We Want To Set You Up For Selling Success!!!

‼️PLEASE NOTE we are now brokered by eXp Realty. Call or text Alisha Collins, eXp Realty at 307-247-1806 or email at alisha@casperpowerhouse.com We are excited to talk with you!

We Want To Set You Up For Selling Success. Watch these video to find out how to have selling success.

Is now a good time to sell? Day 1
Is it a good time to sell your home? The lack of homes available for sale continues to be a challenge in the real estate market. And with low mortgage rates fueling buyer demand, buyers are finding it difficult to find a home that they love.

According to the latest “REALTORS® Confidence Index” survey, by The National Association of REALTORS, or NAR, the average house is now receiving 4.1 offers, and is on the market for just 20 days. Now in the Casper area, our average days on the market is a little longer, around 78 days. And in many cases, we are seeing some multiple offers, especially when the house is priced correctly. Buyers are clearly eager to purchase, and because of the shortage of inventory available, they’re often entering bidding wars.

This is one of the factors keeping home prices strong and giving sellers leverage in the negotiation process. Homeowners, who are in a position to sell, shouldn’t wait to make their move. There’s a light at the end of the tunnel for today’s inventory shortage. So listing this spring, will get your house on the market when conditions are the most favorable. With low inventory and high buyer demand, homeowners can potentially earn a greater profit on their house, and sell them quickly in a fast-paced spring market.

We want to set you up for selling success.
Sellers Market? Day 2
What is a seller’s market? In real estate, a seller’s market occurs when there are approximately six months or less of housing inventory available on the market. In other words, if no new inventory was listed for sale, it would take up to six months for all of the already-listed inventory to sell out.

When there are more sellers and more than six months of inventory listed for sale, the scale tips and it becomes what is considered a buyer’s market. Today, there are simply not enough houses available on the market for the number of buyers who are actively looking to purchase them. And it’s creating a serious seller’s market.

According to Danielle Hale, chief economist at realtor.com, total active inventory continues to decline, dropping 52% nationally versus last year, with buyers active in the market and sellers still slow to put houses up for sale. Homes are selling quickly and the total number actively available for sale at any point in time continues to decline. Clearly, many more people are interested in buying than selling this spring, creating the ultimate seller’s market.

When this happens, homeowners who are in the position to sell to have the upper hand in negotiations. According to NAR, agents are reporting an average of 4.1 offers per house and an increase in bidding wars. Now, this isn’t happening in the Casper area but it obviously could. As the seller, this means the ball is in your court, so much that you can use your leverage to negotiate the best possible contract. Demand is there and now is the perfect time to sell for the most favorable seller terms.

We want to set you up for selling success.
What is a CMA? Day 3
What is a CMA report? If you are going to sell your house, you need to know the facts on what your home is worth. A CMA is another term for comparative market analysis, a report created for homeowners that is designed to describe what their home is worth according to the market.

A quality CMA report is specifically created to compare the most recent sold homes that are comparable in size and style to your home with similar features and in close proximity. Then we make adjustments for your home’s unique features, such as square footage of the finished and unfinished areas of your home, size and capacity of your garage. Do you have a shop? Do you have a fenced yard or acreage? The condition of your roof, and so on. A current CMA report is helpful to have when you wanna know what your home is worth, especially when you’re going to refinance your home or list it for sale.

Real estate agents and brokers create CMA reports to help sellers set the listing price for their home and to help buyers make competitive offers for comparable properties, known as comps, on real estate listing sites. We’ll provide you with a market analysis free of charge. If you’re interested in knowing what your home is worth, let me know and I’ll send you this free report.

We want to set you up for selling success.

Getting your home ready to sell!  Day 4
What are the five things to do when preparing your home for sale?

Clutter. Organize the things you want to keep, get rid of the stuff you don’t, and toss out the junk. I always tell sellers to pack up anything they won’t be needing for the next couple of months. You can consider this a headstart in packing.

Clean. Make sure your home is sparkling clean from top to bottom. This means pressure wash the exterior, scrub those baseboards, shine those faucets. You may even want to consider hiring a cleaning service that can give you a helping hand.

Check for smells. It may seem silly, but it’s true: Many buyers will walk away from a home because of the smell. Get rid of those old dirty rugs and replace or clean your carpets. Have your upholstery cleaned, and give your dog a bath.

Fix anything that needs to be repaired. If it should be functioning and it’s not, get it fixed so that it’s functioning properly. Repair all wood rot and repair any leaks. If you have to ask, “Should I fix this,” the answer is almost always yes. More about this in a later series.

Staging. We’re gonna talk about this as well later, but 77% of buyers’ agents say staging made it easier for the buyer to visualize the home as their own. The top rooms to stage, in order, to attract more buyers are the living room, the master bedroom, the kitchen, the dining room. If your home needs a little pick-me-up, we can provide staging at no cost to the seller to make sure your home looks its best.

If you’re thinking about selling, I’d be happy to stop by and walk through your home and let you know what needs to be done before you sell. We want to set you up for selling success.
Remodel or Repairs? Day  5
Do you need to remodel before selling? Sometimes homeowners wonder whether they need to get their house ready with some remodeling in order to make it more appealing for buyers, even with the market moving so quickly, they’re items that should be done for you to get top dollar.

I do think that items that need to be fixed are different in each house. When we walk through your home during the market analysis, we can give you our recommendations on what you should do. Here are three of the items we most often suggest replacing if needed and for you to do them before listing or at least by closing.

Number one, do you have a T-lock roof? These roof shingles are no longer made. So replacement shingles can’t be found. 95% of the time, the buyer will want the seller to replace a T-lock roof, because the roof is not insurable by many insurance companies, and the few that do ensure the roofs do so at a very reduced value. So this is really important. One of the reasons we have homeowners insurance is to cover our roof. Side note here, we have lots of weather in our area, as you know. Some of the architectural shingle roofs which are the type that typically replace the T-lock roofs are now needing to be replaced because they’ve been around for a while. We want you to be aware of that. This is something that you may have to deal with when your home goes under contract, and we work through inspections. If you do need to replace your roof, whether you have a T-lock or architectural, it is always a good idea to call your insurance company, if you have wind or hail damage, because they may replace it for you. We’ll talk more on inspections later in the series.

Number two, what shape is your flooring in? Carpet or other flooring that is worn wrinkled or stained has got to go. Frequently, I do suggest that it be replaced before we go active on the market because it’s a big visual item people will see as they walk through the house that sometimes becomes a sticking point and they can’t get passed it. However, in this market we’re in, if that is the only item in your home that needs to be fixed, we can usually get it past the buyer, as long as we do it before closing.

