Dana Claflin - ERA Key Realty Services



Posted by Dana Claflin on 10/15/2020

Selling a home takes patience. Especially when you’re balancing your time between settling into your new home, and keeping up with your work and family life. So, when you’ve finally gotten to the point of accepting an offer on your home, you’ll probably breathe a sigh of relief--and you should!  However, there are still a few more things that will need to happen and a couple of things to consider before closing the deal on your home sale.

Contingencies on the purchase contract

A purchase contract typically includes contingency clauses that are designed to protect the interests of both the buyer and the seller. These clauses mean that the contract is contingent upon the actions being completed before it can be legally valid.

There are three main contingencies that will likely be included in the purchase contract before closing--inspection, financing, and appraisal.

Inspection contingency

The inspection contingency allows the buyer to have the home inspected by a professional before closing (the time should be specified within the contract, but the inspection should usually occur no more than two weeks after you accept the offer). A home inspection lets the buyer know what to expect in terms of repairs that the home needs now or will need in the near future.

Financing contingency

Since the vast majority of buyers will be purchasing their home through a loan, a financing contingency is included to allow the buyer time to secure their mortgage. Getting pre-qualified and pre-approved makes this process easier, but the buyer will still have to finalize and close on their mortgage before their financing is official.

This clause exists to protect the buyer in the event that their mortgage application is denied, ensuring that they aren’t penalized.

Appraisal contingency

The third contingency most often found in purchase contracts is a home appraisal. The buyer will order an appraisal and then the appraiser will reach out to you to find a day to come and value your home.

If the home is then appraised at the amount agreed upon in your contract, this contingency is met. However, if the appraisal comes up lower than the purchase amount, the buyer can renegotiate the price.

Walkthrough and closing

Once the appraisal and inspection have been met and financing secured, the buyer will have a chance to do a final walkthrough of your home. The walkthrough usually occurs no more than two days prior to closing on the sale. A walkthrough allows the buyer view the home one last time to ensure that the condition of the home hasn’t drastically changed since the home was inspected or appraised. So, make sure the buyer is aware of any changes you planned to make to the home before closing.

Now you’re ready to close on your home sale. You’ll receive a disclosure form to review (read it carefully!) and sign. Once closing is complete, ownership of the home is officially transferred to the buyer.

While the closing process does include several steps, it’s important to be available and cooperative along the way to ensure a smooth sale and transition into your new home.





Posted by Dana Claflin on 9/24/2020

If you intend to sell your home, you should develop a plan. That way, you can identify any potential home selling hurdles and take steps to address such issues before they escalate.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you execute a house selling plan to perfection.

1. Establish a Timeline

You know you want to sell your home, but it is important to understand that it may take several days, weeks or months to complete the house selling cycle. Fortunately, if you establish a home selling timeline, you can set realistic expectations for the property selling journey.

Think about how long you will need to relocate from your current residence to a new one. For instance, if you need to pack up your personal belongings, you should account for this factor as you develop your home selling timeline.

When it comes to selling a house, it generally is a good idea to give yourself as much time as you can. Remember, if you have sufficient time to clean your residence and upgrade your house's curb appeal, you may be able to speed up the property selling cycle.

2. Remain Flexible

Although you may devote significant time and resources to craft an effective home selling strategy, you need to keep in mind that problems may arise during the property selling journey. In some instances, these issues may be unavoidable. However, if you maintain flexibility, you can address any home selling issues and prevent them from slowing down or stopping a house sale.

If you encounter a problem during the home selling journey, try not to stress about it. Conversely, tackle a home selling issue head-on, and you can overcome this problem without delay.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

If you are unsure about how to plan for the home selling journey, you can always hire a real estate agent. Because if you have a real estate agent at your side, you can receive expert guidance at each stage of the house selling cycle.

A real estate agent knows what it takes to sell a residence, regardless of the current housing market's conditions. First, he or she will meet with you, learn about your home selling goals and help you plan accordingly. And when you have a home selling strategy in place, your real estate agent will help you put this plan into action.

As you execute a home selling plan, a real estate agent is ready to provide tips and recommendations as well. If you ever have concerns or questions as you navigate the home selling journey, a real estate agent will respond to them immediately.

For those want to streamline the home selling journey, it helps to craft a plan. Thanks to the aforementioned tips, you can create a first-rate home selling strategy. And as a result, you can use a home selling plan to promote your residence to buyers and maximize your house sale earnings.





Posted by Dana Claflin on 5/7/2020

A home seller may face a variety of dilemmas as he or she tries to get the best price for a residence. However, a seller who prepares for potential problems may be better equipped than others to enjoy a fast, profitable property selling experience.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you get ready for potential home selling dilemmas.

1. Upgrade Your Residence

You may believe your residence will sell quickly, but the housing market offers no guarantees. Fortunately, if you allocate time and resources to upgrade your residence, you could differentiate your home from comparable houses in your city or town.

Removing clutter will make it easy for you to show off the true size of your home's interior to prospective buyers. Furthermore, you should clean each room of your home. If necessary, you may want to hire a professional home cleaning company too.

Don't forget to trim the hedges, mow the front lawn, repair cracked or damaged siding and perform other home exterior upgrades, either. If your home boasts amazing curb appeal, potential buyers may fall in love with your residence as soon as they see it.

