Whether you’re selling your home for the first time or you’ve been through this process before, you might be surprised at the amount of ‘jargon’ that is used by agents and in the numerous pieces of paperwork that you’ll complete. In this post we’ll break down some of the most commonly used terms in the home selling process, define them in simple terms and explain their importance to you as a seller.
Key Home Selling Terms to Know
Appraisal – An appraisal is the process that determines the value of your house and property. An experienced appraisal specialist visits your home, assesses its condition and any amenities that have been added on, and compares it with other successful home sales in the local area to come up with an estimate of its worth. If your buyer is getting a mortgage to pay for your home, they will need an appraisal to satisfy the lending bank that the home is worth the lending risk.
Closing Costs – Closing costs are all of the miscellaneous charges and fees that buyers and/or sellers will pay when ownership of the home is transferred. These can include property taxes, transfer taxes, lender’s fees, appraisal fees, home warranty costs, inspection costs, attorneys’ fees and more. Whether the buyer or seller picks up the majority of this tab depends on the negotiation and various other factors.
Contingency – A contingency is a condition placed on the transaction that allows one of the parties to walk away if it is not satisfied or met. For example, a buyer may place an offer contingent on whether or not they receive mortgage financing, or contingent on a professional appraisal proving the home’s worth.
Escrow – An escrow is a third-party service that holds payments and/or documents until the transaction is complete. If a buyer and seller enter into a “30 day escrow”, the buyer will provide the escrow with the funds to purchase the home and each party will have 30 days to complete any obligations as set out in the purchase contract.
Fixtures – A fixture is any piece of the home or property that is included as part of the premises, such as carpets, lighting or fences. Unless there is some agreement otherwise, all fixtures transfer ownership from the seller to the buyer when the sale is completed.
Title – Title refers to the legal ownership of a piece of property. As the owner, the seller has ‘title’ to their home and land. The title transfers to the buyer once the sales transaction has completed.
Zoning – Zoning ordinances are local laws that specify how a piece of property can be used. These guidelines tend to include the size of a home, the number of other buildings allowed and whether or not the premises can be used for business purposes.
Are you ready to get started with selling your Madison home? Great! The team here at Nicole Charles & Associates is excited to work with you. Contact us at your convenience at 608.622.SOLD or if you prefer, you can click the button below to send us an email. Let’s get a consultation scheduled and we can determine the value of your home and share how our real estate marketing approach will quickly draw in interested buyers. We look forward to it!