What To Do and Not To Do After Your Home Sells. A Home sellers guide to courtesy and care after a home sells.
When driving in the neighborhood yesterday I noticed the home owner of a recently sold home was out front watering the grass, trimming the bushes and washing the windows.
I was so proud of this gentleman.
Although you would think his activities were that of a normal homeowner on a sunny summer day. But this, to me as a Realtor was much more then that.
Quite often there is a few weeks, to even months from the time a home is sold firm and when it in fact closes. ** see definitions at the end of this post
The reason for my excitement was that even though this home had sold, this homeowner was still maintaining the property as if it were his own.
You would not believe the amount of people out there that do not do this. In fact, some even go the complete opposite and borderline neglect their homes. Particularly when it comes to lawn maintenance, gardening or something as simple as cleaning the windows or walk ways. Which to me, is completely insane. But it is done.
Essentially the home is no longer this owners home. But there is something to be said about taking pride in it while you still hold the ownership as well, the main thing missing here is the new buyer is expecting to move in to the home they viewed on the day they bought it. Not with overgrown bushes, dead grass and dirty windows.
As a real estate agent, I always ensure that my home seller clients are aware of some important things to keep in mind and to do between their homes firm sale and closing dates.
- Maintain the home the same way you always have right up to the last day
Not only as a courtesy but to also protect you from any further litigation or liability. You as a home seller are responsible for leaving the home to the new buyer in the condition it was in on the day they bought it. This also means that if anything happens to the integrity of the home by no fault of yours you are still responsible for it’s repair or replacement. For example: the furnace dies in between the firm and closing date. You the homeowner must replace or repair it as the buyer purchased a home with a working furnace.
2. Keep things clean and leave them clean for the home buyer
You would be shocked at the amount of calls we receive as real estate agents after or on closing day from home buyers completely grossed out by the condition of the appliances. Food spills, unknown “growth” and things left behind are the most common complaints. Another is the overall condition of the home on closing day. Not cleaned or broom swept. In fact FILTHY! We get it, movers have muddy shoes and moving is stressful. Just remember though, the home buyer is just as stressed out as you are and we are pretty sure you would not want the home you are moving to in the same condition.
3. Go the extra mile.
Take extra care of everything. Even if you weren’t the best at maintaining your home before you sold it. Now is the time to do this. Clean filters, replace light bulbs do it all. The tiny things matter and everyone wants a smooth transition.
Some of you may be reading this and thinking that we are completely insane. Why would any one have to be told this. Well, you would be very surprised to know how common this is.
That is why on my Sunday afternoon drive I could have ran out of the car and hugged the man lovingly caring for a home he had sold.
It truly is the little things…
Do you have questions about selling your home? Reach Out!
TWO DEFINITIONS TO MAKE THIS EASIER TO UNDERSTAND
Sold Firm Date: This is the day an offer is either accepted with no conditions or the day the conditions have been removed and the deal is FIRM. The home is now officially sold.
Closing Date: This is the day the transaction closes. The keys change hands and the new owners take over.