After I have negotiated a contract on a home, the next question I am frequently asked by Lake Charles Home Sellers is:
When Should I Start Packing?
Purchase contracts in Southwest Louisiana real estate are usually written anywhere between 30-45 days when a buyer is obtaining financing. The first two weeks of the purchase contract is generally when the buyers home inspection and appraisal are completed. After that time it is usually full speed ahead with two weeks in underwriting until a clear to close is obtained for the buyer. There is never a guarantee with a buyer’s loan approval until Final loan approval is obtained.
If you have your Lake Charles Home for Sale, chances are you are relocating to another home and have to sell your home, as opposed to listing your home for sale just to test the market or keeping your options open. So it is a good idea to begin packing household items that are not necessities before or during the time your home is on the market. Your Lake Charles Home for Sale will show better if you de-clutter and remove some of your personal photos or displays. Use the listing time to pack those items safely away and you will be one step ahead of the game!
There is no clear answer that I can give a seller as to when to begin packing . Realtors keep a clear line of communication and the lender will update the Realtor when they have a status to share. Many times the buyer’s loan will take longer in Underwriting or there are conditions that need to be met until a lender will give final approval. That is what I call the la-la time period, where we are all waiting and have no control.
- What if I tell my seller to go ahead and prepare to move and for some reason, the buyer does not obtain loan approval and the purchase contract falls apart?
- What if final loan approval does not come until 1-2 days before closing?
Coordinating the timing of closing and moving can be frustrating. Sellers have to be pepared to be packed and moved out on that Act of Sale Date. Ownership transfers at Closing. The Louisiana Purchase Contract states that Occupancy/possession takes place at Act of Sale.
Lenders do their very best to meet the contract date, If an extension is needed to close sometimes it becomes necessary to adjust plans. If the Seller is already moved out, Buyers may ask for “early occupancy” Early occupancy is a liability for the Seller and not always an option. Sometimes it may be necessary for a Buyer to obtain temporary lodging until closing.
My best advice to Sellers is to have a plan in place and be prepared to be out of the home on or before the closing date. Have items boxed and ready to move with only the basics left to pack quickly. If this is not an option then a Post-Occupancy Agreement will need to be negotiated between the Buyer and the Seller.
Post Occupancy Agreements are not popular in Southwest Louisiana and if negotiated the Seller should be prepared to pay the Buyer a pro-rated rent for the days they remain in the home. A Hold Harmless Agreement will also need to be signed by Buyer and Seller releasing Realtors, and Real Estate Brokerages from any liability.
Sellers keep this in mind: you have listed your home to sell. You may receive a contract in 1 day, 1 month or 6 months. Be flexible and prepared ahead of time with a plan in place of where you will go when the time comes!
Marilyn Boudreaux is a Full Time Licensed REALTOR in the State of Louisiana affiliated with Century 21 Mike D. Bono & Co.’s.
Copyright 2011© Marilyn Boudreaux
Marilyn Boudreaux, REALTOR® 337-499-9592
Century 21 Mike D. Bono & Co.’s
4410 Nelson Road
Lake Charles, LA USA 70605