Once you have chosen your Realtor, it is time to begin the process of getting your home listed for sale. There are a number of required legal documents you will work through with your Realtor and many decisions to be made. Here is an overview of your Listing Contract and the accompanying documents you will need to get your listing live!
The Listing Contract:
This is the most basic (and important) of the documents you will cover with your Realtor. There are many sections of a listing contract contain standard legal language, and it is important that you go through these with your Realtor until you understand them. But the parts that will be unique to your contract will require the following pieces of information:
- Listing Price
- Timeline terms of the contract (6 months is a typical contract term)
- The date you wish to go “active” for sale
- The schedule for giving possession of the home to a buyer
- What items you will include in the sale (or exclude)
- Whether you are you willing to make a contribution of funds to buyer’s closing costs
- The types of financing you will consider from interested buyers
- Issues related to Limited (or Dual) Agency
- Home Warranty
- Permission to place a lockbox on your property, and what type of box you will allow
- Special instructions and any further conditions you wish to add
- Commissions and fees for Realtors
All of these items are important and you have options, but this is the time when you and your Realtor need to agree on a plan for listing your home. Be honest and clear about your expectations, but ask questions too. This is another place where all Realtors are not the same. As an example, Watson Concierge Realty Group only uses state of the art SentriLock lockboxes. These allow us to limit access to only card-carrying members of MIBOR (Metropolitan Indiana Board or Realtors). Anyone who uses our keycard entry will be recorded, both entry and exit time) so we know who and how long for anyone entering your home. We can, with your permission, also provide one-day codes to contractors you have commissioned to work in your home, but their access code won’t work if they come back another time. This provides maximum security for your home during the listing period. Contrast this to a combination lock – everyone who has shown a home with a combo lock could come back later and enter again. Safety during the showing season is a legitimate concern and the SentriLock box is a real step up in your protection. But not everyone uses these because they cost more than an old fashioned combination lock.
What Other Documents Will You Have to Sign to List Your House?
There may also be agency forms unique to the brokerage you work with. At Century 21, we will also have you sign a General Office Policy and a Consumer Acknowledgement Form (these discuss Limited Agency, Home Warranties, and Internal promises we make to our clients).
Next, you will have to fill our a Seller’s Disclosure form which is a state required form that documents basic facts about your house right now. This form is really important and you are legally bound to disclose any current issues on this form. Also, if your house was built before 1978 you will be required to fill out a Lead-Based Paint Disclosure form. Your Realtor should walk you through these forms at the time of listing- we require these before we will make a listing “live.”
At the listing appointment, Watson Concierge Realty Group will also present to you, and ask you to sign, an Estimated Net Proceeds Sheet. On this page we will present you with 3 scenarios- 3 price points that we consider possible for your home sale. For each we will show you what your associated costs are estimated to be- items like closing fee, tax pro-ration, Realtor fees, Title Company fees, and mortgage payoff amounts if you still owe money on your house. This provides you with a true, best estimate projection of your walk away profit. There will be some variability as all factors aren’t yet known, but this is at least a helpful starting point for you to plan what you may get out of your home sale.
Determining and Documenting Your Showing Instructions:
Finally, you will work with your Realtor on a form that describes how buyers will ask to find and see your home. Are there times you cannot have the house shown? Can our Centralized Showing Service text you to confirm appointments? Do you give permission for a yard sign and for your listing to be featured in on-line sites? How far ahead will you need to know if someone wants to see the home? Our advice is always to be as ready and willing to show as possible, but if there are unavoidable limits we are best served to get them documented right away.
If you would like more information about the listing documents, or have general questions about Real Estate, please reach out to us. We would be glad to speak with you: