Industry News

Revisiting 120-day real estate nightmare

Has the home-buying process improved?

Twenty years ago, buying a car was a gnarly multistep process: shop for the car, haggle painfully, then plead for the financing, which meant a separate loan application, arrogant loan officers, aloof and often invisible loan committees and endless waiting. All of which created anxious and angry customers. Buying a car was a nightmare. Now, the process is one step in one hour: shop online, come prepared, buy and finance together. Sixty minutes, no loan committee, centralized paperwork, get it done, get it over with and drive it away now. What exactly is under the hood of the car–and under the hood of the process–is not completely transparent. But at least you know what your monthly payment is and you know what you get for it. And most important, it is quick and seemingly cheap. Bluntly: it is simple. What about real estate? Almost 10 years ago, I put a stake in the ground about ending the 120-day home-buying nightmare. Unfortunately, the process is still hell for too m...