The past two years of supply-chain disruptions, compounded by labor shortages, have forced builders to improvise, adapt and overcome. Throughout these still-challenging times, builders have come up with creative and viable solutions to properly complete homes when the critical path becomes the path less followed. Here are some examples. 

1. Window Flashing. To keep projects moving when the windows are nowhere in sight, leave the house wrap stretched over their rough openings, which will help to protect the interior until windows arrive.

2. Structural Elements. Structural sheathing can be interchanged with other more readily available options, but work with your architect or engineer to ensure compliance with the building’s requirements. It’s also important to understand how differences in vapor permeability among sheathing materials affect wall performance. Be aware of and stay close to the wall vapor profile that’s recommended for your climate.

3. House wraps. House wraps vary significantly in permeability ratings and in their ability to function as an air barrier. Do your homework, and be aware of your climate conditions.

4. Insulation. While wall cavity insulation products can be interchanged, they vary significantly in their thermal (R-value) ratings and impact on a wall’s vapor profile. Fiberglass batts and loose-fill products can be used in any climate, but damp-sprayed cellulose isn’t recommended for hot/humid areas. Closed-cell spray foam insulation can be used in any climate and also provides an excellent air barrier.

5. Tile Backers. There are two primary types of wet-area tile backer: those that are surface, and those recommended to be installed over a water-resistant barrier or made to be waterproof on the surface. There’s also a class of waterproof membrane that provide a fully waterproof membrane over a variety of backers that are adequately secured to the framing to bear the weight of the tile. The critical point is to avoid simply swapping out tile backer products without knowing what’s required to make them waterproof.

Before you try alternatives to these critical material specs, perform your due diligence on the differences in their performance, and confer with your architect, engineer and especially your trade partners.

Source: nahb.org

No one would argue that a home is likely one of – if not the – biggest purchases you will ever make in your life. And while doubts associated with such a transaction are to be expected, incidents of buyer’s remorse seem elevated in the midst of the previous year’s wildly fluctuating market. 2022 was a tale of two extremes, and each was a trigger causing people to question their home-buying decisions for vastly different reasons.

The first half of the year saw record low mortgage rates, with properties listed high and often selling above the asking price. Buyers engaged in bidding wars, had little time to vet the properties and even less time to make an educated decision. In a rapid about-face, the latter half of 2022 saw the market flip when the Federal Reserve raised interest rates. Home prices leveled out and buyers had a bit more time to pick and choose their dream home, but in the end were faced with higher monthly mortgage payments.

While each scenario has clear reasons for inducing anxiety and remorse for the buyer, one thing that is universally helpful in alleviating any unnecessary worries is the experience and insight of a realtor. An experienced professional can guide home buyers in the correct direction and help them carefully review options. Torrence L. Ford, broker/owner of Atlanta’s RE/MAX Premier, stresses that working things out with anxious buyers is crucial, so sales do not fall through due to emotional rather than logical reasons.

His advice is to sit down with buyers and carefully review their options. In today’s climate, it is advisable to renegotiate with the seller. See if they are flexible with extending the closing date, thus allowing more time for the buyer to save money or possibly pay for a rate buydown. Another avenue to explore is to ask the lender if there are any credits available.

Ford also suggests informing the buyers that there exists the possibility of two more interest rate increases in the near future, so the time of affordability is now. The key is to “marry the payment and date the rate” – meaning, if you find a home you truly love and can afford, don’t let the current interest rates prevent you from purchasing it.

While cost is certainly a frontrunner for buyer’s remorse, it is not the only cause. When homes are selling quickly, there is not a lot of time for buyers to examine everything about the home and the general neighborhood. This is where a realtor plays a key role. They can make sure a buyer understands all the costs of the home, including property taxes, mortgage payments, and living expenses. It is not uncommon for a buyer to emerge victorious in a bidding war only to realize they cannot truly afford the prize.

It's important to reiterate to clients that homes almost always appreciate in value. If the house that is purchased turns out to be something less than a “forever home,” there is very likely a profit to be made in a future sale. Also, there is the potential for it to become a rental property and thus an additional source of income.

Seasoned realtors with years of experience can draw upon that to offer their clients as much information as possible for them to not only make an informed decision, but also manage their expectations. An example would be a buyer who won a bidding war above 12 others. Reminding them of the potential reasons for their victory – more favorable financing, a better closing date, a better relationship with the other realtor – could eliminate their worry that they overbid or overpaid.