2. Establish a Competitive Initial Asking Price for Your Home

If your home's initial asking price is too high, you risk alienating potential buyers. But if you analyze the real estate market closely, you can use housing sector data to establish a competitive initial home asking price.

Take a look at the prices of recently sold houses in your city or town, as well as the prices of available residences that are comparable to your own. This information provides a glimpse into the current state of the housing market and can help you determine how to price your residence.

It may be beneficial to conduct a home appraisal as well. In fact, a home appraisal report includes a property valuation that you can use to set a competitive initial asking price for your residence.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent understands what it takes to sell a home in any housing sector, at any time. As such, he or she can offer expert guidance to help you identify and overcome home selling dilemmas.

Oftentimes, a real estate agent will meet with you, find out why you want to sell your house and craft a personalized home selling strategy for you. He or she next will list your residence and promote it to prospective buyers. And if you receive an offer to purchase your house, a real estate agent will help you determine how to proceed with this proposal.

A real estate agent also is ready to provide immediate responses to your home selling concerns and questions. That way, you can receive plenty of support as you navigate the home selling journey.

Ready to add your house to the real estate market? Use the aforementioned tips, and you should have no trouble addressing potential home selling dilemmas and enjoying a seamless property selling experience.





Posted by Dana Claflin on 12/19/2019

Photo by Acharaporn Kamornboonyarush from Pexels

In a nutshell, if you have owned a home for five years and lived in it for at least two out of five years, or if you’ve owned the house for two years and lived in it the entire time, a single person has a $250,000 tax exemption. If you are married, as a couple, you have a $500,000 exemption. Any gains over those amounts are taxable. You should always discuss the sale of your home with a tax attorney, especially if you used the house for business or rented it out, as you may not be able to take the exemption on homes used for business or as a rental.

Figuring the Tax

Before you can estimate how much tax you might owe, you need to calculate the cost basis for the property. Figure the tax by completing these steps:

Figure the Cost Basis

Add the price you paid for the property to the cost of any significant improvements. Subtract any casualty and theft losses, closing costs you paid when you bought the house and allowable depreciation. You might be able to subtract some closing costs. If you inherited the property, the initial investment is the fair market value on the date of the death of the person who willed the house to you.

For gifted properties, if there is a gain, you use the donor’s adjusted basis in the cost basis equation. If there is a loss, the cost basis is the fair market value on the date you received the property as a gift or the donor’s adjusted basis, whichever is less.

Figure the Capital Gain

Once you have the cost basis, subtract it from the sale price of the house. For example, if you paid $500,000 for your home and you are now selling it for $1,000,000, you have a capital gain of $500,000. If you are single, you will pay tax on $250,000. If you are married, the exclusion is $500,000, which wipes out the $500,000 profit.

Reducing the Tax Owed

You may be able to use the Section 1031 exchange if you are selling a home used for business or that was rented out as long as you buy another house for business or to rent out. The new purchase cannot be for personal use and the exchange must be for “like-kind.”

The regulations for a Section 1031 exchange are limited and may be confusing. Always retain a tax lawyer or accountant to help you with your taxes, especially if you are buying and selling an investment property. If you are selling a million dollar plus home and you use it as your personal residence, you should still contact a tax lawyer. Depending on your finances, the tax lawyer may be able to help you avoid some of the tax.




Categories: Selling  


Posted by Dana Claflin on 12/5/2019

An open approach to selling a home can make a world of difference for any seller, at any time. In fact, there are many reasons to maintain an open approach to selling a house, and these include:

1. You can consider all of your home selling options.

The prices of homes in one part of the country may vary from the prices of similar houses in another. Fortunately, a home seller who keeps his or her options open can map out the home selling journey based on the current housing sector's conditions.

As you prepare to sell your house, it helps to analyze the local real estate sector and keep your options open. That way, you can price your house appropriately, promote it to the right groups of buyers and boost the likelihood of a fast, profitable home sale.

2. You can wait to accept an offer that matches your expectations.

Let's face it – no home seller wants to deal with underwhelming offers to buy his or her residence. If you maintain an open approach to selling your home, however, you may be better equipped than others to avoid selling yourself short.

Ultimately, an informed home seller is open to any offer on a residence but will only accept a proposal that matches his or her expectations. If this seller receives a "lowball" offer, he or she will have no trouble politely declining the proposal. Or, if this seller gets a "fair" offer, he or she can accept the proposal and move forward in the home selling journey.

3. You can reduce the risk of making rash home selling decisions.

The pressure to sell a house can be immense, particularly for an individual who is selling a residence for the first time. But with an open approach to selling a house, you may be able to avoid making rash home selling decisions.

When the going gets tough for a home seller, he or she knows how to calm down and stay focused. By taking a deep breath and looking at the big picture, a home seller can think and act logically. Then, this seller can allocate the necessary time and resources to make informed home selling choices and increase the probability of making the right decisions based on his or her individual needs.

For those who are getting ready to sell a house, it helps to maintain an open approach to the home selling journey. Furthermore, if you need extra assistance as you prepare to list your home, you may want to reach out to a local real estate agent.

A real estate agent will help you showcase your residence to potential buyers and review offers. Perhaps best of all, he or she can provide honest, unbiased home selling advice and help you remain calm, cool and collected in even the toughest home selling situations.

Make the most of your home selling experience – take an open approach to the home selling journey, and you can move one step closer to accomplishing your home selling goals.







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