Your Home is Under Contract, Now What?
1. After you've accepted an offer from someone to buy your home, the buyers will usually schedule a home inspection (this is optional). Depending on the offer, the home inspection usually takes place within 7 days of the offer's acceptance. Then, no more than 48 hours after the inspection, we will have a response from the buyers' agent or the buyers themselves.
2. Home Inspection: Your REALTOR® will call you to let you know when the buyers want to schedule their private home inspection. Plan on being out of the home for at least 3 hours for the home inspection. With you out of the house, the buyers will feel more relaxed, while the inspector will have an easier time being able to show them around your home and how things work. Some buyers will also have a termite inspection done.
Inspection results will likely be sent to us within 48 to 72 hours following the inspection. If the inspection is not a positive one, the buyers will likely notify us in writing of the results, along with their intention to move forward, request a credit in lieu of any repairs, or ask that you fix or replace certain items that weren't up to reasonable standards.
3. Next comes the appraisal. Assuming the buyers are happy with the results of the inspection, there will be an appraisal. Usually the appraisal is done within seven days after the home inspection has been given the "all clear". An appraiser will have to be inside your home for about 30 minutes to take pictures, measure square footage and appraise the condition of the house. From there, the appraisal results could take from 1-2 weeks to come in.
4. If the appraisal comes back at the value of the purchase agreement and repairs aren't needed, nothing further is required of the seller. But, if the home doesn’t appraise, we are back to the negotiating table trying to figure out a reasonable price that works for both parties involved. If repairs are noted, try get the repairs done as soon as possible.
5. After we get over the appraisal hurdle, it is time to start packing and prepare for closing. So when you are packing up, make sure to leave all attached items, including window treatments, curtains, light fixtures and chandeliers, blinds, curtain rods, attached mirrors, attached shelving, fireplace doors, screens, storm windows, attached speakers, etc.
6. Don't worry about the utilities right away, the buyer will have them transferred under their name. We do recommend the seller transfers the utilities the day after closing.
7. Then, 5 days before closing, contact your city water department and ask them to come out to do a final water meter reading. If no final meter reading is done, an escrow will be held until the next bill comes and it will be pro-rated.
8. There might be some more waiting as the buyers need to get a “Clear To Close”. A clear to close means all conditions have been met and the buyer has been completely approved and ready to close on the sale of your home (98% of the time we don’t get the clear to close until the day before the scheduled closing date). Banks often get overwhelmed and wait until the last minute for whatever reason. Sometimes we get it earlier and that’s awesome, but don’t be alarmed or think something is out of sorts if we don’t get it until a day or two before the closing date.
9. Finally, on closing day, everyone involved in the sale will need a copy of their drivers license. If you have to write a check or bring cash to closing to sell your house, it needs to be in the form of a Bank Cashiers Check and must be made payable to the title company. This is very important, so please ask us before closing who your title company is.
1. Do I need to be there for the home inspection?
No, you should leave. Usually, this is a time for the inspector and the buyer to get to know the home. They usually like their privacy so they can talk privately without worrying about offending the Seller.
2. If the buyers ask for me to repair or replace something or a dollar amount to be reduced in lieu of the repairs, do I have the right to counter their request?
Yes, you have the opportunity to suggest a counter.
3. I accepted an offer, can I now take the lockbox and key off my door?
No, you should not remove the lockbox and key - the inspector will still need access, as will the appraiser. Finally, just before closing the buyer will do their final walkthrough, so it needs to be attached for that as well.
4. Can I still show our house after we accept an offer?
Yes. After you accept an offer, we can mark your listing “CCS” which means contingent continue to show, and this will be for backup offers only. You cannot accept another offer. Most people do not continue to show once they accept an offer. Our normal procedure is to stop showings and mark it pending. If you want us to continue showing your home, you need to let us know.
5. When should I start packing?
Here at the Haltom Home Team, we would recommend you start packing after the appraisal results are in and we agree on the price.
6. Is it guaranteed that we will close by the contract closing date?
No, absolutely not. Typically loans can take awhile in today's market. Lenders are now very thorough in their underwriting process, so if you’re closing date is 30 days out, there is a better than 50% chance it may not close on time unless the buyer is very clean financially. The closing date is an estimated close by date, only. Very rarely does a deal close earlier than the close by date, and if it does close on time, it is usually the closing date on the purchase agreement.
7. When will we know if we are closing on time?
Crazy as this sounds, we won’t get the clear to close until 24 to 72 hours before closing. That’s just how lenders work. With thousands of files to go through, they prioritize them by closing dates. Don’t be worried if the purchaser buying your home doesn’t get their clear to close until just a couple days before closing.