Number three, paint. Paint is a very inexpensive upgrade and a new coat of paint makes a huge difference in the look of your home. Sometimes painting just the area that is seen when you walk in the front door is enough to make your home present well. What colors do you have around your home? Neutrals are best when you are choosing to repaint. So let us know if you need help in deciding which colors to choose. Trim around the doors and the baseboards. They to do take the brunt of damage from pets, shoes, kids, and all of us. So freshening that paint up also helps with your home looking fresh and clean.

Again, I can guide you on what repairs, if any, you should make. We want you to have selling success.
Home Pricing Strategy   Day 6
Do you have a home pricing strategy? We all want the most money possible when we list our homes for sale, even me, so I get it. Pricing strategy matters significantly when you’re pricing your home. Did you know there are three ways to price your home?

Number one, price your home at the highest price, higher than the real estate agent’s suggestion. I sometimes hear a seller say, “We can always go down.” Well, this can be risky. There are lots of studies that show pricing too high can net you way less in the long run. I can show you lots of homes where this is the case. And as agents, we really don’t like this option because of the less price that you get. Here’s a recent example. The market analysis came in at 395,000 but we thought we could push the market a little bit so we were going to list it at 405,000. Sellers thought about it and decided they wanted to list at 440,000. And after 10 months in this hot seller’s market, the home finally sold for $365,000. In this scenario, the seller missed significant exposure at the list price that was reasonable for the market. Priced at 405,000, this home would most likely have sold quickly for the price much closer to the list price. If you insist on pricing your home higher than it should be, you can’t stay too high or too long or the above could happen.

Number two, pricing your home exactly at the market price when compared to other like homes. In this option, you should sell quickly but may not have quite as many showings. You will have more competition here because a majority of homes are priced at market value. Your home priced this way will obviously sell faster than the home that is priced too high but probably not as quick as a home priced right under market.

Which brings us to number three, pricing your home right under market price. This is where the magic happens. And I’m not talking about tens of thousands of dollars less but a little less. Not only does this attract people to your home, many times it generates more than one offer. In this scenario, you aren’t chasing the buyer. They are chasing you. Sometimes you get higher offers than you would have gotten if you priced your home at market price. Of course, every situation is different but usually option number two and three are the best way to go.

We want to set you up for selling success.
What is your home worth?  Day 7
Are you wondering what your home is worth? Using Zillow’s automated Zestimate to determine the value of your home may not be the best plan, even as a starting point, especially in our market.

Let’s put it into perspective. Just relying on Zillow alone might be like using a dating app. People always put their best pictures up or a picture from 15 years ago. Sometimes they may even use pictures of someone else they think is more attractive. My point is these impersonal apps don’t necessarily offer a true representation of the house you’re evaluating or the local real estate market any more than a dating app represents a person whose profile you’re looking at or of the dating pool. Using a dating app and relying solely on it for accuracy of the way a person’s profile reads is like only using Zillow to find the value of your home.

While we’re not sure where Zillow comes up with their estimated home values, we do know their valuation model is automated and impersonal. These estimates are based on information from sources such as comparable sales and public data. Zillow has never been inside your home and therefore their estimate of value is based on what your neighbors have sold their home for and only considers things like size of the home, how many bedrooms or bathrooms it has. Zillow basically compares those specs for your home to that of your neighbors. And they can’t take into consideration things like condition, upgrades, views, location, or amenities. They don’t adjust for a busy street or if you live in a cul-de-sac. And all of those personalized things affect the price greatly.
To determine a more accurate market value, we need to see your home in person and make adjustments. And although we are not appraisers, our approach is very similar to the way an appraiser would evaluate your property when considering pricing. Hey, maybe you just put in a $100,000 shop or barn or a riding arena and Zillow didn’t take any of that into consideration or maybe you just upgraded your entire kitchen and the remodel cost you $50,000. All of these factors have a huge impact on value of your home.

Listen, Zillow isn’t trying to hide their imperfections. They even have a disclaimer listed on their What is a Zestimate page and acknowledge their lack of accuracy by saying, “In the US as a whole, “Zestimates are currently within 10% of the final sales price 61% of the time for homes “that are now off the market.” In Wyoming, they admit that they’re only within 10% of the final sales price 52.9% of the time. And they only get within 20% of the final sales price 76.2% of the time.

Wow, I would not use those odds to determine what my most valued asset is worth, would you? Zillow encourages you actually to get an accurate evaluation by a licensed realtor or appraiser. This is what my team and I do. We live, work, and play in this area and are top agents in our area. We take a detailed look at not only the comparable properties but also at your property in conjunction with firsthand knowledge about comparable properties on the market in your home’s price range.

If you’re thinking of making a move this year, give us a call today for a personalized market evaluation. This is a free service we provide.

We want to set you up for selling success.
What are buyers looking for? Day  8
What are home-buyers even looking for in this crazy seller’s market? Do you know if your home checks all the boxes that buyers are looking for?

Move-in-ready is still the top contender, especially now that new-construction homes are taking so long to build because there are so many people who want them.

Updating existing homes with similar size and amenities are for sure a favorite. If your home needs some updating, a buyer is going to respond in kind with an offer that reflects the quality of the home and the updates they perceive will need to be done.
Most people still won’t spend more than they should for a property, even when the market is strong in the seller’s favor. But if someone decides they love it so much they do agree to pay an inflated price, because they in most cases will be using a loan to purchase the property, the home will still have to appraise for the contracted price.
Believe it or not, this is one of the biggest obstacles we’ve been facing lately: homes not meeting appraised value, coming in lower than the negotiated price because of the condition or it is not move-in ready. Some appraisals are coming in lower, under the contract price. These low appraisals are much more common than in years past.
Sellers are sometimes aggressively overpricing homes in the process to try to get as much as possible for them, either not aware of or not concerned with the fact that the house must appraise, but that’s a whole ‘nother issue I’m going to talk about later in this selling series.

If you would like more information about selling your home, click the link below or send us a message. We’re here to make your real estate hopes and dreams come true, because our focus is always real estate, relationships, and results.

We want to set you up for selling success.
Curb Appeal! Day 9
When looking at your home, the first thing buyer’s see is the curb appeal. So I’m going to give you three inexpensive projects that you can do yourself that will add value to your curb appeal.

The first tip: Plant trees and flowers to add to that curb appeal. They can be small or big. Over time they will grow and mature to make your curb appeal very beautiful. When selecting flowers to plant, choose a vibrant and happy color that will stand out.

