Contract to Close

Now you are listed! I have listed your home and have accepted an offer. As the Seller, your responsibilities are much easier than the buyer, however, as your Agent my job is to make sure we close!

Step #1- Now is the time to get serious if you are looking to purchase a new home. From the time we sign the contract until we close is average about 45 days. If more time is needed than this, we can discuss your options.

Step #2- The Buyer will deposit the earnest money with the Title Company listed on the contract and they will “open title” and begin obtaining the Title Commitment. They are looking for any clouds or liens on the title that may prevent us from closing. If any are found, we will see those on the issued Title Commitment and begin to get them cleared. They will need to be resolved/paid before closing.

Step #3- You will receive a check in the mail for the option fee-cash it-its yours to keep. The Buyer has a specified number of days (normally 7-10) to have their inspections completed and negotiated. Any requests have to be submitted in writing and agreed upon before the final day at 5 p.m. in time zone home is located in. If we come to an agreement on any repairs, we move forward. If we do not, the Buyer will terminate the contract and we seek a new buyer by putting the house back on the market. NOTE: The Buyer can terminate the contract for ANY reason during the option period, so we are cautious during this period. Keep receipts to any repairs made as we will need to provide those to the Buyer at close. All utilities must be on for inspections even if the home is vacant.

Option Period has passed

Step #4- The Buyer’s lender will schedule an appraiser to come out and appraise the home. The appraisal must be at least the sales price of the home. If not, there are two options: 1)either the Seller reduces the price to meet the appraised value or, 2) the Buyer makes up the difference in cash. If we appraise low and do not come to an agreement, the Buyer can terminate the contract and we relist the home. The lender will only lend on the appraised value of the home. If the Buyer has an FHA loan, the appraisal will remain with the home for six months. This is why listing your home at Market Value is crucial-we want to avoid appraisal problems.

Step #5- If a current survey is not provided, one will need to be ordered on the property to ensure the boundaries are correct. The survey will be ordered and paid for per the contract by either the Title Company or the purchaser.

Step #6- The lender is doing all the work to prepare the file to submit to underwriting and we are waiting on a “Clear To Close.” This means the Lender has all the documentation they need and we have a green light to set the closing of the home.

Step #7- A Closing Disclosure is prepared by the lender and sent to the title company then the parties in the contract. Once you receive the contract you must review and respond within three days. If there are any amounts that need to be corrected the changes go back to the lender, they reissue the form, and the three day clock starts over. It will advise you of all the fees and amounts due and received as well as the amount of proceeds you will receive from the sale of the home. You may receive a check or a wire directly to your account so funds are available immediately. IT IS IMPERATIVE YOU RESPOND PROMPTLY AND REVIEW ALL INFORMATION AND SHARE WITH YOUR REALTOR THESE DOCUMENTS TO HELP ENSURE CLOSING TAKES PLACE ON TIME.

Step #8- Closing Day! The Buyer will do or have done a walk-thru of the home to ensure all agreed upon repairs were done and the home is clean and in good condition. Make sure you have correct directions to the Title Company. Arrive on time and prepared with your driver’s license and a cancelled check if choosing a wire transfer. Closings usually take about an hour, maybe less for the Seller.

Step #9- Funding takes place once all documentation is signed and reviewed by the Lender. This can be 20 minutes or a few hours. Funding is defined completed once a Confirmation number has been issued by the lender. The Buyer is not allowed to have keys to the home until the transaction has FUNDED. Please note as the Seller you must be completely out of your home by the time we go to closing unless a lease back agreement has been made with the buyer.

Special Notes: Coordinating movers, children, pets, etc can be very challenging. Often closing dates are moved because of various reasons-mostly because of the lending aspect of the sale. We try very hard to keep dates firm, however, it is not always possible. Please keep that in mind when scheduling appointments.

If you are purchasing another home, we can attempt a “double close”. This type of closing can be tricky and will almost always causes stress so take that into consideration when making decisions.

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