose their qualification for the home that they have dreamed of to raise their children in.

The basis for CDCs to rehab older homes, or demolish the bad ones and build new housing is part of the grant requirements to help revitalize certain neighborhoods. It's entangled with city, state and federal funding and there are certain guidelines that are in place to qualify for another round of funding if they want to stay in business. It's political, it's frustrating, it's maniacal at times, but it's also a great premise. Abuse of the power is where the problems lie.

posted by DoknowDocare at 01:33 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

I hate to say it - but this sounds an awful lot like what John Ulmer was doing to people. Only without the city inspections.
posted by katie82640 at 01:39 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

-DoKnowDoCare and katie- thanks for the detailed explanation...

Ofcourse if Lagrange Developers was part of a City Grant given to low income families for property...Lagrange Developers should be answering said complaints...

..."everything was new" Inspectors auto piloted PASSED INSPECTION...

Whenever I have NEW improvements to my home...I am NOT AUTOMATICALLY PASSED...everything is thorughly checked out by City Inspectors...Furnace, Central Air, Addition to Garage, Circuit Breakers, Pool...

Something just doesn't smell good with this...and...yes, more HOMEOWNERS will be showing up at City Council Meetings...

Again...I do feel bad for the lady...her family separated...with all of would think one would INSPECT anything before signing on the line...City Grant or not...

posted by MARIELORA at 01:58 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

I hadn't thought about that Marie. When I bought my house I had the electric upgraded, an AC unit installed and new water heaters.

I had to have an inspection for every one of those items. The inspector issues a 'stop work' order on the water heaters. When the new furnace had been installed (prior to my buying the house) they had not put a 'sleeve' in the chimney to vent the water heater to. Not sure about all that but the inspector didn't like it - said it would eventually wear away the chimney and vent exhaust into my house.

The original furnace company had to come back and install this sleeve and bring it up to code before they took the stop work order off.

You guys have to watch the tape of that woman's testimony. I can't believe they ok'd the things she described at all.

Something does indeed smell very wrong. And she paid full market value for the house. IMO in the area she is in 80k is high for a house. But we'd need a realtor's opinion on that.


posted by katie82640 at 02:01 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

After dealing with city inspectors for our latest project we will never involve them again.
posted by aperson at 02:38 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

OK - $80,000 for that house (actual sale price was $84,900!) is about $40,000 more than most other properties in that area.

Auditor says that the home is worth $28,600.

How they made those numbers work is WAY beyond me. I'd have to think that it's from what the insurance industry would call 'full replacement value' which might be closer to $85,000.

In the last 6 years there are sales on Rockingham with comparable sized homes all selling in the range of $10,000 to $67,000. The $67,000 sale was a foreclosure, sold AS IS, and was on a much larger lot. At any rate it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that $84,900 was above market.

posted by DoknowDocare at 03:55 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

HeyHey and other folks like him make good points about the use of government force becoming an abuse of it. But let's look at this more closely.

From the example given, government and/or charity money was used to put a home-buyer into a clearly substandard -- hell, dangerous -- home.

Should a transaction like that be subject to a clear habitability requirement?

My feeling is that, yes, it should, even though the prospective buyer is still responsible for understanding the condition of the property she is getting. I feel the requirement exists for oversight to represent the interest of the real but disconnected sources of the money: the taxpayers and donors.

In private sales where one citizen sells a house to another, there is no such requirement since all parties are present and (we must assume) fully aware in their self-interest. In fact, I'd expect the financier party (bank) to insist on property inspection (i.e. habitability requirement) since it may ultimately have to take possession of the house in a foreclosure.

DoknowDocare said: "Part of the purchase agreement, in my understanding, with CDCs is that when the house has been rehabbed then it is inspected by the City (as is any new construction/remodel) and 'certified' as habitable and meeting current acceptable building codes."

