Congrats on Accepting an Offer!!
Here Are a Few Frequently Asked Question About What to Expect:
Q: Will my home still be on the market?
A: Yes, your home may still be shown to prospective buyers and you may accept additional offers as backup offers.
Q: I’m nervous about the home inspection. What can I expect?
A: The home inspection: The buyer has the right to have the home inspected and we want them to know what they are buying. Please don’t be offended if the inspector finds issues – it’s their job! They will find SOMETHING. Excluding major items, such as roof leaks, termite infestations, or heating failures, most inspection items are minor and generally cost a few hundred dollars to repair.
Q: Do I need to keep the utilities on?
A: The utilities MUST be kept on until the close of escrow. We will confirm this date with you before the scheduled close of escrow date. Once we have confirmed the close of escrow, you can provide the utility companies with the date financial responsibility should be taken out of your name.
Q: Do I have to use licensed contractors for inspection repairs?
A: If any repairs have been negotiated with the buyer, it is your responsibility to have the repairs completed by competent service providers. Things such as electrical repairs, HVAC repairs and roof repairs are best done by licensed contractors. Make sure you get a receipt from each provider detailing the work performed, as copies of the invoices and receipts for work completed must be provided to the title company at least 3 days before closing.
Q: I received a package from the Title and Escrow Company. What is this?
A: This “Seller Packet” is essential to the closing process. Please fill it out to the best of your ability and return it to the Escrow Company ASAP. This is how they obtain your final mortgage payoff, as well as other important information they need to prepare for closing. If you have any questions about the packet, please call the Escrow company that mailed it to you and they can walk you through the steps.
Q: When is the appraisal done?
A: The buyer’s lender will schedule the appraisal on your property, usually after the inspection period is complete and satisfied. The appraiser will need to access your home in order to complete the appraisal, they will call and schedule ahead of time. We will contact the buyer’s agent and lender to confirm when the appraisal is complete, that the value is sufficient, and we will report back to you as soon as we know.
Q: When can we start packing?
A: While you can pack anytime you choose, we recommend that you not make any major changes, nor purchase another home without a home sale contingency until we’ve cleared the first two hurdles: Inspection/due diligence period and the buyer’s loan being approved, and that last item can’t be done until appraisal is complete and reviewed by lender’s underwriter.
Q: The closing date is close to the same date my mortgage payment is due. Can I skip that payment?
A: We HIGHLY recommend you make your mortgage payments on time, even when closing is nearby. There can be last minute issues that arise that can delay closing for one reason or another and you do not want to damage your credit by making a late house payment. It’s worth paying your mortgage payment on-time. You will get a refund check from the mortgage company, if there is an overage paid.
Q: We have a schedule appointment to sign papers at Escrow. Is that the same day as closing?
A: Signing your closing paperwork is different than the “closing date”. In Washington State, both parties sign paperwork with the Escrow Agent individually. The Escrow Agent sends the buyer’s signed documents back to their lender for a final review. Once the lender has their final review, they will wire the purchase funds to the Escrow Department. The Escrow Department will collect the final package to be delivered to the county court house to record the ownership transfer. This is the true closing date. Possession date is usually on the closing date, unless otherwise agreed. Typically, you have until 9pm on the date of closing to be completely out of the home and the buyer’s will obtain access.
Q: How long does it take for money to be transferred? How does that get disbursed?
A: Funds get disbursed within one business day after the sale is recorded at the County, usually scheduled to occur by 5 p.m. on [closing date]. When we get to the point of signing closing documents you will be given the option to receive your funds by check or wire. You will want to bring your checking account info with you for a wire (note: there may be a fee from your bank in order to receive a wire). Wired funds are immediately available where as a check might be held by your financial institution for 5-7 business days.