First-time homebuyers are often quite nervous about the process of selecting their home and navigating their first purchase transaction. However, when the time comes for that first-time buyer to become a first-time seller, the experience is likely to be even more unsettling.
The closing process is often the part of the sales transaction that can be most worrisome for first-time sellers because of the financial ramifications they might face if a problem arises. If you are in this position and would like to ensure that your home's closing process will be as flawless as possible, these tips are sure to help.
Ensure that your information is correct well before the closing date
The title agent working on your file will need specific information to prepare your closing documents and ensure that your closing proceeds check is handled as you prefer. Sellers can ensure this step is handled properly by taking the proactive step of contacting the title company to verify this information in the days or weeks prior to the expected closing date.
Ensure that the home is prepared for the buyer's final walk-through
Most real estate purchase contracts contain a clause that allows buyers to do a brief final inspection in the hours immediately prior to closing on the home. This brief inspection, or walk-through, assures the buyers that the seller has honored their agreement to leave the home in the condition specified by the contract.
If the buyer finds that the contract terms were not honored or they find unexpected damage to the property, they may be able to cancel or postpone the closing. Some examples of this problem include the following:
- situations in which the sellers have removed items, fixtures, or appliances that were supposed to remain with the home
- situations in which the sellers have left belongings, trash, or other items that were supposed to be removed from the home
- situations in which the buyers find that the home has been damaged or changed from the way it was when they made their purchase offer
Sellers who want to avoid potential problems stemming from the buyer's final walk-through will want to carefully review their contract and make sure that they are complying with each applicable term and condition.
Ensure that you have acceptable forms of identification with you at the closing table
The title agent who handles your closing is required by law to verify the seller's identity in order to close the transaction. In most instances, sellers are required to provide acceptable photo IDs, such as a state-issued driver's license or a passport.
First-time sellers can get additional details about the closing process and the steps they should take to prepare for it by working closely with their real estate professional throughout the listing, selling, and closing of their home. To learn more about single-family homes, talk to a real estate professional.