Just for Fun

Closing Agent License Renewal is Due Now

Check your closing agent license for your renewal date! Licenses are good for two years and must be renewed by June 30th of the second year after your license is issued. If you miss the cutoff, you will be required to retake the Closing Agent Prelicense course, pay new license fees, and once again complete the entire process through the State’s Pulseportal System.

Meanwhile, and this is totally random, don’t miss the Elvis Cockatoo on youtube. It will make your day. 🙂

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CEQuDyuQFKE

Strangest Questions Asked by Buyers

Long before home buyers decide a certain place must be theirs, it behooves them to ask a lot of questions. For example: “How’s the neighborhood?” or “How old is that water heater, anyway?” Ask away! Such queries help you pare down your options, so don’t be bashful; real estate agents have heard them all.

However, the adage “There’s no such thing as a stupid question” isn’t always true. As proof, just check out this list of the strangest questions real estate agents have ever heard about a house. Cue the “Twilight Zone” music—things are about to get very, very weird.

  1. ‘How do you keep alligators from coming up into the toilet?’

Michael Lyons, a real estate broker with Lyons Realty Group in Hollywood, FL, has certainly heard his share of concerns about alligators lurking in yards, ponds, and swimming pools. But sneaking into the house? Through a toilet? That left him stumped.

“I couldn’t answer that question seriously,” he said. “So I made up some weird solution. I told them, ‘pour vinegar down the toilet once a month, they hate it.'”

This seemed to appease the buyers, who ended up purchasing the house. No word on whether or not the vinegar trick worked.

  1. ‘Do any swingers live in the neighborhood?’

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While home buyers often have questions about the neighbors, this one was a first for Kate Julian, a real estate agent with City Chic Real Estate, in Washington, DC.

“They said they were swingers and that’s something they were looking for,” she said.

Unsure what to say, she countered with, “drive around the neighborhood and see.” After all, aren’t swingers very friendly?

 

 

  1. ‘Does the car in the driveway come with the house?’

Chike Uzoka, a real estate agent with Weichert in Newark, NJ, has heard of buyers asking whether many things “come with the house,” from chandeliers and furniture to appliances and pool equipment. But a car?

The only way he could answer such a question was with sarcasm: “If the attorney doesn’t catch it in attorney review, then yes it does!”

  1. ‘Is anyone buried in the backyard?’

Larry Prigal, a real estate agent with Re/Max in Gaithersburg, MD, had no reason to believe the house he was selling had any corpses stashed 6 feet under. “So I joked, ‘I’m not aware of anyone buried here, but you can dig it up after you’ve settled on the property.’”

Who knows? Maybe the buyers were worried about our next point…

  1. ‘Are there any ghosts in the house?’

When Chris Dossman, a real estate agent with Century 21 in Indianapolis, holds open houses at older homes, it’s not uncommon to hear creaks or creepy noises. That prompts a superstitious few to pop the ghost question.

“I usually respond jokingly at first that there are ghosts but that they’re friendly, but then immediately follow with ‘just kidding,’ because people can be really weird about those things,” Dossman said. “Cellars and basements can be especially freaky, even to me.”

Nonetheless, a haunted house is, in fact, a selling point for some home buyers. Go figure.

  1. ‘I really like this house, but I need to pray about it. Is that OK?’

Kimberly Sands, a real estate broker with Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage, in Wilmington, NC, said she gets this question (or some variation of it) a fair amount, so she wasn’t alarmed, at first.

“I thought the would-be buyer would go home and pray about it and then decide, so I said ‘sure.'” That’s when things got weird.

“All of the sudden she drops to her knees and starts flailing her arms and yelling at the top of her lungs: ‘Dear Jesus, please send me a sign, Jesus, a sign that I should buy this house!’ Meanwhile, I slowly started inching toward the door planning a hasty escape. I ended up waiting outside on the curb for her to come out for about 15 minutes. When she came out, she was cool, composed, and had her answer: no.”

  1. ‘Do you think the homeowner would give me the house without a down payment?’

Taken aback, Julie McDonough, a real estate agent with AmeriSell, in Southern California, told the buyer, “I can’t imagine they would.”

The buyer went on to explain that he’d taken a seminar on how to get the seller to deed the buyer the property without any credit or money.

