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Tips to Homeowners

July 12, 1987|Armand L. Fontaine

Question: I recently put my home on the market, and now have to fill out an extensive form stating all the known defects in my home. This is difficult, as I cannot definitely state that everything is in perfect working order.

Answer: You might follow a solution that I have used over the years. Prior to putting my house on the market, I contacted a reliable contractor, listed the known problems to correct, and told him to look for other problems that I did not know about.

Usually, there were some minor items that the contractor was able to help me with. The cost seldom exceeded $300, and I was able to provide the potential homeowner with receipts for work done.

While this might not relieve you of all liability, your intentions would usually stand up in court. Many small contractors and fix-it men are more than happy to provide this service. You can call the American Building Contractors Assn. at 818/401-0071 for a list of contractors interested in this type of work.

Q: I recently applied to two different savings and loans for a home loan. One quoted a 9% interest rate with four points. The other quoted a 10% interest rate with two points. Which is the better deal?

A: If you intend to occupy the residence for more than five years, the lower loan rate with the higher points would be to your advantage. It also could be an advantage when you sell the house, because the existing loan will be at a lower rate and more attractive to a buyer who would like to assume your loan.

It would be wise to negotiate for the loans now as mortgage rates have gone up slightly, and indications are that they may continue to increase somewhat.

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