Oh! Then you're really saying that these habitability and code certifications from the CDC are worthless. That being the case, we need to have the CDC de-licensed to operate.

posted by GuestZero at 04:08 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

Oh! Then you're really saying that these habitability and code certifications from the CDC are worthless. That being the case, we need to have the CDC de-licensed to operate.
Ouch!!! posted by GuestZero at 05:08 P.M. EDT on Tue Jul 18, 2006 #


GZ - I didn't say that the the CDCs or their programs and certifications are worthless. Please don't put words in my mouth.

What I was trying to get across is that this woman came to this meeting and appealed to the city for help since her home was partially funded by the city. It's a reasonable expectation.

Also, FYI, in the state of Ohio there is no legal requirement for a buyer to obtain a property inspection in any real estate transaction. The sales contract (approved by the Ohio Bar Assn) hold a provision for a buyer to have an inspection performed by a specific date (in keeping with the timing of the transaction) and if the buyer doesn't have one done that's up to them. They had the opportunity, the elected not to, end of story.

As for your these habitability and code certifications from the CDC are worthless, this is a misrepresentation - the inspections and certifications were done by the City of Toledo. NOT the CDC.

If you would like to see that CDC 'de-licensed' then please feel free to take on that battle.

posted by DoknowDocare at 04:42 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

She definitely said 80,000 for the house. She said it was not a land contract - a traditional mortgage which she works to pay for.

Value is more in line with 28,600? Something is definitely wrong.

I also think given the examples that the inspectors aren't evenly employing the code. It works differently in my neighborhood.

And that should not be.

posted by katie82640 at 05:14 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

Who is profiting on these fixed up homes? isn't the Lagrange CDC non profit?

Should we be writing to the mayor's office to have him investigate his inspector dept?

Why hasn't the Blade picked up this story? It's a pretty huge story IMHO. Maybe the TFP will pick it up...

posted by gotoledogo at 05:25 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

The Blade guy was out in the hallway when this lady spoke. I asked him on the way out if he had heard her. He was surprised. He didn't hear it.

That's why the Blade doesn't have it. But I got it all on video. Good idea on the TFP. I'll email them.

posted by katie82640 at 05:30 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

Great idea for the website BTW! I hadn't been to it until you posted this. I bet if you e-mailed TFP and WSPD they'd link up to it on their websites and/or give some exposure on the radio or in the paper.

posted by HeyHey at 06:20 P.M. EST on Tue Jul 18, 2006     #

I will heyhey. Alot of local sites have linked to it - I'm getting alot of visitors. I'm going to have to move up a notch in the package I bought - b/c the streaming is approaching the limit - so I think that's a good sign that so many people are listening and watching the meetings. Hundreds and hundreds.

I think I was right - people do care and do want to know what their officials are doing.

posted by katie82640 at 08:12 A.M. EST on Wed Jul 19, 2006     #

(sarcasim alert) This is great thinking by the city. When the housing market goes down and less people want to buy homes in your area... pass a law that makes it harder and more expensive to buy in that area... then complain when more people move out of town!
posted by MikeyA at 10:52 A.M. EST on Wed Jul 19, 2006     #

I received an e-mail from someone who works for the Greater Toledo Housing Coalition and who is also a proponent of the legislation.

The e-mailer said of the woman with the housing problem who spoke at the council meeting:

"Although the woman purchased her home through the Lagrange Development Corporation, the City of Toledo inspected and signed off on the property before the closing."

The e-mailer also attached a Word doc with information about the proposed legislation and why it's needed. I converted the info to Textile format, and it's on the wiki at:

Toledo Needs a Minimum Habitability Law

posted by jr at 12:45 P.M. EST on Wed Jul 19, 2006     #

I am concerned with the issues the woman testified about at council. Also the possibility that the woman bought a 28,600 house for 84,000.00 that had been inspected by the organization who is pushing new legislation.

Really concerned.

posted by katie82640 at 04:00 P.M. EST on Wed Jul 19, 2006     #

sorry, clarification. CITY inspections were arranged - the sale of the home was through the CDC.
posted by katie82640 at 04:00 P.M. EST on Wed Jul 19, 2006     #

If you read that proposed legislation you will see the same word appear over and over - FEE.

The alleged process that is described in this copy is the same process that home buyers are afforded NOW. The only addition is the FEE that you will get to pay the city to determine if you will be blessed enough to purchase the house.