“So I asked him, ‘How is that going? Has anyone deeded you a property yet?’” McDonough recalled. “He said, ‘No, but it’s a numbers game.’”

  1. ‘Can I come back at midnight to see how the moon here affects my soul?’

The question threw Pate Stevens for a loop, but then he figured there was no harm.

“Although a strange request, I drove over to the home at midnight to let him in,” said Stevens, a real estate agent with Nourmand & Associates, in Beverly Hills, CA.

The outcome? “He didn’t buy the house because the moon ‘didn’t feel right’ to him.”

  1. ‘Why is the garage unfurnished?’

Um. “Because the sellers use it for their cars, not as a living space,” replied Benny Kang, a real estate agent with Uniti Realty, in Irvine, CA, to which the buyer said, “Oh, you’re right.”

“When I heard that question, I thought, ‘This is going to be a long tour,'” Kang said.

  1. ‘Can we close all the blinds and doors and turn off the lights? I just need to see the space at its darkest.’

“I was pretty sure this was the end for me,” said a Brooklyn real estate agent who was holding an open house. “After I said OK, I stood by the front door with my hand on the doorknob.”

Fortunately, the agent, who asked not to be identified, made it out unscathed. “[The buyer] was this eccentric guy who I later found out was the CEO of a big startup.”

Daniel Bortz is a Realtor in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC, who has written for Money magazine, Entrepreneur magazine, CNNMoney, and more.

 

Just for Fun – Kids Thinking

Cute kid comments

Can You Prove the Dates Required Under TRID?

Excellent article for title companies, and especially smaller title agencies by Aaron Prenger of Spencer, Fane, Britt and Browne, called” Snail Mail: a Whale of a fail…”  pointing out the importance of title copanies and lenders proving the dates documents were sent out and received.

” With the upcoming regulatory changes going into effect on August 1st, it is more important than ever for mortgage lenders and title companies to have an electronic disclosure system…”

” Practically speaking, this means lenders and title companies that do not use electronic disclosures will not be able to begin collecting required documentation until four days after taking an application by phone or online. Likewise, such lenders will need to have their closing packages prepared at least seven days prior to closing.

Read the whole article here:  “Snail mail: a whale of a fail that will make your borrowers bail, your lenders flail, and leave you on the rail”

Schemers Record Deed Under Adverse Possession, Take Title and Lease Property

When you think you’ve seen it all, comes another interesting case, as  reported by Carlton Fields Jorden Burt 

Interlopers in chain of title recorded a stray deed under the theory of Adverse Possession.  They took possession, paid delinquent taxes, and began renting out property and keeping the rent payments. They recorded a  quit claim deed to themselves.  In the crazy scheme, the legitimate owner of property had to quiet title against the schemers.  – See the results at  Frazier v. Goszczynski, Case No. 5D14-265 (Fla. 5th DCA Oct. 10, 2014)

Courthouses Haunted by Ghosts of the Past

 

Haunted Courthouse

Title geeks will enjoy a spooktacular visit of Haunted Courthouses in ABA Journal’s Tour of Haunted Courthouses. Each Courthouse comes with photos and creepy stories of past and present events.  Happy Haunted Halloween…

The Grimes County Courthouse, site of the trial of a Barrow Gang member who reportedly damned the building to the “infernal regions,” was examined by Houston-based ghost-hunting squad E Squared back in 2008. After examining the evidence the paranormal team collected, Judge Betty Shiflett said, “I would have to agree there were some strange things you could see on the tape.”

 

How Much Real Estate Will $1M Buy?

Interesting how you can buy Fifty-five times the Sq Ft in Detroit vs. San Francisco…

This post originally appeared in Business Insider.

How much housing you can buy with a million dollars very much depends on what city you are looking to buy in.

But what about in the U.S.?

We looked at housing list price data from real-estate brokerage Movoto.com and real-estate marketplace Zillow.com. The diagram below shows the number of square feet of housing that you can buy for $1 million, based on the median price per square foot in each city:

San Francisco  1502 sq ft

New York           2358 sq ft

Chicago             6173 sq ft

Minneapolis      6536 sq ft

San Antonio    10,526 sq ft

Memphis        15,625 sq ft

Cleveland       21, 739 sq ft

Detroit           83,333 sq ft

$1 in RE

Abstractors and Title Examiners – are we Smarter than the Average Bear?

