Time can be the worst enemy for the seller of a home or property. Why? Because the law of the unintended, or better known as Murphy's Law, often rears it's ugly head.
The longer you wait for your buyer to close on your property, the more problems can and almost inevitably will come up. The buyer could lose his job, get a divorce, get laid off, or suffer from an unexpected pay cut or reduction in hours. These are common problems that I have seen many times. [Web Master's Note - The new federal health insurance law, also known as "Obamacare", redefined full time work as those who get more than 28 hours a week, as a result a great many people will experience a reduction in work hours].
I have seen, too many times, financing fall through because the buyer decided to purchase a new car on credit while waiting to close on your property, so the loan amount the buyer was qualified for before he bought the car dries up because said buyer now has car payments.
Calamities can also happen to the seller. How many homes that were for sale, or in the process of being sold, were damaged or destroyed by Hurricane Sandy? Thieves can break in to steal appliances or the pipes, which are sold to recyclers. The bottom line is that too many things can happen when you are waiting around for a closing date. Be smart, set a closing date that is realistic. If the buyer asks for more time you need to know why with no ambiguity. If the buyer asks for a delay you would be wise to ask for some additional non refundable earnest money, along with a letter from his lender explaining exactly why he is asking for an extension, and how long it will take for the lender to get everything the buyer needs to close the deal.
If you are not a realtor and your trying to sell the property on your own, do your homework up front and be very careful in your negotiations. Make certain that you know what you are doing. Legal issues are just the first in a string of problems that can manifest themselves. Be smart, if you are not legitimately confident in what you are doing find a good realtor that has some years of experience to get the house sold and closed for you. Remember selling the house is merely a small part of the process, getting to and completing a legal closing should not be left to guesswork.
Once you have a successful closing and you legally own the home, you can start decorating.
Click here for photos ideas on decorating.
Written by: Lea France, Sales Representative at Fannie Mae