We are coming down to the wire on the sale of your home. Besides changing your address, here some very important items you need to be made aware of.
- Unless there is rent back agreement you need to be completely ‘OUT’ of the property at the time of closing. You cannot delay your move out unless the buyers have agreed to that prior and the attorneys have documented it (usually requires holding back money until you vacate). Make sure your movers know you have to be out, or your closing could be delayed costing you money.
- Before vacating the property make sure all personal items, furniture and trash have been removed. The crawl spaces, attic and the garage all must be clear of junk. Get rid of trash weeks before the closing. If the property is dirty or trash is left the Buyers have the right to delay closing until you clean it up. We have seen sellers pay hundreds of dollars at closing to Got Junk for the removal of items left at the curb they should have tossed prior.
- Utilities must be working for the final walk-through and the day of closing,The contract states the furnace, A/C, appliances, sump pump, toilets etc. must still be shown to be ‘working’. If they cannot be tested at the final walk through – they are not ‘working’ and can lead to delays in closing until they are back on. If utilities are off – 1) you will not close, 2) you will have to pay to have the utilities turned back on. Remember, until closing it’s still your place! Closing delays happen – and until it closes things must ‘work’. Don’t try to save a few dollars and risk having to turn it all back on again.
- Make sure to provide your attorney with copies of receipts for all repairs performed on your property. If the repairs involve electrical, plumbing, heating/AC or contract work make sure you hire licensed and reputable professionals. Today’s finicky buyers do not usually approve of do-it-yourself repairs that do not come with some type of warranty.
- Talk to your attorney about the state, county and any city transfer fees you are responsible for. Check your city’s website to see if there are any final online documents you need to complete and for water & waste transfers. Some cities require proof of final payment, if so, get a receipt. Make sure payment and pick-up for transfer stamps is arranged for by you, or your Attorney’s office or their title company. We cannot make these arrangements for you.
- One week prior to closing contact your utilities for ‘switching’ over the day of closing – but DO NOT TURN THEM OFF. Have the new buyer’s names handy for calls to your utilities (it’s on the contract). Nicor Gas (888) 642-6748 www.nicor.com. ComEd (800) 334-7661 www.ComEd.com. Contact your city too. Remember – utilities must be working the day of closing.
- If you have an HOA make sure you have a ‘Letter of Closing’ (assessments are up-to-date).
- If you will be signing documents for someone, or they are doing it for you – make sure your attorney knows in advance. Often this requires a notarized letter indicating special POA.
- Review the closing statement with your attorney. Attorneys often have multiple files going at any time and mistakes can happen.
- When we have a firm Clear To Close (CTC) and/or a closing date and time set in stone – your attorney will notify you.
- The buyers will do a walk-through with their Realtor usually the evening before or the morning of the closing. You don’t have to be totally ‘out’ until the actual closing, but you need to be close to finishing. Be ready for the walk-through. When you finally leave the place must be broom clean. No trash, dust bunnies, old lamps etc.
- We suggest you leave a set of keys and the garage remotes with your Attorney. If there are several extra keys – we suggest you take one ‘copy’ with you ‘just in case’. After the property closes you can toss it in the recycle bin. Leave a note with the garage access code as well. Unlock all screen doors.
- Stay in touch with your attorney. They know things well before we do. Dates, times, locations and specifics of closings change at the last minute. If there is a delay for any reason you need to contact your utilities immediately to keep service going. You do not want the sump pump to stop working, pipes to freeze or have to turn the utilities back on.
- Make sure your Attorney has a way of reaching you during the closing.
If you have any questions call or email your Realstar agent.