You’re selling your home. It’s been on the market for a little while, an offer has been tendered and you have come to an agreement on price and terms with the purchasers.
Once you’ve gotten to this stage of the deal, you’re done, right?
Not so fast there, Smokey!
There are still a few potential trouble spots along the way. The thing to remember about ANY real estate transaction is that there WILL BE some bumps along the way. It may be as minor as a sump pump dying on you or as major as the lender for the buyer folding up shop. What you need to keep in mind is that your goal is to close on the sale. You want to hand the keys over to the buyers.
That being said, here are some critical points for you to keep in mind as you navigate these frequently turbulent waters:
Six Tips Plymouth Home Sellers Should Remember
- Funding: It may seem like a no-brainer, but funding is almost always an issue these days. No, really. Even though a buyer has come through with a purchase agreement and a seemingly valid pre-approval, loan products disappearing, appraisals coming back too low and funding issues popping up prior to closing do happen with some frequency. If this happens, take a deep breath, keep your cool and be as patient as you can. If the buyer is committed to buying your home, give them time and space to work through whatever issues may arise relating to financing. Remember, even in the best case scenario, it will take you at least another another 30 days until a new offer gets to the same point in the process. Now more than ever, a “bird in the hand” is worth saving, so be patient!
- Keep track of Important Dates: The purchase agreement you signed for your home contains some important dates to remember. Examples: the deadline for completion of the buyer’s home inspection, the deadline for review of homeowner’s association documents, the deadline for the providing of a title commitment, the deadline for the approval of the buyer’s financing, etc. All of these dates need to be addressed appropriately if the transaction is to continue moving forward on track. If you are being represented by a real professional, they should be keeping you apprised of these key dates, but make it a habit to ask questions if you feel your agent may not be on top of these details.
- Communicate: Continuing the prior point, make sure you and your real estate agent are communicating frequently and on the same page. If you are expecting a response to a question or deadline, make sure you know how to get a hold of your agent and that your agent knows how to get a hold of you. There are no dumb questions!
- Utilities: At the appropriate time (usually the day of or the day before your closing) don’t forget to TRANSFER the utilities OUT of your name. I did not say to turn them off! Call the utilities and tell them (A) to remove your name from the account, and (B) that a new owner will be calling in to take over billing responsibility. That way the purchaser can put the utilities in their name and not incur a reconnect fee.
- Be Patient: Sounds elemental, but in this real estate market, a little patience with the process and the people involved will go a long way. Remember, if your goal is to sell your home, and you have a buyer that wants to purchase the property, expect the occasional problem, roll with the punches and allow the appropriate people to wrap up any lending, title or communications issues that may arise.
- Listen: You hired a professional real estate agent for a reason. Listen to their advice. They’ve been through the selling process a few times and therefore have developed specific expertise and a feel for how deals come together. Trust their instincts! After all, you hired them for their expertise, now, rely on it!
The list is nowhere near all-conclusive or complete. Rather, it is a series of guidelines that should be kept in mind once you have hit the nirvana that is a seller with a purchase agreement.
Looking for that nirvana? Contact me for an interview. I would be happy to share with you my marketing program, how it works, and how it can make the sale of your home as painless as possible.