Selling your Home
Closing the Sale
Now the buyer is busy with financing and preparations, and until the sale closes
you are responsible for keeping your proerty in the same condition it was when
they saw it last. The contract will clearly specifcy deadlines and the closing
date. Be sure that the buyer meets all deadlines that you set.
Be ready to deal with any problems that may crop up:
Problem: Unsatisfactory home inspection
Solution: If there is a major fix, you can negotiate splitting
the repair with the buyer or just give them a credit at closing to cover it.
If it is minor, or the market is active, your sale might go through without
any need for concessions on your part.
Preventive measure: Make sure that your sales contract is specific
in its inspection contingency and doesn't allow for the entire transaction to
be renegotiated on the basis of the inspection.
Problem: Low appraisal
Solution: Your deal could fall through if the buyer's appraisal
comes in lower than the agreed-upon sales price and the lender refuses to issue
a mortgage. Ask for another appraisal if you think the buyer's appraisal was
wrong, or renegotiate your price. Another option is to offer seller financing
for the dollar difference.
Preventive measure: Give the appraiser the most recent comparable
sales from your neighborhood, and make sure your home is in top condition.
Problem: Cloud on the title
Solution: Title problems can take several forms, including
unsatisfied liens against your property, delinquent taxes, and encroachments
on the property line. In order to clear the title, you will have to pay any
liens or delinquent taxes. Title companies are used to dealing with encroachment
issues, which may be resolved with some kind of insurance policy.
Preventive measure: Check your title before you sell and make
sure it is clear.
Problem: Buyer's remorse
Solution: Occasionally, an uncertain buyer will decide to pull
out of the deal regardless of the consequences. Try to work with the buyer's
agent to determine the problem. You may be able to suggest a solution that reassures
the buyer and rescues the deal. (If not, you may be able to keep the buyer's
Preventive measure: Learn all you can about the buyer's motivation
before you accept an offer. Also, be sure the sales contract allows you to keep
the security deposit.