- Who picks which escrow and title company will handle our closing?
It is customary for the seller to choose escrow and title but like most of the contract terms, it is negotiable.
- Where and what time will the closing be held?
In California, the seller and buyer do not need nor is it customary to sit down at a table and “close”. The normal course to close is for the buyer(s) to sign loan documents with a licensed notary at escrow or place of their choosing. The seller will sign the deed. Escrow will submit the file to “record” with San Diego County. Once escrow and / or title receive “confirmation” of recording, the transaction has officially and successfully closed.
- Do I have to attend the closing?
No. You mail the closing documents prior to closing for signature (See answer #2 above for details)
- Does my spouse need to be present at the closing?
If your spouse is on the title for the home, yes he/she will also need to sign documents to close the transaction.
- We have a home warranty contract. Would the buyers be interested in this?
Find out if the contract is assumable. If it is, determine what monetary compensation you would want for the remainder of the yearly contract. Provide this information to your real estate agent.
- How do we know when the buyer has mortgage approval?
Per the contract, the lender has a specified number of days from contract date to give the selling agent a loan commitment letter. The Selling Agent will then fax the letter to the Listing Agent.
- Should I be present during the home inspection?
It’s advisable that the seller not be present for the home inspection. During the inspection, the inspector needs to communicate directly with the buyers and it may be awkward if the seller is present.
- Can I get a copy of the home inspection report?
Maybe. You would need to ask for a copy from the buyer(s) or buyer’s agent. The buyers have paid for the home inspection and the report so technically they own it and are not required to share it with the seller(s).
- If there are defects found by the home inspector, can I make all the repairs myself?
Discuss each item that needs repairs with your real estate agent. He/she will advise you which items you can fix yourself and those items you need to hire a licensed professional to repair. Often times this is addressed in writing from the buyer(s) on a “repair request” form.
- Can I pay for some of the home repairs from the proceeds I’ll get at closing?
Yes. Make sure your real estate agent has copies of the invoices and he/she will send them to the title company.
- When will the lock box be removed? Usually the lock box isn’t removed until 1-2 days before closing and after the final walk through is completed.
- The buyers are asking if they can move some boxes into the house prior to closing. Should I allow them to?
It’s your decision but it’s advisable to not allow buyers, or any of their belongings, to move into the house before closing. If the house is vacant before closing, you may choose to allow them to move some boxes into the garage with the interior door to the inside of the house locked. Your real estate agent should advise you on this.
- Do I need to be present for the final walk through?
No. The buyer(s) and the buyer’s agent will do the final walk through once you have completely moved out of house. The final walk through is usually done 1-5 days prior to closing.
- Do we need to have our house and carpeting professionally cleaned when we move out?
Your real estate agent will advise you if the contract specifies that your carpeting must be professionally cleaned. It would be courteous to do a general cleaning and to clean your kitchen appliances. Use your best judgment.
So how do you get started?
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