The second tip: Is to paint the exterior of your home to give the outside a facelift. Paint is one of the top home improvement projects you can do to make your home quickly change. And it’s low cost.

The third tip: That we recommend is to replace the worn out front door. A lot of times, front doors are dinged up, scratched, have cobwebs on them, just don’t look that good. So you might be able to just clean it up and paint it, but if you can’t, then you want to buy a new door. They’re very affordable and instantly give your home that facelift it needs.

We want to make a great first impression when a buyer drives up to your home so they are excited to walk inside. These few tips will help drastically with that.

Remember, we want to set you up for selling success.
Most Important thing when selling!  Day 10
What’s the most important thing to consider when selling your home? Believe it or not, the most important thing to consider when it comes to selling your home is actually something pretty simple: Cleanliness.

Having a thoroughly-cleaned home has been ranked as the single most effective way of making your home appeal to buyers. Cleanliness is considered by buyers to be more important than decor, odors, furnishings, and even architecture. It’s also one of the quickest and cheapest methods you can use to add value.

You might be wondering what exactly is it about cleaning that makes it so important to the process of selling my home? To answer this question, try to put yourself in the buyer’s shoes. If you were buying a home, one of the most important aspects of a showing would be the ability to visualize yourself living comfortably in that property and making it home. To help a prospective buyer to do this, you need to present them with a blank canvas. They need to be able to see their own personal touch, possessions, furniture, and their desired lifestyle fitting into this blank canvas you’ve created. Ultimately, what this all boils down to is that your home needs to be clutter-free, distraction-free, thoroughly clean, and ready for the buyer to move right in.

In addition to this, a sparkling clean home gives the right first impression to the buyer. It not only shows that your home is well-cared for, it demonstrates that it’s a home you loved and that it’s been properly maintained. But this seems like such a big task.

How do I make this cleanliness thing happen?
• First, you need to de-clutter all the rooms in your house, including all flat surfaces, walls, worktops, and storage spaces. Pack away anything you wanna keep but don’t absolutely need out on display. Give away or sell items you no longer need. This process will make your home appear cleaner and will give the buyer an impression of having more space.

• Then you need to make sure the property itself is as clean as possible. Scrub your house from top to bottom. Everything should sparkle and smell fresh and clean. Clean those carpets, dust off the light fixtures, door jams, windowsills, clean the glass, including the mirrors and the windows, and make sure the showers look new again. We have some tips for this if you need ’em.

• Once it’s all clean, if possible before leaving for the day or before leaving for a showing, quickly pick up any additional clutter that’s accumulated, perhaps placing it in an attractive basket or one you can cover and quickly tuck in the bottom of a closet.

We want to set you up for selling success.
Staged for Success!  Day 11
When your home goes on the market, we want it staged for success. So we’re gonna give you a couple of ways to do that.

Staging your home may sound costly and because of a myth, many sellers opt not to do it. They’re missing out because staging doesn’t always have to be expensive. There are plenty of options to stage your home without spending a dime.

• Store small kitchen appliances in cabinets, remote controls inside of side tables, put mail in junk drawers, shoes and coats in the closets, toothbrush and toothpaste inside your cabinet drawers, tissue boxes inside cabinets, even everyday items like these should not be in plain sight for buyers to see when they’re touring your home.

• Eliminate the distractions so they can focus on the space itself. Coco Chanel once said, before you leave the house, look in the mirror and remove one accessory. This expression is similar to the way we want people to view staging when your home is for sale. Too much furniture will make a room look small. Remove a few pieces, which will open up the room for a larger appearance. Less is more when it comes to staging a home.

• A simple way to spruce your bathroom up while your home is listed is to add fresh linen. Clean, new fluffy towels displayed on open shelves or hanging neatly over a towel rack will make more your bath feel luxurious and welcoming. It also gives off a staged model home vibe, which will help sell your home for more in less time.

• Have large baskets handy. Go through the home and pick up any loose items that you need to put away quickly. This should be loose nail pieces, shoes that were left out, toys that weren’t put away, remote controls for the TV, and any other miscellaneous items that are not in their proper storage place. Grab these items and lay them in the basket. Cover the basket up with a throw blanket or a pillow, and voila, your home looks tidy and ready to go.

Remember, we want to set you up for selling success.
Home Warranty! Day 12
What is the one item that you can include in your home sale that reduces headaches for you and for the buyer after closing? A home warranty.

I cannot tell you the number of times a water heater or something else like that has gone out the day after closing, a few days after closing or weeks after closing, even after the buyer had inspections and thought everything was fine. Having something go wrong upsets everyone and let’s face it, it can cause a lot of drama. If a home warranty has been provided by the seller, the new homeowners simply calls the warranty company for service instead of frantically calling the seller or the agents.

Home warranties cost between $350 and $560 and cover a gamut of issues that can come up after closing. Such as gas leaks, water heater, kitchen appliances, some plumbing and electrical, furnace, central air and other items.

A home warranty also gives the buyer some peace of mind knowing that they shouldn’t have to pay for some of the big ticket items if something goes wrong soon after closing. Another nice thing about home warranties is that they can be renewed every year, which obviously would be done by the buyer, after the seller purchases the initial warranty.

Recently, we had a buyer that did receive a home warranty at closing, who had to call the warranty company to replace the microwave and the dishwasher in their home right after closing. I am not sure how many times they have told me that they are so glad they had a home warranty. The home warranty company replaced those items. So it did not become a burden for them after moving to town and buying the home.

This demonstrates how much stress is relieved from new buyers. In the end, the sellers benefited from it also. By providing reassurance to the buyer before the sale and ultimately they avoided having to contend with a frustrating situation, that was no one’s fault after the sale. In today’s fast-paced market, offering a home warranty is one solid way to set your property apart from the competition.

We want to set you up for selling success.
Prepare Home Showing!  Day 13
Now let’s prepare your home for showing. With our current market conditions, it is very likely that you will get showings fairly quickly after we put your home live online. So get ready.

So when you get an appointment to show your house, leave your home 10 to 15 minutes before the buyer and their agent are supposed to be there. It is better if you don’t see the buyer and their agent. Allow the communication to go between the agents and don’t answer questions from the buyer or another agent if they ask you because it could put you at a big disadvantage when negotiating later.

You also do not want to be there for the showings. The buyer needs to be free to talk to their agent without worrying about what you will think. This is a good thing because if they’re making a comment about the paint or a sink they don’t like, the agent knows about it and can talk with the buyer about what it would take to fix whatever the buyer doesn’t like.
Paint is cheap and sometimes all a buyer needs is the reminder that paint is a great way to make the house theirs.

Take your dogs with you if possible, if you can during the showing, especially if they bark when they see strangers. It is super-hard to stay in a house long enough to look at everything when the dogs are barking. Also, if it’s wet outside, that wet dog smell in your house is not the best smell when you’re trying to sell your home.

Another smell that isn’t normally good is food. If a seller cooks something that smells up the house, even if it’s something delicious and the smell is still lingering when the buyer looks at the house, it can be a big turnoff. So please don’t put food in your Crock-Pot right before an open house. One thing you could do before an open house or a showing is to bake cookies.

Turn on every light in your home, even when it’s daylight. Open all the curtains and blinds. This makes your home appear brighter, larger, more open, and way more inviting.

Some of this goes without saying but when I show homes, I see this fairly often so I thought I better mention it. Pick up the laundry from the floor, close the toilet seat, flush and put the lid down, take out the trash, mow the grass, shovel the snow off the walks if there is some. You want the buyer to walk in and feel like everything is light, bright, clean, and easy to love.

Remember, we want to set you up for selling success.
Professional Photos!  Day 14
Is a picture really worth 1,000 words? Why do pictures of your house matter so much on your listing?

According to the National Association of Realtors, 97.5% of home buyers start or complete part of their home search online. Buyers are deciding whether or not to look at your home when it’s listed sometimes based only on a few pictures.

So the pictures that an agent or their assistant took with their cell phone is not good enough. I have actually seen pictures with the picture-taker’s finger in them. That’s not photography.

Having one picture of the front and no other pictures is just not good enough. When a house is placed on the Multi-List System, it filters through hundreds of websites throughout the internet. And the first view people see of your house needs to be great and needs to offer more than a drive-by view of the front of the house. If they don’t like what they see, the potential buyer might not look at your listing again.

The first time they see your house for sale, it should have 25, 40, 50 pictures. Five or six pictures is not good enough. I recently saw a home listed on MLS in a higher price range that just had one picture and that was a screenshot of the Google Street View. A screenshot. What? That is not good enough. And that is just addressing the pictures.

Your home is worth great, professional pictures as well as professional videography. We include videography with drone footage above your home as part of our marketing for your home. People love to see this.

Putting your best foot forward the moment your home is listed is so important. When someone finds your home, whether through an agent or online, they’ll want to look at it in person. The completeness of your listing could cost you unnecessary time and may mean a difference of thousands of dollars.

We want you to have success when selling.
Marketing your home!  Day 15
Now, how do we market your house? It takes so much more to properly market a home than simply putting a listing on the multi-list service, sticking a sign in the yard and holding an occasional open house. This just does not cut it in the digital age. We have to use multiple social media platforms.

Did you know research shows that most agents don’t truly utilize these social media platforms effectively? Most agents will say they use social media to promote listings, but you should never be bashful about asking an agent for statistics to back up that claim.

We know how to advertise our home videos on Facebook and who to advertise them to through retargeting. Here are some of the results that we have gotten on Facebook. This home had 15,000 views. Here’s another one that had 15,000 views, 25,000 views, and even over 35,000 views. This is just some of the results.

My YouTube numbers continue to climb with my most recent video at just over 1,000 views. One from eight months ago has 50,000 views that were unpaid, only by searching. This is a great benefit for our sellers. More views and more subscribers means more eyes on your home.

We have a virtual marketing arsenal that includes a proven digital marketing strategy, professional photos, and professional videos, including drone footage and a beautiful virtual tour of your home.

We have a Matterport that provides a 360 degree view of your home. We use paid ads to place your home video on multiple social media platforms that can target and retarget prospective buyers.

We provide a website that is created just for your home and utilize a proven plan to drive traffic to that website. We use additional online paid marketing to get people to your open house.

We create customized just-listed postcards that are mailed to your community and have a large warm market of buyers to show your home to.

All of this and we haven’t even begun to talk about the value of being able to get in touch with your realtor. There’s really so much that we do to get your home sold as quickly as possible for the most money as possible. The processes and strategies for selling your home have changed dramatically in the last few years. You need an agent that has adapted and changed as the technology has changed. Let me know if you would like to see our detailed marketing plan or if you’re considering a move and you’d like to discuss your next steps.

We want to set you up for selling success.
Accessability!  Day 16
Let’s talk about accessibility for buyers to view your home.

As soon as your home hits the multi-List system, it is automatically sent to hundreds of websites. Buyers are frequenting those sites and may have searches set up by their agent, so they see it immediately. This means that the moment your house hits the market, it’s being viewed by prospective buyers and more than likely, you will have showings fairly quickly. You need to be ready for it.

When buyers are ready and they want to see your home, you really need to let them. You do not want to miss the initial showings on your property. Having restricted times for showings drastically limits your buyer pool. Because most of the time, the buyer is looking at other houses when they see your house, and is making a decision quickly and will not revisit your home later.

Recently, I’ve listed a house for a police officer that worked nights. He made arrangements during the day to sleep elsewhere, so that his house could be shown. This turned out to be a very brief, but worthwhile inconvenience. His house went under contract in less than a week because buyers had adequate access to his home.

Another time, I listed a home with shift workers that were very adamant that the showings would have to work around their unusual schedule. In the first two weeks, we missed six buyers that never revisited the property after they initially asked to see the home. Unfortunately, that home took over six months to sell.

Now, with all that said, it’s important that you know I want to do what you want to do. If you give me specific limited times that the house can be shown and that is it, that’s perfectly okay, it’s your home. But I just want you to be aware it’s very likely that this will limit otherwise serious buyers, and almost certain to lengthen the time your home is on the market.

In our current market, serious buyers are making decisions super quick. And I would love for you to get top dollar for your home in the least amount of time. If you’re thinking of making a move and are ready to discuss the next step, or would like to see a detailed marketing plan, please reach out to me.

We want to set you up for selling success.
In Person Showings!  Day 17
You know you need to have in-person showing so buyers can see firsthand how great your house is. But for more than a year now, we’ve been dealing with how to best showcase your home during a pandemic.

We’re all accustomed to taking basic precautions now. But in these strange times, are you still concerned about letting people walk through your home? If you want or need to sell, we have a few tips to offer you that we hope will put your mind at ease. It is important to note here that I am not a doctor. I am trained to help you buy and sell real estate. I would like to share with you some precautions that can be taken as they have been suggested to us.

You can request or require perspective buyers and their agents to wear masks and gloves, perhaps providing some at the door as well as providing booties to go over shoes or even requiring shoes to be removed.

You may request or require the use of hand sanitizer going in and out of your home. I do suggest that even if you do not take any other of the precautions, at least provide hand sanitizer, making it available for prospective buyers and their agents.

In addition, before you leave for showing, turn on every light in the home and ask that no one turns them off or on. This also gives your home that light and bright feeling. Open all of the bedroom and bathroom doors so that buyers and their agents do not have to touch anything more than what they do. When you return home, wipe down any door knobs, handles, faucets, or light switches that people may have inadvertently touched: front door, sliding door, door to the garage, etc.

Another option to consider is taking a mini-vacation. Leave your home for a few days, perhaps staying in a hotel, for the initial showings. And then have your home professionally cleaned and sanitized before you go back home. The other great thing about this is your home will be fully available for showings during the first few days of putting it on the market, when we know you’re likely to have the most interest in it. Of course, we’ll make a video and virtual tour of your home available online, which will increase the number of serious buyers touring.

We want to set you up for selling success.
Why Hasnt my home sold?  Day 18
Why hasn’t my home sold yet? What does a seller do if their house is listed but not being shown and is not selling?

There are a few adages in real estate that as a young agent, starting off, yes that was almost 18 years ago for me, we remember daily and they help selling houses. In today’s competitive market, if your home has been priced correctly and is being marketed properly, you should be seeing results very quickly. Of course, there may be exceptions but in general this is true. So, if your home is on the market and you’re not getting the results you think you should, these adages are for you.

Adage number one, if your home is not being shown or it’s being shown but not selling especially in a sellers market, then the problem is either price or condition. Basically pricing and condition must be equally matched. Most of the time when a home is finally listed, the seller is not going to be interested in working on the condition. If the seller is willing to do that, the condition should be fixed before the home is active on the market. That leaves us with price. In our current sellers market climate, if your house is not being shown, it comes back to price. I have seen listings that were priced five to 10,000 too high, that once reduced by that amount they elicited two or three offers almost immediately. Even in a sellers market, price matters.

Adage number two, if you have 10 showings and no offers, your price is too high. Obviously this is a loose number. Sometimes the 14th person writes an offer but I am sure you get my point. If you are getting showing after showing and no offer, you really do need to revisit what price your home is listed more. We have to be super careful. We don’t stay too high for too long, or you may end up getting less than if we would have just reduced your home’s price one time.

Adage number three, your first offer is your best offer. I do not mean if you take the first offer you get exactly how it’s written. What I do mean is that you’ll want to negotiate that first offer that best you can. Side note here. I encourage sellers to counter every offer. Of course, I want to do whatever you wanna do, so, if you are adamant against countering an offer, I will concur. Sometimes buyers just need to know where you stand as far as price. So if you counter, they will accept or at least meet you somewhere within a range that you can be happy with price wise. There have been so many times that sellers have not worked at that first offer and later they wished that they would have because they often end up selling their home for less than what they would’ve gotten if they would have just negotiated out that first offer.

The guidance and the knowledge provided to you by working with an experienced agent can make all the difference when you’re deciding how to price your home and how to negotiate any offers you may receive.

Remember, we want to set you up for selling success.
What do we do with an offer?  Day 19
What do we do when we get an offer on your home?

In our current market, it is quite possible that you will get more than one offer on your home if you price it right. Some price points are definitely hotter than others in the Casper area. Here are some tips about negotiating an offer.

Response time is critical. Recently, I was working with a serious buyer who made an offer, but the seller, through the listing agent, didn’t respond in a timely manner. This aggravated the buyer, and upon the late response, the buyer didn’t wanna negotiate any further and no sale was made. Response time is so important. Even if we just have a few hours to respond, we need to make sure we have the response of the accepted offer or counteroffer back to the buyer’s agent on time.

Work with the offer you have. Don’t count on an offer that you don’t have, even though you heard it was supposed to be coming. If we hear another offer is coming, but we don’t have it and we’re nearing the expiration of the other offer that’s in our hand, we need to respond to the offer we have. All too often, I have heard that an agent is sending an offer on a home, and then, at the last minute, the buyer changed their mind.

Read and understand any offer you’ve received. Make sure you understand all of the clauses and provisions in the contract before you sign. I will go over the contract with you to make sure you understand. Of course, you can always call your attorney for a legal opinion.

I also have sellers triple check that all the personal property that is included in the offer is really staying. Are you taking the washer and dryer and the refrigerator with you, or maybe the hot tub? Double-triple check, because if the buyer asks for it in the contract, once you sign, it is staying.

Do all the dates work into your timeline? How long does the buyer have to do inspections and ask for repairs? It is so important to have an experienced agent to walk you through the home-selling process from start to finish.

The Alisha Collins Real Estate Team wants to set you up for selling success.
Backup Offers! Day 20
Let’s talk about backup offers.

First, what is the backup offer? Sometimes house goes under contract, but then a couple of days or weeks, but there’s another buyer or multiple buyers that still wanna purchase the home. That is where a backup offer comes in. Even though a contract is in place, a prospective buyer can still write an offer known as a backup offer in which they acknowledge that they are aware you have a contract in place but they’re still interested and that their offer will go into first position if the initial contract falls through. As a seller, you can decide whether or not to accept a backup offer. A backup offer can be helpful for both buyers and sellers. As we go through the process in multiple ways.

Number one, a backup offer provides more assurance that if your original contract falls through for any reason, you have a buyer who is immediately ready to move forward.

Number two, when you have a backup offer in place, you have some leverage that can help immensely during the negotiations of any repairs whether with the initial buyer or the backup buyer. When considering asking a seller to complete repairs, a buyer who was under contract, but is aware of there is a backup offer in play may be less likely to ask for extensive repairs to be completed by the seller or at the seller’s expense because the seller is in a better position to simply move on to the back offer. And can state up front that they’re aware of but won’t perform XYZ repairs. Since we know the backup buyer is very serious about wanting the property, they’re likely to accept the property as it is.

Most backup contracts do have a clause that if a buyer finds another house, they can pull their offer. But it’s less likely for that to happen right now considering our current fast moving market with very few properties available on the market.

We want to set you up for selling success.
Under Contract Day 21
How exciting, your house is under contract. You don’t have to keep it perfect anymore. Haha, I was just kidding, sorry.

It’s so exciting when your home goes under contract. You’ve worked so hard to get your home ready to sell, you’ve kept everything cleaned and picked up every day. You’re under contract, but don’t let your guard down yet. You want your home to stay in great condition throughout all the milestones of your offer. So you might not have to pick everything up in the house every day as you did with showings, but you do want your home looking amazing every step of the way, for the inspections, the appraisal, and for any other time the buyer may be in your home.

There are times that the buyers may wanna go back, whether during inspections, for some quick measurements, or they may be so excited they just wanna look again. Sometimes I have had sellers get very upset at the prospect of a buyer accessing the property after the contract is signed. Sometimes buyers have only seen your home once and they start forgetting things about the home, like how big it is, positioning of bedrooms. Ideally, we want them to stay excited throughout the entire process. Letting them look again and get jazzed up can actually be an important step to help us get through the transaction.

Home inspections may involve a general home inspector looking over almost every aspect of your home’s condition. From a quick look at the roof, plumbing, electrical, heating systems to appliance function, paint, and more, or may involve several specific inspections such as radon tests, well inspection, or separate plumbing, roofing, mechanical, heating inspection, and more. It is common for the buyers to accompany the home inspector as they walk through so that they clearly understand the evaluations provided by the inspectors.

It is very important to know we want your home looking absolutely amazing for the appraiser. They are evaluating your home’s quality, condition, and value. Frequently, this is directly related to the buyer’s specific financing requirements. The appraisal determines if the appraised value of your property will meet the contract price. This is another time you want your home to absolutely look its best.

We want to set you up for selling success.
3 Negotiations In Every Contract! Day 22
Sellers, did you know that you negotiate with your buyer three times between the initial contract and closing?

The first negotiation occurs at the time the seller gets the offer. The initial offers sets the wheels in motion and we negotiate things like purchase price, closing costs and dates. This is the negotiation that most people are familiar with.

After the initial offers is negotiated and accepted, the buyers schedule their inspections. Once the inspections are completed, the buyers request for repairs to be done at the seller’s expense. This is negotiation number two. The agents negotiate for the buyer and the seller to come to an agreement on what the seller will repair.

The third negotiation is after the bank orders the buyer’s appraisal. The appraisal not only gives us the value of the home but also tells us the requirements that are required to be completed before the buyer can receive the loan and close on the property. So now we have to negotiate on who complete those repairs.

With all of this negotiating, it is so important that your agent is a negotiating expert. Do you know that only 3% of the agents in the United States sell more than 24 homes per year? My team sold over 250 homes last year. That means we negotiated more than 750 times. Yes, you heard me right. 750 times, we do love to negotiate for you too. We want to set you up for selling success.
Today we’re going to talk about contract deadlines. Deadlines are one of the most important aspects of a real estate transaction, because the dates in the contract can really affect your outcome. When an offer is made, there’s an expiration date, determined by the buyer on that offer. The seller must respond by the expiration date or the offer becomes invalid. Most of the time there’s not much time to consider the offer.

I always say, if a seller wants to sell, and the buyer wants to buy, let’s put it together quickly, why wait? If the seller misses the deadline without the extension signed by all parties in place, the buyer is no longer obligated by their offer and can go find another house. That said, I am not a big fan of offer extensions. Why do we write the dates in the contract if we’re just going to keep extending them.

Next, the earnest money must be received within a certain number of hours. We often see buyers write in their offer that they want 24 to 72 business hours to turn in earnest money. Sometimes it’s even 96 hours, especially if the buyers live out of town or state. If earnest money isn’t delivered where it’s supposed to go, and the receipt in hand by the deadline, technically, per the terms of the contract, it offer’s void. In this scenario, the seller could accept another offer. A pre-qual may accompany an offer, or the offer may state it is to be delivered upon acceptance, or by a set time. If this deadline is not met, again you’re technically out of contract, and again the seller could accept a different offer.

Buyer inspections must be completed by the objection deadline. This is the buyer’s opportunity to ask the seller to complete items that they want to have repaired. If the seller doesn’t receive objections by the deadline, the buyer’s obligated to accept the property in as is condition. If a buyer determines that the roof is bad, and objections aren’t received by the deadline, they’ve accepted the property in as is condition. They can no longer expect the seller to repair or replace the roof. And they won’t be able to cancel the contract due to property condition. They always can still try to ask for repairs, but most the time it does not happen.

Between the objection deadline and the resolution deadline we renegotiate to make sure that both parties have come together in agreement. If the buyer and the seller can’t reach an agreement, or the seller doesn’t respond by the resolution deadline, the buyer must decide whether to back out of the deal or take the house in as is condition. If they don’t respond by the resolution deadline, then they’re taking it in as is condition.

Obviously you have a real estate agent that’s helping you through the process, but I tell all of my clients, you want those dates in your phone, in your planner, sticky notes on your fridge, on your computer screen, whatever it takes to make sure that you do not miss those dates.

One deadline that is not talked about much but is huge is the title deadline, the day the buyer gets to review and potentially object to the title commitment. It is critical that you’re aware if there is a problem with the title on a property.

The last dates that I’ll address here are the closing deadline and possession of the property. Obviously we need to take the closing date, that is dependent upon the lender and the loan underwriter, also appraisers are running behind. If something happens and you realize you can’t close on time, or meet any of those other deadlines, it is critical we renegotiate a contract extension before the deadline expires. I realize there is a lot of information here to digest, but of course if you’re working with an experienced agent they’ll be able to help you monitor the necessary dates and deadlines. We want to set you up for selling success.
Earnest money, what is it and how does it affect the seller?

Earnest money is monetary proof that the buyer is serious about buying your home. Earnest money may accompany an offer or it may be due within a certain amount of time after the offer’s accepted as per the terms of the written contract.

When the earnest money has been received, the money is documented with a receipt and it is deposited into a trust account usually with the real estate company or title company. Earnest money gives the seller some protection during the time their property is off the market and provides them some reassurance that the buyer will not just back out without having a good reason for doing so, as specified in the contract.

As I’ve mentioned before, in a seller’s market with few properties available and many buyers searching, much like we’re experiencing right now, a seller may receive multiple offers on a home. Savvy buyers in many markets are increasing the amount of earnest money they’re offering in order to signal to the seller that they are very serious.

In the Casper area, earnest money is usually somewhere between $500 to $2,000 depending on the purchase price of the property, but the amount of earnest money that is offered and ultimately required for the offer to come together is ultimately up to the buyer and the seller to negotiate.

When making an offer, the buyer decides on an initial amount of earnest money they’ll offer. If the seller chooses to negotiate the offer, they’re evaluating not only the purchase price but also the amount of earnest money the buyer is offering. A seller may accept the amount of earnest money offered or they might counter the offer for a higher amount of earnest money.

At closing, the earnest money that is held is then credited towards the purchase price. For example, if the buyer’s closing figures show that the buyer needs to bring $2,000 at closing and the buyer has initially presented $500 earnest money, then the buyer will bring $1500 to closing for the total payment of $2,000.

There are some ways that buyers might get their earnest money back. For example, after a buyer completes inspections, if they do not like the results of the inspection for any reason, unless the contract states otherwise, they can cancel the contract and receive their earnest money back. Potentially this could happen if the buyer fails to qualify for the loan for some reason as well. It could also happen if the appraised value comes in lower than the purchase price and the contract contains an appraisal clause stating that the property must appraise for a value equal to or greater than the purchase price or be renegotiated, but you and the buyer cannot come to an agreement about the purchase price.

There are some scenarios that may occur in which the seller may be entitled to keep the earnest money. One example would be if the buyer has done inspections per the terms of the contract, but they don’t object to the property condition in writing by the objection deadline. Then they elect to walk away from the contract due to the property condition, leaving the seller no choice but to start all over with the process of finding another buyer.

These are just a few examples of how earnest money affects a seller. I can’t emphasize enough the value of working with an experienced agent when you are selling your home, someone who can guide you through every step of the process. We want to set you up for selling success.
What is a pre-qualification letter and why is it important? A pre-qualification or pre-qual letter not only reinforces the strength of the offer the buyer has presented, but it also lists the other items that the buyer may be required to do in order to get the loan.

In the ideal offer scenario, a buyer’s pre-qualification letter or actually proof of funds if they’re paying cash, will be presented at the time of the offer. Sometimes though, the buyer’s pre-qual letter may not accompany the offer, whether due to the offer being made over the weekend or simply the timing of the offer. If the prequel is not presented along with the offer, then the listing agent and the seller absolutely need to verify that on whatever date the contract specifies, the pre-qualification letter is due.

It has been received, both seller and listing agent should review it carefully to ensure that it reflects the buyer is pre-qualified, based on the terms outlined in the offer.

Every once in a while, something will be noted in the pre-qualification letter that was not specified in the offer. For example, the pre-qual may specify that the buyer is required to sell their current house before they’ll qualify to buy yours. It may state that their credit score needs to go up a certain number of points as a condition of approval, or the lender might not have the buyer’s completed application or the buyer’s tax records or proof of income documents and still needs to review them. It is very important for the listing agent and the seller to read, review and understand the pre-qualification letter as it relates to the contract.

Anytime a seller’s lucky enough to be entertaining multiple offers, it is important to note, an offer which is accompanied by a pre-qualification letter is a much stronger offer than one without. When a mortgage lender issues a pre-qualification letter, they are typically stating that the buyer has applied for a mortgage, that they have pulled a credit report on the buyer, as well as look at items like taxes, income, other debts and have calculated the debt to income ratio.

Lenders almost always have a clause in the pre-qual, stating that the home has to appraise for a value not less than the purchase price and it’s contingent on there being no changes in the buyer’s information before closing.

These are just a few examples of how pre-qualification affects a seller. I can’t emphasize enough, the value of working with an experienced agent when your selling your home, someone who can guide you through each step of the process. We want to set you up for selling success.
As per the contract, the buyer can do any inspections they would like in a set time period. 95% of home buyers request inspections on the home that they have under contract. Inspections may include a general home inspection.

In Wyoming, general home inspectors need not be licensed, but there are several that do have accreditation’s. Buyers can also schedule individual inspections by licensed professionals such as plumbing, electrical, heating, cooling, roof, structural, air quality, radon, termite, etc. You will be given at least 24 hours notice and most agents do try to schedule all of these inspections to happen at once within a short time window. Sometimes after the initial inspections, the buyers may do a few more specific inspections to focus on areas they see as potential problems.

Once home inspections are complete, the buyer submits an objection addendum to ask the seller to complete repairs before closing. When doing so, the seller is provided with the home inspection report, which will contain many items from very minor to the most important.

Now, the home inspector will find issues with every house, so don’t be alarmed if the inspection report is 30 to 50 pages long. Some are even longer. If it’s a 30-year-old home the inspector will find items that are not per code, but were within code at the time it was built. The seller will have time to review these objections and supporting reports and can decide whether they’ll complete some, all, or none of the requested repairs. This is another negotiation point in the process.

As an experienced agent, we will guide you through these decisions. Many times, once an area of concern has been brought to the seller’s attention, the item will need to be disclosed, and sometimes even needs to be repaired prior to closing, whether with this buyer or later with another. We want to set you up with selling success.
Today I wanna talk to you about buyer objections and buyer requested repairs.

What happens next when your house is under contract after buyer inspections have been completed? Per the terms of the contract, once inspections are complete, the buyer has some choices to make before the objection deadline. The buyer can choose to accept the property in as is condition, cancel the contract if they don’t like what they found during inspections, or they can ask the seller for repairs. And then negotiate with the seller as to what will actually be repaired, by whom, and at whose expense.

Be aware, if no repair requests or objection is made in writing and received by the listing agent prior to the objection deadline date and time that are specified in the contract, the buyer is accepting the property in as is condition. As we stated in a previous video, the time between the objection deadline and the resolution deadline, the period when the buyer asks for and you consider their inspection related repair requests is the second time during the transaction that you will negotiate with the buyer.

I usually suggest that the seller concentrate on correcting the more critical or safety issues first. Once we have the buyers objections, we will give bids on the items that need repaired. One thing I ask sellers to consider is that once we know about the issues with your home, we are required by law to disclose and potentially repair these issues if your house goes back on the market.

In most cases, it is a good idea to try to work through these issues with the buyer you already have under contract. Now this does not mean that I think you should do everything that is requested by the buyer. In most cases, I will encourage you to at least negotiate through the process.

I recently had a listing that ended up with quite a few issues that were revealed through the buyers inspections. The seller successfully negotiated the buyer’s request for repairs that initially totaled over 15,000 down to 8,200. They were able to keep their transaction together rather than putting their property back on the market and starting over. Of course, I will always do what you want to do when you’re ready to evaluate buyer requested repairs. We wanna set you up for selling success.
Appraisal. What is it and what are appraisal required repairs?

An appraisal is an unbiased opinion of value by a licensed professional appraiser, performed to help ensure a property’s contract price is appropriate for its condition, location, and specifications. The appraiser will take your property into consideration along with several appropriate comparable properties for the area, and then compares them, making standardized adjustments to account for differences in the properties in order to come up with an appraised value of the property.

