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Archive for November, 2015

November 25, 2015

geo2Sometimes basic due diligence can uncover things on a real estate deal that would otherwise open a can of worms and trigger a chain of actions that can become a major pain! Unfortunately, in real estate, from people who don’t accurately recount their information to out and out fraudsters, due diligence is one vital activity that is the burden of every real estate sales professionals.

Most real estate sales professionals, at the very least, when taking on a new listing will perform a property search to validate that their client is the legal homeowner. Now, some real estate sales professionals will go a step further to validate that the mortgages registered against a property match what the client disclosed at the time of engagement.

One very common thing that can come up on a new listing is an undisclosed mortgage or lien on the property being listed and depending on the amount borrowed/owed it could consume some or all of the property’s equity – in the worst circumstances, not even leaving anything left to pay commissions and closing costs.

Your due diligence may begin with a basic property search that could generate information that leads you to want to do some more digging. The next step in the evolution of due diligence in this regard would be to look at a Parcel Register*.

A Parcel Register* is going to tell you the legal owners and type of ownership, legal description, registered encumbrances – not exclusive to mortgages, these could be liens, easements and other types of registrations.

Should something solid be revealed on a Parcel Register* you can now go back to your client and question them. Perhaps there is a lien registered and they have the money to pay off the lien – but don’t have the contact information for the registrant.

The next step in the evolution of due diligence is to look at the Instrument Image associated to the registered lien in question. This will provide you with the registrant’s complete information including how to contact the registrant or their legal representative.

Next you may want to have a look at the sales history – particularly the amounts of transactions and who the buyers and sellers were.

Taking the basic measures above will ensure that you are spending your time working on good quality deals that have a high probability of closing which in the end makes you more profitable!

GeoWarehouse has the tools for both basic and more in depth due diligence. Ensure that you are covered – protect your own assets. Visit www.geowarehouse.ca today.

* An official product of the Ontario government pursuant to provincial land registration statutes.

 

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November 18, 2015

geo1Mortgage agents and brokers in Ontario heavily rely on the Equifax Credit Report to assess the credit worthiness and serviceability of an applicant. Really, if you think about this, a real estate sales professional could put together, based on the tools that they have in front of them, a veritable credit report that considers the client and the property being purchased and sold.

Let’s look at your average real estate transaction and its components – this is after the client has been landed – you are going to want to know the same things across the board about your client and property – negative attributes may prevent you from working with the client, positive ones let you know that you have a good, clean deal.

The property:

  • What is the sales history on the property – both transfer amounts but also transferees?
  • What is the legal description of the property?
  • What are the comparable sales in the area?
  • What things in the area are potential benefits or concerns?
  • If it is a condo – is the financial standing of the condo corporation good?

The customer:

  • Is your client currently the legal owner of a property?
  • Does your client have enough equity in a property being sold to finance the closing costs?
  • Does your client have enough equity in a property to finance the down payment of a subsequent purchase?
  • Does your client have multiple mortgages or liens against the property – this could be a sign that your client has financial problems?

These questions and more can be answered by performing a property search in a tool like GeoWarehouse which will enable you to validate who owns a property, its history, value, financial standing and more.

Creating your own form of credit check for your clients helps you identify potential challenges early on in the process of engaging a new client. You are the first in a series of professionals who will be called upon to work on the transaction you have originated – mortgage agents and brokers, lenders, appraisers, property inspectors, stagers, real estate lawyers, title insurance companies, property insurance companies – even the municipality.

Doing your part to vet the client not only saves you time and expense but also saves all the other professionals that will become a part of the transaction time too! This is not to mention that the due diligence measures outlined above also go a long way to cut down fraud in the mortgage industry.

GeoWarehouse can help you conduct this credit check – visit www.geowarehouse.ca today.

 

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geo2Over the course of your role representing a buyer or seller, due diligence is going to require some extra digging. There are certain things in real estate that when needed could be a real pain to get.

Some examples of this are:

  • Condo Status Certificates – which can take up to 10 days to get and involve a written request, issuance of payment and then pick-up
  • Surveys – would involve a surveyor to come out to the property
  • Instrument Images when things come up on title – liens or other registrations come up on title and the registrant’s contact information is needed in order to get it resolved

Some real estate sales professionals don’t even realize that by being a member of a real estate board your board may have set-up access to GeoWarehouse. A GeoWarehouse subscription provides access to property search and evaluation features – but also access to premium searches, images and reports that can be needed from time to time and are a pain in the butt to get. If available, through the GeoWarehouse Store you can purchase a Condo Status Certificate, survey, Instrument Image or even MPAC Property Assessment report online.

Just realizing that you are a GeoWarehouse member? Here are some vital guides that walk you through how to request various searches, images, documents and reports in the GeoWarehouse Store.

Not a GeoWarehouse customer? Visit www.geowarehouse.ca for more information about how to access this work changing tool!

 

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November 4, 2015

Social media is ever evolving and new sites are popping up all over the place all the time. Sometimes the question comes up – is it worth wasting time developing presences on the newbie sites? Time = $$, right? It’s often a best rule of thumb when these new sites emerge to wait to see how they perform – how quickly they gain members, what types of members and that there members are where you targeting.

Pinterest has proven itself to be a formidable social media site that should not be ignored. With a membership base exceeding 72 million users and a large demographic, Pinterest is used by many to view images and infographic to get ideas.

Pinterest is a great place to share useful information with your clients about selling a property, staging, landscaping, etc… while also creating boards to promote listings.

Here is ViMO’s guide – Pinterest for Real Estate.

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Don’t leave any opportunities behind – use them to your advantage.

For more, visit www.geowarehouse.ca.

 

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