Paperwork For Selling A House Without A Realtor

by | Apr 9, 2024

This guide is designed to give homeowners the knowledge and tools needed to navigate the sale process independently, saving on commission fees and gaining more control over the transaction.

Seller Paperwork

Disclosure Statements

Disclosure statements inform buyers of what uniquities the buyers know about the property and neighborhood. These could include roof leaks, leaky pipes, mold, or other hazardous conditions.

Required Disclosures In Massachusetts:

  • Statement of Property Condition
  • Massachusetts Lead Paint Disclosure– as provided under Massachusetts Lead Paint Statute (Section 197a)
  • Septic System Presence on the Property
Sales Agreement

A sales agreement is a legally binding contract between a seller and a buyer that outlines the terms and conditions of the property sale. For the seller, it specifies the obligations to transfer the property’s title and ensures they receive the agreed-upon payment. Both parties rely on this document to protect their interests, ensuring a clear understanding of the responsibilities and expectations involved in the transaction.

Affidavit Of Title

An affidavit of title declares that the buyer has clear ownership of the property and the right to sell it. It’s a sworn statement that there are no liens, disputes, or undisclosed heirs that could affect the title.

For the buyer, it assures that the property’s title is free from issues that could jeopardize their ownership. It’s a crucial part of the closing process, giving both parties confidence in the legitimacy and smooth transfer of the property’s title.

Deed

A signed deed is a legal document that transfers property ownership from the seller to the buyer. For the seller, it signifies the formal relinquishment of their rights to the property.

For the buyer, it serves as proof of ownership and legal title. The deed typically includes details such as the property description, the parties’ names, and any conditions or warranties.

Once signed by both parties and notarized, the deed is recorded with the local government, ensuring the transaction is public record and legally binding. This process solidifies the buyer’s ownership and the seller’s release of the property.

Purchase Agreement

A purchase agreement is a binding contract between a seller and a buyer outlining the terms of a property sale. For the seller, it details their obligations, such as providing clear title and adhering to agreed-upon conditions. For the buyer, it specifies the purchase price, financing terms, and contingencies like inspections or obtaining a mortgage.

This agreement serves as a roadmap for the transaction, outlining each party’s responsibilities and the steps to closing. It’s a crucial document that ensures both parties are clear on the terms and conditions of the sale before finalizing the deal.

Escrow Agreement

An escrow agreement is a contract where a neutral third party, called an escrow agent, holds funds or documents on behalf of the buyer and seller until specific conditions are met.

For the seller, it provides assurance that the buyer is committed and has the necessary funds.

For the buyer, it ensures that the property title and other important documents are secure until the transaction is finalized. The escrow agreement outlines the terms and conditions that must be fulfilled before the escrow agent releases the funds or documents, facilitating a smooth and secure transfer of ownership.

Mortgage Payoff Statement

A mortgage payoff statement is a document provided by the lender that outlines the exact amount needed to pay off the remaining balance of a mortgage at a specific date. When selling a home, this statement is crucial because it ensures that the mortgage is fully paid off and the lien on the property can be released, allowing for a clear transfer of title to the buyer.

Warranties & Manuals

Manuals and warranty documents provide valuable information about the operation, maintenance, and warranty coverage of appliances such as refrigerators, ovens, washers, dryers, and HVAC systems.

Disclosing this information helps the buyer understand how to properly use and care for the appliances, and it can also be a selling point if the warranties are still valid. Providing these documents can build trust with the buyer and potentially prevent disputes or misunderstandings about the condition and functionality of the appliances after the sale.

Buyer Paperwork

It’s a good idea to have an idea of the paperwork involved in buying a house.

 

Income Verification

Income verification is required when buying a home to ensure that the buyer has a stable and sufficient income to afford the mortgage payments. It involves providing documents such as pay stubs, tax returns, and employment verification to the lender.

This process helps the lender assess the buyer’s financial health and determine their ability to repay the loan. It also protects the buyer from overextending themselves financially. By verifying income, lenders can calculate the buyer’s debt-to-income ratio, a key factor in approving a mortgage. Ultimately, income verification contributes to a responsible lending process and promotes long-term financial stability for the buyer.

Inspection Report

A home inspection report is a detailed assessment of a property’s condition. For the buyer, it provides an in-depth analysis of the home’s structure, systems, and components, helping them make an informed decision about the purchase.

It’s not a legal requirement for buyers to get a home inspection report, but it’s highly recommended. It can reveal hidden problems, potentially saving the buyer from costly repairs in the future and providing leverage for negotiating the purchase price or repair terms.

Appraisal Report

An appraisal is a professional assessment of a property’s market value. For the seller, it helps determine the listing price and ensures the property is priced appropriately.

For the buyer, lenders often require them to secure a mortgage, ensuring that the loan amount does not exceed the property’s value. It objectively evaluates the property’s worth, considering factors such as location, condition, and recent sales of comparable properties. If you’re buying a home without financing, it is highly recommended for buyers to protect their investment with an appraisal.

Closing Disclosure

A closing disclosure is a detailed document provided by a mortgage lender outlining the final terms of the loan. This includes interest rates, monthly payments, and closing costs.

Buyers obtaining a mortgage must receive a closing disclosure at least three days before closing. This document allows them to review and confirm the terms of their loan and ensures transparency and accuracy in the transaction.

Final Closing/Settlement Statement

A final closing statement, also known as a settlement statement or HUD-1, is a comprehensive document provided at the closing of a property transaction.

For the seller, it details the amounts credited to them, including the purchase price and any adjustments.

For the buyer, it itemizes the costs associated with the purchase, such as lender fees, title insurance, and escrow payments. The statement ensures both parties understand the financial aspects of the deal, including the final amount owed by the buyer and the net proceeds received by the seller. It’s a crucial document for accurately closing the transaction and transferring ownership.

Offer

An offer is a formal proposal by a potential buyer to purchase a property at a specified price and under certain conditions. It typically includes details such as the offer price, financing terms, and contingencies like home inspections or appraisals.

An offer becomes legally binding when the seller accepts it, and both parties sign a purchase agreement.

The buyer, often with the assistance of a real estate agent, prepares a written offer. The offer is formally submitted to the seller or the seller’s agent. This is usually done through the buyer’s real estate agent, who communicates with the seller’s agent.

FSBO Paperwork

Selling your house without a real estate agent in California can save you from paying an average of $20,194 in realtor commission. It can also give you more control over your home sale than you might have sold with an agent. 

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Elie Deglaoui - Author

Author

Elie Deglaoui

Elie is our office admin who handles all our day-to-day tasks and makes sure we always stay on track. He brings his love of music and sports into the office everyday to always liven up the environment. His outgoing personality makes it easy and fun for him to talk to homeowners, homebuyers, and everyone in between.

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