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“As Is” In Real Estate Listings, What’s That Really Mean?

“As Is” In Real Estate Listings, What’s That Really Mean?

The real estate listing in Maine is advertised in bold capital letters with “as is”.

Mentioned in the property listing blurb that what you see is all you get. Often like a car being sold wholesale to the public. Off the lot just as it rolled onto it.

Under it’s own power or towed, hauled in on a swinging hook or ramp truck to tilt, dump.

To take it’s place. Parked amoung the other iron horses scattered in rows around the vehicle sales paved lot.

The term in Maine real estate “as is” can create an audience anxious to buy because of the lower price than normal. But reminders about why so low has to be kept center stage, in the fore front of any, all discussions.

There is a reason.

Like the car with a bent frame, that’s been under water, has accident damage sold “as is”.

The property listing low price comes with a reason, with this certain territory of less than perfect real estate offerings.

Neglected, abused, damaged. Something is making this property listing less than stellar. Parked on Misfit Island. 

One where there are lots of properties with loose ends, labeled odd ball.

Some known and disclosed issues and others you take your chances. The Maine expression is “it’s hard telling without knowing Bub”. Sometimes you can not see what is good, bad, ugly.

Further study and consulting with the local Maine plumber about the heating system that looks like it is on it’s last legs. Or the previous owner who lost the place in a foreclosure walked out during the winter.

Hunting them down and learning the heating system ran out of oil shortly after the divorce papers were served.

And mid winter, the mother left the home, the place froze up. The heating system is toast, shot, went kaput. mooersrealtypuzzle

So “as is” means the owner is not lifting a finger to make corrections, any further updates.

They may or may not guarantee the title. Or that is all they do stand behind.

The title is good, you checked and no liens at the registry of deeds or years of deliquent real estate property taxes.

But other than that it is up to you to purchase “buyer beware”. Check it out the best you can, inspect but always assume the worse, hope for the best. Not the other way around.

To get a bank loan, the low sticker of the not so hot property fits your budget, price range for a mortgage.

But the needs a new roof, the heating system updated and a slew of other repairs is not going to fly with the mortgage underwriter on your home not so sweet home.

The bank owned or foreclosure trustee or individual still hanging by a thread is making it clear as a bell ringing. “as is” is how the property, Maine real estate conveys. So if you can not get a Derby-Photo bank loan that the paper sells on the secondary mortgage market, not their problem.

Cash, a portfolio loan where the bank is local, not selling the mortgage to investorsis needed.

And the rate is a little higher but it is okay.

Take your time fixing this, replacing that and putting the property back ship shape.

Or at least better than it was can happen slowly. As money trickles in and barter for the stuff you can not tackle is rounded up with friends in the same boat. That have stills sets different than yours if you can not afford hiring it out.

“As is” is a real estate term many forget. They like the lower price that comes with the dented, damaged property listing that has ten foot poles marks on it. But they see the potential.Then after the opening flirtation over how low cost it is wears off, reality sets in. 

Banks starting fresh making a home mortgage don’t share the buyer’s enthusiasm and steer clear of “handman specials”. The buyer, new owner may be skilled with power tools and have the patience, money to correct the isssues of a property one by one.

But they don’t want the place back in another foreclosure exercise. All torn to heck. With a three new projects started before another is finished up. Looking like a real estate battlefield.

And the buyer walks out on the DIY exercise in discouragement. Because they could not lift the property from “as is” status like bought to “good as new”. After the blood, sweat, tears and ching ching to go along with the hard work bring the property listing back to life.

I’m Maine REALTOR Andrew Mooers, ME Broker

207.532.6573  |  [email protected]   | 

MOOERS REALTY  69 North Street Houlton ME 04730


Andrew Mooers

Welcome to our Maine real estate website. I am the father of four grown children, have listed, marketed, sold properties for over forty years. Lots of changes in the real estate industry over that many decades and daily we re-invent our job. I grew up on a Maine farm that I bought from by three older brothers. My youngest son continues in the tradition on that same Maine farm. Here to help with property searches for homes, farms, land, waterfront, multi housing rentals, small mom and pop business listings.

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