"Finding the Uncommon Deal tells you what you must know before buying a home . . . period. I highly recommend reading this book at any stage of your real estate experience. This is the most comprehensive home–buying resource written by one of the most respected and knowledgeable real estate attorneys, investors, educators, and mentors in the country!"
Evan Farmer, host of home–makeover and real estate show While You Were Out
"This shoud become an essential guide for homebuyers. It combines a real estate lawyer′s insider expertise with easy–to–follow directions for everyday house–hunting and home–buying. For good measure, Adam Leitman Bailey sprinkles in anecdotal lessons and common sense financial advice from his personal experiences. Don′t leave home or move to a new one without this book."
Leonard Downie, former executive editor, The Washington Post
Includes an Online Guide to Laws & Practices in All 50 States
Preface: Greed, Fear, and Opportunity in the New Real Estate Environment.
Introduction: Should You Buy or Rent?
The Greatest Producer of Wealth for American Families.
The United States Government Encourages Homeownership.
The Pride of Having a Place to Call Your Own.
The Time to Buy.
The Cost of Buying and Maintaining a Home.
The Case for Renting.
Part I Finance: Do Not Go Shopping Until You Know How Much Money You Have to Spend.
1 Get Ready to Buy: Tools and Suggestions to Maximize Buying and Borrowing Power.
Make a List of Your Assets and Liabilities.
Creating a Budget and Living within Your Means.
The Down Payment and Private Mortgage Insurance.
Obtaining a Credit Report.
2 How to Get the Cheapest Loan at the Best Rate.
How Banks Make Money by Giving You a Loan.
What Is a Mortgage?
Obtaining the Loan: Learning the Bank′s Requirements.
The Mortgage Broker.
Getting the Best Loan: Fitting the Loan into Your Plans and Financial Means.
The New Good Faith Estimate: Keeping the Lender Honest.
Choosing the Most Appropriate Inexpensive Loan.
Annual Percentage Rate (APR).
Tax Deductions and the Interest Rate on Your Mortgage.
The Amount of the Loan.
Documents Required to Obtain a Loan.
The Different Types of Loans.
The Loan Process.
The Financing Process.
3 Buying a Home with Little or No Money Down and Obtaining Seller Financing.
Putting Little or No Money Down.
Part II Finding the Uncommon Deal on a Home.
4 Becoming an Expert on Finding the Dream Home.
The Real Estate Broker.
Finding a Property to Purchase: Various Choices and Forms of Shelter.
Making the Decision.
5 Conducting the Search: Finding Your Allies in the Real Estate Hunt.
Insider Trading The Legal Way.
Making Friends in Strange Places.
Location, Location, Location.
Determining Fixed Monthly and Yearly Housing Costs.
Making a Wish List.
Real Estate Brokers: The Guardians of Real Estate.
Maximizing the Success of the Search.
6 The Secret to Buying a Distressed Property.
The DNA of a Deal Finder.
Distressed Homes: The Most Common Uncommon Deals.
Finding the Uncommon Deals Using the Most Common Means.
Becoming a Proactive Deal Hunter.
7 Pre–Foreclosures and Short Sales.
Finding a Pre–Foreclosure.
The Foreclosure Filing.
Buying a Short Sale.
Learning More About the Distressed Property.
Making Contact with a Distressed Owner.
8 Foreclosures and Bank–Owned Properties.
Finding a Foreclosure Sale.
Buying a Foreclosed Property.
Attending the Foreclosure Auction.
Determining How Much Money to Bring to the Auction.
Foreclosure Pitfalls: Taking the Property As Is and Evicting the Occupants.
Losing the Property to Redemption Laws.
Financing the Purchase.
9 Hidden Land Mines to Look Out for.
Determine Whether the Home Is Legally Habitable.
Be Aware of the Number of Units Sold and Occupied in Newly Constructed Apartment Developments.
