3 Important Issues to address with your Realtor when selling your home
There’s nothing exciting or funny about this post… Just some good advice to ensure that your transaction goes smoothly. The last thing you’d want is to go through the time (and expense on several peoples’ parts) of listing your home, getting an offer and progressing through escrow, only to find out that there’s a problem on your title that kills the deal!
Here are the key points from an article I recently read (click here for the full article).
1. Existing Mortgage. How much is left on your note? Are you current on payments? All of my clients complete an Existing Mortgage Request form which is sent to their bank to confirm amounts. Sometimes people don’t get them back to me in a timely manner. That’s a clue that something may be wrong. While it’s perfectly understandable to feel reluctant about telling anyone that you’ve fallen behind in your mortgage payments, it’s not something you can keep hidden. The bank is going to be involved in the Closing process. Title cannot be transferred until the lender releases it. If this is something you’re dealing with, tell your agent immediately to find out what options may be available to you. Waiting often reduces your options.
2. Title. Whose name is on the title to the property? If you are an officer of a corporation that owns the property, we’re going to need to see the articles of incorporation and the document showing you as an officer who is authorized to sign legal documents in the name of the corporation. This also goes for LLC’s, trusts, POA’s, etc. If you have changed your name, we need to see the marriage certificate or other legal document(s) showing that you are the same person as is named on title. You cannot legally sell real estate you do not own.
3. Liens. Title cannot be transferred when there is a lien against the property. If someone has filed a lien against the property, the homeowner cannot sell it until the lien holder is satisfied. If you need the money from the sale to pay the lien holder, documents showing that X amount will go to the lien holder at Closing will need to be put in place before Closing. The lien holder will have to agree, in writing, to accept monies at Closing.
Errors on title are best found early on so that they can be corrected before we have a contract on the property. Sometimes it can be as simple as sending a Death Certificate to the County Recorder to remove a deceased spouse’s name from the title. Other situations are more difficult but most can be dealt with in a reasonable amount of time.
Whatever the situation, the best course of action is to tell your agent up front so that they can work with you on resolving the issue.
If you’re ready to sell your home in Encino, Tarzana, Sherman Oaks, Studio City… anywhere in the San Fernando Valley, give me a call at (310)926-2386 or contact me through this website.