Frequently Asked Questions
I had trouble paying my bills and think I have bad credit, Can I still buy a home?
Several of our programs specialize in helping folks with past credit problems. Even though you may have had a bankruptcy, foreclosure, or slow pays on your credit cards or other debt in the past, we can often help. The key will be how much cash you have to put toward buying your new home, and how you have handled your bills since the cause of the problem. The more cash you have, the more we can help you. If you have very little cash and haven't been current on most of your bills for at least the past 6 months, we probably can't help. If your situation changes, you can always give us a call.
Do you only work with folks that have bad credit?
No, we work with homebuyers that have all types of credit. If you have good credit, a steady job, and some cash for your down payment and closing costs, purchasing your next home from us is a piece of cake! If you can purchase a home by obtaining new financing (which we will help you with), you also get our best price! Our goal is to help everyone get a new home. We have relationships with many different lenders that can help you with the home loan process.
Could you explain Your Revolutionary No Bank Qualifying, Seller Financing Program?
Our revolutionary No Bank Qualifying Seller Financing is available on many of the homes we have available. Please keep in mind we can be very flexible with our financing because the Seller of the property is one of our affiliates. In most cases, you need to provide a down payment and monthly payments, and of course, the more you put down the easier it will be to get you approved. We will try to work with what you have to help you buy a home. Homes offering Seller financing go quick, so you need to go by to view these homes ASAP because most of them don't last long once they come on the market.
Why do you charge a slightly higher sales price for homes when sold on Seller Financing or Lease with the Option to Buy then when purchased outright with new bank financing?
For Seller Financing, the price is slightly higher because most buyers seeking Seller Financing can't get a loan with a conventional mortgage lender, due to various reasons like poor credit, poor job history, past bankruptcy, foreclosure, unverifiable income, or many other reasons. Since it is riskier to finance someone with these types of problems, the price and monthly payments are adjusted to help cover the increased risk.
The reason the sales price is higher for a Lease with the Option to Buy is threefold. First, the price is adjusted to compensate for inflation and increased costs since the actual anticipated time of purchase is far off in the future, based upon the option to purchase agreement. Second, usually the homes are in top condition when you move in. Since there is no guarantee you will buy the house because you have the option to purchase it and are not required to purchase it. If we get it back, we'll be required to make the necessary repairs to "freshen" it up for the next Tenant/Buyer. Third, since you were unable to purchase the home immediately on a new loan with conventional mortgage financing, there is also increased risk.
What is a Lease with the Option to Buy?
A Lease with the Option to Buy is a program where you lease the house and have the Option to buy it in the future. This program works well for people that have decent credit and some cash, are not quite able to get a new loan at this time, and want to move into their new home now. The lease term usually varies between one and three years, which gives you time to fix any credit issues or save additional money as needed. For the Option part of the program, there is a beginning, non-refundable, option down payment that locks in and is applied toward the purchase price. Then, each month, there is a monthly option fee in addition to the monthly rent payment, that is also applied toward the purchase price. This is like a savings plan to help you save money toward the purchase of the home. We will sell you the house according to the agreed upon terms. Since you have the option to purchase, you are not required to purchase the home, but if you choose not to purchase it you forfeit any option money paid to date. This program is designed so you have the choice to eventually purchase the home, and not just rent it, hence the word "Option".
What does "Work for Equity" mean?
We manage a large inventory of homes and tenants are constantly moving in and out of our homes. When someone moves out, they often don't leave the home in peak "move-in" condition. These homes generally just need some TLC, like painting, cleaning or replacing the carpets, minor cosmetic repairs, general yard work, and an overall cleaning. Before we go in and make it ready for a new homebuyer or tenant, we may offer the home on our Work for Equity Program, where you can save money and build equity by doing the work yourself. We normally discount the sales price enough to cover the cost we would pay for the repairs. Since you could do these repairs yourself without hiring a contractor, you can do it cheaper than we could so you save money and build "equity", or value. It's a great way for a "handyperson" that doesn't mind doing some work to get into a home.
If the home hasn't sold in a few weeks, we will usually schedule our contractor to complete the repairs, and then the discounted sales price and this program will no longer be available.
How quickly can I be approved for a new home?
Once you've seen the outside of the house and looked in all the windows, you need to contact us for an appointment to complete an application form (You can also complete an application form on-line to speed the process). Upon the receipt of your application, we can usually pre-qualify you by the next business day.
Do you work with Realtors?
THE WESTWINDS GROUP, L.C. is a licensed real estate broker. If you are currently working with a realtor and they inform you or show you one of our properties, we will pay them a commission. You must notify us you are working with a realtor immediately upon contacting us the first time about the property. The amount of the commission is determined on a case by case basis.