The following steps are what I share with my sellers so that they understand what's expected of them as we go from an accepted sale agreement to closing! If this is of any help to you, as a realtor, then you won't have to re-create the wheel! Just tweak it according to your own state's guidelines.
Steps for Sellers in a Real Estate Transaction from Acceptance to Closing
- As of mutually accepted offer date, the timeclock starts ticking. A home inspection will be ordered and completed before 10 business days. You will be notified of a home inspection by me, your listing agent, and most of the time I represent the buyer also, so I will be attending the home inspection. It’s usually best that you not be there. A 3-4 hour time period is about the most needed by the home inspector. Please have the water/power turned on and areas like an attic and crawlspace available for the home inspector to get into. You are responsible for two things as the seller: properly installed smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms, both in good working order. The rest is negotiable. The buyer has to get back with you within 10 business days to ask for any repairs, credits, etc. unless otherwise agreed upon.
- Escrow will be opened by the listing agent, most often and then the escrow company will notify you if they have need of specific information. They will contact you by e-mail if possible. You will get a preliminary closing statement after the home inspection and any negotiations made thereafter. You will also receive a Homeowner’s Association form to fill out that the title company will send you. Quite often you will be reimbursed both for HOA fees and taxes that the escrow company will pro-rate.
- An appraisal appointment will be initiated by the loan officer and could take up to 60 days to be fully completed. The appraiser contacts me to set up the appointment and how to get into the property. You don’t need to be there and it doesn’t usually take very long, unlike the home inspection. Good rule-of-thumb is to make it look as neat and clean and well-maintained as possible—it does make a difference! This will not be necessary if it is a cash offer.
- You will want to look at moving dates and coordinate your utility turn-off around that time. It would be good to let me know so that I can tell the buyer when to contact the utility companies so that they don’t pay extra to get the power back on, for example. If you have special companies that you work with, for lawncare, pest control, satellite, it would be good for me to have that information to pass onto the buyer.
- If you have a propane tank, you will need to call the propane company and get an estimate of how much is in the tank, the going rate and either calculate the value or have them do it because you will be paid (outside of escrow) by the buyer for the amount that’s being left, unless otherwise negotiated.
- Furniture is to be negotiated outside of escrow. If boats are included, for example, that will be written into an addendum if there is a loan in place. If it is cash, that can be written directly into the sales contract
- Some clients like to do a final walk-through and if it is comfortable for all parties this can take place close to closing to show them the home through your eyes…special attention items of interest, how to turn the water off, etc. I can arrange that with everyone’s schedule.
- Any paperwork to show the history/maintenance of the home is much appreciated as well as house plans, warranties, etc. Please let me know where those are.
- If you have had flooding and have any information written down, photos taken and the like, it would very important for me to have access to these. Also if you have flood insurance, you can possibly “assign” this to the new buyer, which will save them money rather than starting fresh with trying to get flood insurance (this is a great positive for the buyer). You will need to contact your insurance carrier and ask if it is assignable. If so, the process is pretty simple.
- Once we all agree after the home inspection, appraisal, etc. then we proceed to closing. Soon after that, they will send you a settlement statement that needs to be checked over thoroughly for correct numbers. The escrow company will contact you to set up the closing appointment where it is most convenient for you. Sometimes you can even sign before the buyer does.
11.By 5pm the day of closing (recording with the county, not the day you do the paperwork necessarily), is usually the time that the buyer officially takes over ownership! I will make arrangements for keys to be delivered to the buyer.
- My Resource List for Fishhawk Lake community members will be a handy site for you!
Fishhawk Lake office # and address:
9997 Beach Drive Birkenfeld OR 97016
(503) 755-2905 Amanda is your contact
Enjoy the process; stay calm,
we’re in this together as a team!
If you need me: