Buyers saw your Havasu house, fell in love, and put in an offer. Congratulations! Hold on a minute. You’ve heard the expression “don’t count your chickens before they hatch”. Well, don’t count your money before you close. As of the latest statistics, almost 4% of homes fail to close. The reasons why vary. While you can’t control the buyer’s end of the deal, you do have some control over your side. Here’s a list of what sellers must do (on their end) to ensure escrow closes.
What Sellers Must Do to Ensure Escrow Closes
Your Sales Price
Before you even list your property on the Havasu market, carefully consider your price. Why? First of all, you want buyers to see it. Pricing too high turns many buyers away before they even step inside. But, more importantly, you need your price to pass the appraisal portion of the sale process. Otherwise, the bank won’t approve a mortgage loan for your buyer. That’s why it makes my list of tried and true home selling tips.
Pricing your home above its appraised value means one of three things. One, your buyer needs to come up with more money to cover the difference between the appraised value and the sale price. Two, you must lower your price. Or three, the buyer walks away from the deal altogether. Talk to your Lake Havasu REALTOR® about a reasonable sale price. Paying for an appraisal before you list could prove valuable as well.
At some point during the home selling process, banks run a title search of the property in question. This is when things like liens show up. You may not even be aware that a company did this. Run a title search before you list to check for liens. Sometimes, it takes just a moment of your time to clarify payment of the debt. Other times, it takes weeks or even months. To avoid a delay or cancellation of escrow, perform a title search before you list. This allows you time to clear up any issues that might arise.
By law, before you close, you must disclose. In other words, you must fill out a Seller’s Property Disclosure Statement (aka “Spuds”). On this form, you tell the seller about any structural issues you either know about from personal experience or what a previous owner told you before you bought your home. If you leave something out, a buyer could walk away from the deal or come back later and sue you for damages. Your real estate agent should be able to answer any questions you have when filling out the form.
Keep an Open Mind
Be willing to negotiate. Standing fast to a particular price even when an inspection reveals issues could kill your sale. Compromise helps.
The Contingency Factor
Keep contingencies to a minimum. The fewer contingencies to meet, the less likely a property falls out of escrow. For example, two buyers put in offers on your Havasu home. One buyer offered $5000 over asking. However, they need to sell their home first in order to be approved for a loan, want you to resurface the pool, and request that you throw in your patio furniture. The second buyer offered $2000 below asking, doesn’t need to sell their home, already received approval for financing, and asks for nothing more than a home inspection and appraisal. You might want to give the lower offer some serious consideration.
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