Q: I just closed escrow on a home that was a bank-owned property. My sister was my Realtor — she doesn’t work with many buyers, but she agreed to help me and to give me her commission toward my closing costs. I didn’t have much money, but we just barely made it — I couldn’t even afford inspections. It was a very stressful transaction, as the lender really made us jump through lots of hoops that I didn’t think were normal things to have to do, and we closed escrow several weeks late.

The problem now is that we can’t use the bathroom, the tub or even the kitchen sink at my house — when they are supposed to be draining, they just overflow into the living room, so much that the carpets I just had cleaned are now all mildewed and water damaged.

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