With the recent flooding in our area, and in anticipation of the hurricane season, it is only natural to feel stress if your home (whether buying or selling) is under contract and a natural event occurs. With this in mind, we have a few tips to share with you on what to do if you're in this situation.
- Keep calm - Your safety and that of your family is and should be your number one priority.
- Assess the damage - If the property has damage due to a natural disaster, work with your agent to ensure that all parties (including the lender, if any) are aware of the issue, as well as the corrective action that will be taken to restore the property to its original condition.
- Keep tabs with the lender - Depending on the severity of the situation - and the individual lender - the bank may send a representative or appraiser to determine the severity of the damage and provide final blessing to the loan. Based on the damage, they might require to re-do the loan and submit to underwriting, which may require an extension of the contract.
- Insure the property - This is more of a preventive measure, but nonetheless extremely important. As a Seller, you want to make sure that you have the proper coverage, including flood insurance. As a Buyer, success looks like you get your insurance policy bound early in the process. This is particularly important during the heat of hurricane season, since insurance companies will typically deny coverage or new policy requests when an active storm is brewing or is named. The sooner you can take care of your insurance needs, the less likely you'll experience a delay in your closing.
- Take your time to walk - It is very important that a Buyer walks through the property before closing - and the closer to closing day, the better. If you detect a problem with the property, you have the right to request to delay the closing. As a Seller, keep all your repair invoices handy.