A client e-mailed me about a condition in his mortgage commitment:
I was looking over the mortgage commitment; it states that [the lender] wants a certificate from a licensed plumber that the cesspool is in working order. Is it our responsibility to obtain that?
I responded this way:
Unfortunately, a few lenders still ask for cesspool certifications… In my personal opinion, they are usually a waste of borrowers' money (yes, it is your responsibility as a condition of your lender), as you pay upwards of $100 for someone to flush some toilets and write down that at the time of the inspection the cesspool(s) appear not to be overflowing.
I'd ask your mortgage contact if this can be waived. If it cannot be waived, you need to contact a couple of plumbers to see who'll do the fastest certification for the least money (again, in my opinion, since there's no guarantee attached, price/speed is the major reason to choose a cesspool certifier). Only upside--if a cesspool problem is detected, Sellers will have to remedy!
A few hours later, my client e-mailed again:
Just got off the phone with [the lender]... The commitment letter is a standard company document … but [representative] is not required to follow every paragraph. So, no cesspool certification is needed!
Nice avoidance of an unnecessary expense by my client. But it illustrates that borrowers’ money can be wasted by lenders without care or concern, so you should always ask if some costs or conditions may be waived.