During the appraisal, the appraiser also evaluates your property to make sure there are no issues that warrant repair or additional inspections. All loans have condition requirements of the house that is being purchased. Those requirements may vary by loan type. For example, if a buyer is getting an FHA or a VA loan on the property, the home cannot have any peeling paint, must have gutters, downspouts, extensions, as well as some other safety items, such as furnace and hot water heater that actually should already be present but sometimes aren’t.

Occasionally, additional inspections may be required such as a roofing inspection, structural inspection, etc. Typically, if any problems are identified, the buyer will ask the seller to take care of any of those deficiencies prior to closing. If what needs to be repaired is agreeable to you the seller, then those repairs must be completed at least several days before closing so the appraiser can go back to the home and sign off that their repairs have been done.

I realize this is a lot of information. That is why I am by your side to guide you through the entire process. Remember, we want to set you up for selling success.
The buyer’s final walk through is here. It’s the day before closing when your house will officially be sold. We are almost there, but first, the buyer’s final walk through.

The final walk through is an important step in the closing process. In most cases, the walk through is scheduled within 24 hours prior to the closing date. Although, there are some circumstances where it may not be until the day of closing.

Essentially, the final walk through is an opportunity for the buyer to ensure the house is in good condition and confirm that agreed upon repairs have been made and there are no new issues. The buyer and their agent will perform a thorough inspection of the property to ensure that everything is in order. They’re going to make sure that everything listed in the disclosures, that are staying, in fact, did stay with the home. Usually, only the buyer and the buyer’s agent attend the final walk through to give the buyer the freedom to inspect the property at their leisure. However, sometimes sellers are still moving out their last items.

To make sure this walk through goes off without a hitch, you should follow these tips.

Number one, make sure the house is clean. This means the real estate property has to be cleaned, swept, vacuumed, cleared of rubbish and clutter. The homeowner will likely do a deep clean after moving in but you should still make sure you aren’t leaving them a dirty home.

Number two, don’t remove attached items, unless they were excluded from the sale. Generally speaking, anything that’s attached to the home has to stay with the home after moving out. This includes items like light fixtures, water heater, HVAC systems, large appliances, like the oven range and refrigerator. And anything else that’s bolted, nailed down or mounted.

Number three, don’t leave anything buyers haven’t agreed to keep in the property. The buyers probably don’t want your old yearbooks or your old holiday decorations or your deer mount.

Number four, take care of any agreed upon repairs. It’s best for sellers to have the receipts detailing each project.

Number five, hold off on shutting off utilities so that the buyer has the opportunity to transfer them over upon the sale of the home. If you shut off the utilities, your home won’t have electric and gas for the final walk through, thus preventing the buyer from checking everything. A good rule of thumb is to leave the house in the same condition you’d expect when moving into a new home.

When selling your home, the best way to ensure you’re fully prepared for the final walk through, as the seller, is to read your purchase agreement. Terms of the agreement will lay out what you need to do for the home sale to be successful, in terms of the house’s conditions, repairs to be made and items to be left with the property. We want to set you up for selling success. Have a great day.
So when do I have to move out?

I get this question more often than you might think. Possession of a property is typically transferred at closing. If you are moving into another house and you have to be out of the house you live in, you have to have a plan.

How and when are you going to get from your current house to your next house? Most of the time when you close the sale, the buyer gets the keys right at the closing table. So unless some creative planning was negotiated upfront, you have to be out of your home at closing. If you haven’t arranged early occupancy on the next house, or arranged to stay at your house a couple of days longer, which can be difficult to arrange, and the seller of the house you’re buying doesn’t want the liability of you living in the house before closing, you are going to need a plan.

We typically suggest placing household goods into what is known as a pod or C-can. A C-can may also be known as a storage container, or even simply a shipping container. It’s a little more expensive than renting a storage unit, but it’s the simplest way to move because you just move everything into the pod, then the pod company comes and moves everything to the next house. Everything’s stored in one place, and you can move in one day, rather than having to load a moving truck, rent a storage unit for a few days, then take everything off the moving truck, then load up and move it again.

It’s important for you to have a plan of what you’re going to do, before you’re house goes under contract. And in our fast-paced market, this becomes even more important. We’ve got ideas to share with you, and as always, we want to set you up for selling success.
It is the day we’ve all been waiting for, closing day. What really happens on closing day?

This varies from state to state, but in Wyoming, when a property transaction is closed the transaction is complete. Wyoming is what is known in real estate as a table-funded state. This literally means that the transaction is funded at the closing table. The buyer’s lender funds the purchase by releasing the funds and the new mortgage takes effect immediately. The seller is then paid the seller proceeds. Typically, this is the amount of the purchase price, less any mortgages, liens, and expenses such as title, miscellaneous repairs, etc, which are paid on the closing. In a table-funded state, this is done.

The real estate closing is an important day for you as the home seller. On a closing day, you will transfer both legal and physical possession of the property to the buyer, fully pay off any mortgages or liens, and you’ll receive your sale proceeds. If you are using the proceeds from the sale of your property towards a new home purchase, which will occur in the same day or immediately thereafter, it is particularly important that the closing run smoothly. A closing is often called settlement because the seller, together with the buyer, the buyer’s lender, and the real estate agents and the seller’s lender, are settling up between one another and all of the other parties who have provided services or documents to the transaction.

In Wyoming closing typically takes place at the title company selected by the seller. The title company completes the title search and also provides settlement services, including preparing all related documents. Prior to the closing, the title company will send you a preliminary settlement statement to review, which details any seller-paid items as well as seller credits and seller proceeds.

Prior to heading out to the closing, you’ll want to make sure you have your current driver’s license or a state-issued picture ID or valid passport handy. And you will want to make sure you have all the keys and garage door openers with you. At this closing, the title company will take in all the documents, money, and other items required to close from the parties assigned to furnish them, pay out the money necessary to clear the title, pay off all of the previous lenders and lien holders, settle up any property taxes owed, and pay sales agents and other service providers.

This is the point where you will receive a check or wire for all proceeds from the sale after all the debts have been paid. If you are closing on a new home on the same day, the title company may write a check out to the different closing company or wire money to the closing office on your behalf for your new-home purchase.

Once everything has been signed and the checks have been handed over, it’s all done. Everyone can breathe a big sigh of relief and break out the champagne. The buyer is now the official and legal owner of the property, and may take immediate possession of the property unless the contract states that you could retain possession for a period of time. As your agent, I am here to guide you every step of the way throughout this entire process. We want to set you up for selling success.
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