Clear All Liens and Obtain Signoffs for Extensions and Alterations before Closing on a Home.
Inspecting for and Understanding the Underground Oil Tank.
Buying a Home with Occupants or Tenants in Possession.
Purchasing a Land Lease in a Cooperative Apartment: Determine Whether You Are Buying or Renting the Land.
Property Taxes Can Change.
Different Ways to Take Title to the Home.
10 Creative Ways to Get the Seller to Accept Your Below–Market Offer.
Offer All Cash or Do Not Make the Deal Contingent on Obtaining a Loan.
Know How to Play the Negotiation Game: Making and Responding to the Counter Offer.
Get the First Call When the Price Drops: Give Sellers Your Price and Ask Them to Call You When the Asking Price Falls.
Become the Real Estate Broker s Best Friend.
Bring Your Financial Resume to Demonstrate Your Ability to Close on the Home.
The Right of First Refusal.
Buyer Flexibility: Learn the Seller s Moving Preferences.
Endear the Seller through Thoughtful Gestures and Remembering Names and Life Events.
Place an Ad or Create a Web Site or Commercial.
11 Negotiating a Great Deal on a Newly Constructed Property: What You Must Know Before Signing the Contract to Purchase.
Conduct an Extensive Inspection of the Premises Using a Qualified Inspector/Engineer.
Know the Builder′s Past Performances.
Obtain Warranties from the Builder.
The Brand Names and the Appliances and Fixtures Installed Should Be Itemized in the Contract of Sale.
The Most Common Problem When Purchasing a New Construction: The Move–In Date.
Locking In an Interest Rate.
Part III Getting Uncommon Deals on Closing Costs.
12 The Closing Map: A Guide to Finding and Buying a Home.
Making the Offer.
Hiring an Attorney.
The Acceptance of the Offer and Drafting of the Contract of Sale.
Signing the Contract of Sale and Making the Contract Deposit.
Insurance and Tax Escrow.
The Mortgage Contingency Clause and Other Contingencies.
The Closing Date.
Due Diligence for Cooperative and Condominium Purchases.
Reviewing the Building′s Financials.
Title Insurance and Lien Search.
The Board Interview.
Obtaining the Right of Possession of the Home.
13 Using the Home Inspection to Lower the Price.
Finding the Right Home Inspector.
Protecting Yourself When Signing the Contract of Sale.
14 Finding, Hiring, and Utilizing an Aggressive Attorney.
Whether to Hire an Attorney.
Finding an Attorney.
Questions for the Attorney Candidate(s).
When to Consult an Attorney.
The Functions of the Purchaser′s Attorney.
The Makings of a Good Real Estate Attorney.
15 The Walk Through: The Final Inspection.
The Walk Through as an Inspection.
The Punch List.
Let the Buyer Beware.
16 The Importance of Homeowner′s Insurance: Acquiring the Knowledge to Purchase and Maintain a Sufficient Policy for Your Home or Investment Property.
The Homeowner′s Insurance Policy.
The Function of the Homeowner′s Insurance Policy.
Ways to Reduce the Cost of Homeowner′s Insurance.
Maintaining a Homeowner s Insurance Policy.
Insurance through the Federal Government.
Homeowner′s Insurance in Cooperatives and Condominiums.
What You Should Know Before Making a Claim.
17 The Purchase of Title Insurance.
What Is Title Insurance?
Who Pays for Title Insurance?
Why an Owner′s Policy Should Always Be Purchased.
The Function of a Title Insurance Company.
The Cost of Title Insurance.
Examples of When Title Insurance Becomes Important.
Title Insurance and Purchasing a Cooperative Apartment.
18 Closing Cost Guide: Determining the Complete Cost of Selling or Purchasing a Property.
Customary Purchaser Closing Costs.
Purchaser Closing Costs Unique to Cooperatives and Condominiums.
Closing Cost Example: New York Customary Purchaser Closing Costs.
Customary Seller Closing Costs.