How many squares are there in the picture below?

Thanks to David Bloys, Title Guy out of Texas (posted on Source of Title) for this fun exercise.  David says that 96%  of the people who took this test failed it.  Well, as what I consider a reasonable title abstractor and examiner, I found it fun.  Didn’t take long. See if you can come up with the right answer.  If you want the number (or the answer by 1/4 1/4 of the public land survey) just contact me or feel free to post it!

How many Squares in this Pic

In a Court of Law, You Never Know What Will Be Asked

ATTORNEY: What was the first thing your husband said to you that morning?
WITNESS: He said, ‘Where am I, Cathy?’
ATTORNEY: And why did that upset you?
WITNESS: My name is Susan!
____________________________________________

ATTORNEY: What gear were you in at the moment of the impact?
WITNESS: Gucci sweats and Reeboks.
____________________________________________

ATTORNEY: This myasthenia gravis, does it affect your memory at all?
WITNESS: Yes.
ATTORNEY: And in what ways does it affect your memory?
WITNESS: I forget.
ATTORNEY: You forget? Can you give us an example of something you forgot?
___________________________________________

ATTORNEY: Do you know if your daughter has ever been involved in voodoo?
WITNESS: We both do.
ATTORNEY: Voodoo?
WITNESS: We do.
ATTORNEY: You do?
WITNESS: Yes, voodoo.
____________________________________________

ATTORNEY: Now doctor, isn’t it true that when a person dies in his sleep, he doesn’t know about it until the next morning?
WITNESS: Did you actually pass the bar exam?
____________________________________

ATTORNEY: The youngest son, the 20-year-old, how old is he?
WITNESS: He’s 20, much like your IQ.
___________________________________________

ATTORNEY: Were you present when your picture was taken?
WITNESS: Are you shitting me?
____________________________________________

ATTORNEY: She had three children, right?
WITNESS: Yes.
ATTORNEY: How many were boys?
WITNESS: None.
ATTORNEY: Were there any girls?
WITNESS: Your Honor, I think I need a different attorney. Can I get a new attorney?
_____________________________________________
ATTORNEY: How was your first marriage terminated?
WITNESS: By death.
ATTORNEY: And by whose death was it terminated?
WITNESS: Take a guess.
____________________________________________

ATTORNEY: Can you describe the individual?
WITNESS: He was about medium height and had a beard.
ATTORNEY: Was this a male or a female?
WITNESS: Unless the Circus was in town I’m going with male.
_____________________________________

ATTORNEY: Is your appearance here this morning pursuant to a deposition notice which I sent to your attorney?
WITNESS: No, this is how I dress when I go to work.
______________________________________

ATTORNEY: Doctor, how many of your autopsies have you performed on dead people?
WITNESS: All of them. The live ones put up too much of a fight.
_________________________________________

ATTORNEY: ALL your responses MUST be oral, OK? What school did you go to?
WITNESS:  Oral.
_________________________________________

ATTORNEY: Do you recall the time that you examined the body?
WITNESS: The autopsy started around 8:30 PM.
ATTORNEY: And Mr. Denton was dead at the time?
WITNESS:  If not, he was by the time I finished.
____________________________________________

ATTORNEY: Are you qualified to give a urine sample?
WITNESS: Are you qualified to ask that question?
______________________________________

And last:

ATTORNEY: Doctor, before you performed the autopsy, did you check for a pulse?
WITNESS: No.
ATTORNEY: Did you check for blood pressure?
WITNESS: No.
ATTORNEY: Did you check for breathing?
WITNESS: No.
ATTORNEY: So, then it is possible that the patient was alive when you began the autopsy?
WITNESS: No.
ATTORNEY: How can you be so sure, Doctor?
WITNESS: Because his brain was sitting on my desk in a jar.
ATTORNEY: I see, but could the patient have still been alive, nevertheless?
WITNESS: Yes, it is possible that he could have been alive and practicing law.

Info On Home Closing

Home Closing 101: An Educational Initiative of the American Land Title Association