It's all BS in my mind.

posted by DoknowDocare at 08:31 P.M. EST on Wed Jul 19, 2006     #

well my problem is that the woman in question HAD inspections. That she paid for.

Four times.

And sounds like she got a royal screwing. I mean almost TRIPLE market value for a house that's coming apart at the seams. How can we possibly want more of this?

Did anybody see the movie the 'Money Pit'? Tom Hanks and what's her name. The blond from Cheers. Shelly something.

posted by katie82640 at 08:39 P.M. EST on Wed Jul 19, 2006     #

Kate said: "well my problem is that the woman in question HAD inspections. That she paid for. Four times."

That was effectively my point, Kate, and thanks for clarifying. How can any inspection that notes electrical wiring run over garbage (a clear fire hazard) NOT halt a home purchase? Either the inspections were inept or the inspections don't have proper authority. Which is it?

At any rate, any transaction sanctioned by the government should mandate able inspections with proper authority to enforce fixes. If there's any tax money in there whatsoever, I demand such.

Kate said: "And sounds like she got a royal screwing. I mean almost TRIPLE market value for a house that's coming apart at the seams. How can we possibly want more of this?"

Repeat after me: The poor always pay more.

posted by GuestZero at 10:35 P.M. EST on Wed Jul 19, 2006     #

This is from the link that GZ provided: In a practice that has recently come into wide use in the industry, insurers study credit history to help judge the likelihood that a customer will file insurance claims; those with worse credit records are charged higher premiums, because, insurers say, the industry has found a correlation between poor ratings and the filing of claims.

All i can say is, it figures.

posted by tm at 07:14 A.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

Do not use the property tax valuation as the selling value of the property. They are not the same thing. The property tax valuation is generally 1/3 of the selling value.

Assuming a real estate appraisal was done on the property that would determine the value for mortgage purposes.

The buyer always determines what the value of anything is. If it is more than they want to pay - they don't buy.

posted by marykate at 09:43 A.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

-marykate-My Property was Appraised 5 years ago by a Mortgage Appraiser as I was "consolidating" the same VALUE the City Appraiser...

With that...I HOPE the 1/3 VALUE of property you are suggesting is not so...I stand to lose much more than I initially believed when I do sell... :(

-guestzero and -tm-...I have known "Credit History" is a determining factor with the cost of car insuance (which always baffled me)...but with employers too...? It seems with the crunch and with recent changes in the bankruptcy laws...alot of good, qualified, hard working people had NO choice but to file bankruptcy...

I don't understand pulling a "Credit Report" on a potential would be credit is bad...I am applying for jobs to pay my bills...but no one will hire me...and...well...yeah...I would love to carry car insurance...but I have "Bad Credit History" one will employ me...


posted by MARIELORA at 10:27 A.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

I don't understand pulling a "Credit Report" on a potential would be credit is bad...I am applying for jobs to pay my bills...but no one will hire me...and...well...yeah...I would love to carry car insurance...but I have "Bad Credit History" one will employ me...

Marie, i know its nuts but its also true. Our illustrius Owens Corning is one of those companies that do that!

posted by tm at 10:30 A.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

-tm-That is WRONG!

Like Owens Corning NEVER went through a CRUNCH...

posted by MARIELORA at 10:43 A.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

Marie, DEFINATLY wrong, becase on top of that, i was already there for a year as a temp!
posted by tm at 11:03 A.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

WAS and that is a SHOUT!

I don't see how that is JUSTIFIED...

As much as UNIONS don't want it...with that I am UNION...yet do try to think out of the box...We NEED in OHIO to become a "Right to Work State" this will entitle employees to RIGHTS they so deserve...

It's just NOT right IF in OHIO one is NOT unionized an employer can discard them so easily...

I am sorry this happened to is WRONG another SHOUT!

posted by MARIELORA at 11:22 A.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

Marie, THANK YOU! That is why i support ALL unions, even the ones that aren't so great!
posted by tm at 11:35 A.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

mary kate said: property tax valuation is generally 1/3 of the selling value.

