Des Moines to address bringing homes up to code as part of contract sales

With the fast-paced housing market gearing up for the summer months, Des Moines is looking at making homeowners bring a house up to code before it is sold on contract. Our own Pam Carmichael was contact by the Des Moines Register for comment:


Forfeited contracts is why Pam Carmichael, director of HOME Inc., supports the city's new rules for contract sales. The organization was established in 1967 to assist low-income buyers find quality, affordable housing.

“Not all contract sales are bad, but it is an area where people simply are not aware of their rights,” Carmichael said.

She said HOME Inc. regularly sees houses sold on contract because they can't pass a housing code inspection. The nonprofit gets about 100 calls per year from contract buyers who can’t pay for emergency repairs, she said. 

"They think (the defects) are something that the owner will take care of, and they’re surprised when they don’t,” she said.   

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