Agent

Land contract real estate sale not always a sweet deal

Too much depends on ability to pay loan, deliver title

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DEAR BOB: Please explain the pros and cons of a land contract home sale. --Dan McF. DEAR DAN: I do not recommend land contracts, also known as contracts for deed, installment-sales contracts, agreements for sale, and a zillion other names. Purchase Bob Bruss reports online. The basic land contract concept is the seller retains title and the buyer makes monthly payments to the seller. If there is an existing mortgage, the seller uses part of the buyer's payments to pay the mortgage payments. As a buyer, after you faithfully make all your monthly payments to the seller on time, you could find the seller is unable to deliver marketable title. Or, maybe the seller failed to keep up payments on the underlying mortgage(s) and the lender foreclosed, wiping out your land contract purchase. Or, if the buyer defaults, in many states a court action is required for the seller to get the defaulting buyer out of the property. However, when a land contract seller defaults and is unable to deliver m...