For Today’s Friday Finale, I will get a little “liberal” with my speaking to you about the requirements within the RPA, Residential Purchase Contract, when it comes to utilities being turned and by whom.
If you are selling a home, and if you have chosen the Paris911 Team, you will know that we are exceedingly complete. We cover the bases from a to z and give information related to the most prevalent buyers in the current real estate market.
We discuss things like potential traps and pitfalls that sellers experience from time to time and how we will best steer you clear of them.
You will also learn how our negotiation system works and how we are going to strive to get you the highest amount of return the current real estate market will bear.
However, as a real estate seller, you have to live up to your obligations. This includes having the utilities turned on and active so the buyer, that we have been able to bring(or that another realtor has brought), can give the home they are buying, a full home inspection.
It’s only fair to allow this stage of the real estate sales process. In fact, there are very few buyers that would purchase a home without being able to hire a licensed, bonded and experienced home inspector.
However, not everything is Kosher in the State of Denmark. There is a bank, that apparently has given the order to their REO agent, to instruct the “buyers or buyers agent”, to turn on all utilities for inspection, if their offer was the chosen one.
Are there buyers that would risk turning on utilities to buy a home? Absolutely.
Are there buyers agents that would risk turning on the utilities into their names in order to get paid a commission? You can bet on it.
Here are a few concerns, besides it being the Sellers Responsibility(which should be enough),
- Sabotage by the previous owner (this was a REO listing), sabotage by squatters, tenants and act of God Occurrences.
- Water pipes breaking when energized and flooding the home.
- Short in the electrical panel, outlets, GFI circuits, causing a fire when activated and burning down the home.
- Stove being left on when the Gas is Activated and KaBoom!
There are many more “scenarios” that I can run in my head. We handled REO’s for quite a while during this last Foreclosure and Bank Owned market.
I know what some people are capable of. I also know what the banks will agree too. With Citi, we turned on the utilities under the authority of the seller. That was legit and legal.
If you are a Santa Clarita real estate buyer, or a buyer elsewhere, ask your agent what the proper thing would be to do. Then bounce those scenarios off of them. Make sure you are risking nothing by activating the utilities in your name.
To me, no amount of buyer desire or commission is worth, taking on the responsibility and liability of activating the utilities in my clients or my name.