As the seller of a property, you might wonder what happens from the time you accept an offer until it is time to hand over the keys to your buyer. Here is an idea of what you can expect and what is happening behind the scenes of the process:
- Inspections: The buyer of your property will schedule appointments with the appropriate inspectors to perform the inspections indicated on your contract.
- Earnest Money: This is also sometimes called “good faith” money. It is an amount of money the buyer promises to pay in advance once their offer is accepted. The buyer is telling the seller, by depositing a portion of money upfront, the buyer “earnestly” and “in good faith” intends to purchase the property. This amount is typically deposited with the buyer’s broker and is credited toward the purchase price.
- City/County Point of Sale: Certain city and county ordinances require homeowners to have a point of sale inspection conducted in order to sell their property. Your property cannot transfer ownership if it is required and not completed.
- Title and Escrow: An examination of title will be ordered to verify if there are any liens or encumbrances on your property. As a seller, it is your obligation to provide clear and marketable title to a buyer. The title company serves as a neutral third party who will also be assisting you during the closing period.
- Loan Application: Even though your buyer may be preapproved for a mortgage loan, the buyer will still have to meet with their loan originator and make their application official.
- Loan Processing: Once the application is official, the buyer’s file will move to the processing department. The processor will collect any additional documents needed to complete the file and verify the information given by the buyer.
- Appraisal: The lender requires an appraisal be done of the property to make certain that the value of the home is that of the contract selling price.
- Underwriting: The completed appraisal, along with the buyer’s credit file, will be handed off to the lender’s underwriter. The underwriter is the person who reviews the file and determines whether or not a buyer is qualified to obtain a loan.
- Loan Approval: Upon final review and loan approval, a “clear to close” is issued and the file will be moved to the closing department.
- Closing: When the closing department receives the file, they will then communicate with the title company to arrange appointments for you and the buyer(s) to sign your closing documents.
- Utilities and Key Exchange: When closing appointments are set and a firm date for title transfer is established, discussion of utility transfer and key exchange will take place based on your possession date.
- Title Transfer: This is the day the deed is recorded and official transfer of ownership occurs.
This entire process can take up to an average of 45 days. It is good to keep in mind that all home purchases have many variables that determine the length of the home buying process and that each buyer experience is unique. The Vaccaro Team will be there to assist you every step of the way to ensure that your home buying experience is the best it can be!