It also helps to point out that most problems have workable solutions. If you find a home you love and the roof is bad, you don’t need to automatically take that property off your list. Rather, work with the seller to negotiate financing for the repair or replacement of the roof. Once again, expectations are managed and the potential for regret (at losing out on an otherwise desirable house) or remorse (for purchasing a less-than-ideal home) has been eliminated.

Perhaps most importantly, realtors should remind buyers that they should focus on the positive – which is the fact that they will be living in and enjoying their home for years to come!

On a positive note, despite the higher interest rates, the real estate industry seems to have returned to a state in which homes are staying on the market longer, allowing buyers time to do their due diligence and make an informed – and remorse-free – decision.


If you or your clients are still looking for added assurance and peace-of-mind check out the Key Estates Extended Warranty. Appliances and systems can break down and unfortunately, you never know when that will happen. It will be inconvenient, stressful and most of all, expensive. The best way to handle these complications is to be prepared. Buyers OR sellers can purchase coverage (through their Real Estate Professional or Builder) on appliances and systems such as water heaters, dishwashers, electrical systems, plumbing, ductwork and much more.

Not only is Key Estates affordable, but repairs or breakdowns are handled a little differently than the other guys do it. Key Estates allows homeowners to choose their own repair providers. Homeowners are NOT forced to choose ‘a guy’ from an ‘authorized list’. This allows the homeowner the freedom to choose someone they can trust and someone who will actually show up, and someone who has the experience and expertise to get the job done. Plus, there are no blackout coverage areas or claims forms to fill out. Concerned about the bones of the home? Key Estates has structural coverage, too. It’s worth checking into!

Wide angle shot of a Domestic kitchen with modern appliancesKey Estates Warranty is a new affiliate of Residential Warranty Company, LLC,  HOME of Texas and MHWC is now offering extended warranties for homes involved in real estate transactions across the country. Offered exclusively through a network of approved Real Estate Professionals, the Key Estates Warranty program provides extended warranty protection on a variety of appliances, systems and even structural components in existing homes.

Homeowners understand that eventually, most things break down. Extended warranties are a cost-effective way to deal with expensive and unexpected repair bills after moving into a newly purchased home. The package approach of Key Estates provides the homebuyer with the security of more comprehensive coverage but at a substantially lower rate than if they were to buy individual extended warranties on each item of equipment. Through Key Estates, homeowners are protected against potential financial burdens for one or two-year terms on covered items. Without an extended warranty, homeowners may have to pay hundreds – or even thousands - of dollars for repairs. With Key Estates, homeowners are responsible for only a small service fee.

Key Estates personnel will conduct a remote visual inspection of the appliances and mechanical systems that are eligible for coverage. We will visually inspect photos /videos of the appliances for “trouble spots” that could indicate an imminent failure and search for recall notices. When the appliances pass the inspection, Key Estates certifies the home as warrantable and an insurance backed warranty is issued. This certification should add an additional layer of peace of mind for everyone involved in the transaction.

Major Structural Defect Coverage

With the average cost of major structural defect repairs in this country exceeding $35,000, Key Estates offers valuable protection from financial disaster should a structural defect develop in their existing home. Under Key Estates, a homebuyer may opt for major structural defect coverage – similar to the coverage provided to new home builders under our 10-year warranty plans – to be added to their plan for 1 or 2 years. No other resale warranty plan in the country offers this type of tried and true structural protection on existing homes! In addition, a structural home inspection conducted by a professional, licensed engineer, is part of the requirement to verify the structural ‘health’ of the home. This optional structural coverage is available everywhere except for Colorado and certain areas in Texas that have been designated as active soils areas.

 Flexibility & Control

In addition to the never before offered structural coverage on existing homes, setting this program apart from others is the level of flexibility built into our system. Homeowners have the freedom to choose their own repair provider when a covered appliance or system breaks down. Additionally, they can select optional coverage for many of the ‘extras’ such as swimming pools, spas, freezers, etc. to further customize their plan.


Real Estate Professionals benefit from Key Estates in a variety of ways. Exposure to customer service issues is dramatically reduced since the Key Estates’ administrator takes over complaint handling for problems with covered appliances, systems, and structural components. An administrative fee may be paid to the real estate professional for every warranty sold, generating extra revenue to make the program profitable and benefit that important bottom line. Ultimately, Key Estates provides a unique marketing tool that will set the Real Estate Professional apart from the competition.

Contact Us

For availability and more information about Key Estates or any of the other plans RWC and Affiliates have to offer, go to www.KeyEstatesWarranty.com, call 866-394-5135 ext. 2149 or email us at Sales@KeyEstatesWarranty.com.