This is not totally correct. Fair market value is typically 1/3 HIGHER than the auditor's figures. BUT - and I caution - if your home is in a less desirable area it doesn't matter WHAT the auditor says.

The auditor might call it $80,000 - and with the formula applied, that would lend itself to a market price in the area of $100,000 - give or take. If that home is in an area that is blighted, crime ridden, etc. you will be darned lucky to see $60,000 - $70,000 out of it.

Until WE (yep! WE) make up our minds to support and enhance our city this trend will remain.

OK - GZ - go ahead and blast me for being an optimist. I'm ready for it.

posted by DoknowDocare at 11:59 A.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

That's misinformation. The Assessed value of a property is 35% of the Auditor's estimate of Market Value. The Auditor's estimate of Market Value is just that, an estimate of Market Value. Not some percentage of Market Value.

posted by steiner at 12:17 P.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     # throw more confusion into the mix - I had a house appraisal. Part of that process was taking the 100% value figure used to access taxes and using a multiplier to get 135% of that value.

That was the number that my loan value was set with. Using that number a traditional loan with market interest rate is available at 90% of the value. PMI is accessed until the mortgage has been paid down 80% of that number.

From the buyer's perspective.

posted by katie82640 at 01:14 P.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

If thats what they did, thats not an appraisal. Thats some cooked up concept that the county's appraised value is less than the actual market value. That is the type of lending policy that leads to bad loans and the failure of lending institutions.

posted by steiner at 01:49 P.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

-steiner-exactly...5 years ago my home was appraised as I made comment by a Mortgage Co., as I was consolidating bills...

City Appraisal and Mortgage Co., Appraisal was equalled...

NOW...City Appraisal is HIGHER than...I believe I could get an APPRAISAL from a Mortgage Co., unless...

I go with a deal as -katie- and so many others...borrowing 125-135 percent value...

I wish I was RENTING!

posted by MARIELORA at 02:14 P.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

well, it was Sky Bank - they're doing pretty well in the mortgage industry.

I thought the whole thing was strange.

posted by katie82640 at 02:23 P.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

I'd forgotten. The two men who showed up to inspect had suits on and didn't do much but walk around the outside and the inside. Compared to my Brick Kicker guy (who spent the entire day here and climbed all over, including on the roof) I didn't think it was much of an inspection. Maybe to make sure there was a house here and that was about it.
posted by katie82640 at 02:25 P.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

-katie-soome banking institutions when one is applying for an equity line of credit...simply drive by the home!


posted by MARIELORA at 02:29 P.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

steiner - I believe I used the term 'typically' in the equation. It is not a hard and fast rule.

The Auditor's office uses 35% and 100% values. Your taxes, I'm told, are based on the 35% value. The Auditors 100% value is, in my experience, about 30% lower than most actual market values.

As for the PMI issue. This is a credit driven item. I know of mortgages that are 100% financing that do not require PMI. Two reasons - price of the property is well below market and credit scores indicate that the risk of foreclosure is less. Thus - not as crucial to insure the equity for the lender.

And to make the differentiation - Appraisers simply view the property, the integrity of the building and the amenities. Also they consider any improvements made and ones that should be made. That's all they look at. Their job is to make a decision as to whether the mortgage applied for is in line with the characteristics of the property. Inspectors are charged with a detailed inspection of the mechanical aspects, the functionality of the amenities, the life expectancy of the roof, windows, floors, other structural items. A good inspector should be able to tell you if you need a pest inspection, a radon test, or if you should be prepared to make repairs in the near future. Inspections are not ordered by lenders. Appraisals are.

Marie - the drive by appraisal is done if the person applying for the loan holds a high enough credit score to be a low risk. We had one done on our first house - that was with Sky Bank. Not all banks/lenders allow this.

posted by DoknowDocare at 04:15 P.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

I'm starting to wonder if "implementing mandatory drug testing on our elected officials" would help weed out some of these stupid ideas.
posted by BrianInFlorida at 05:43 P.M. EST on Thu Jul 20, 2006     #

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