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By Tara-Nicholle Nelson | Broker in San Francisco, CA

10 Pieces of Paper You Must Round Up to Buy (or Sell) a Home

Home buyers and -sellers alike often bristle with anticipatory irritation at the mere thought of all the paperwork they expect they’ll have to come up with to do their transaction, above and beyond the basic loan application, contract, disclosures and closing docs. And these worries start way in advance; it’s as though, before they even start visiting open houses, buyers begin to visualize - and dread - spending hours upon hours in the dank catacombs of the Vatican (à la Da Vinci Code) combing through ancient files, seeking some rare and precious artifact documenting their childhood dental history or genealogy.

In some respects, this vision of the experience of obtaining a home loan might not be far off - there are oodles of hoops through which to jump and, occasionally, the loan underwriter requests something sort of bizarre. But more commonly, there’s a pretty finite universe of documents you’ll really need to scrounge up to get your home bought - or sold. Here they are:
  1. ID (e.g., driver’s license, state-issued ID, passport).  Who must produce it?  Buyers and sellers.  Why?  Uh, hello!?!  Lender wants to know that you are who you say you are, buyers, and the title insurance company wants to make sure, sellers, that you actually have the right to sell the home.  Funny enough, this commonly goes unrequested until you get to the closing table, when the notary requests to see it before signing, but some mortgage brokers and even some real estate brokers and agents may ask to see it earlier on.
  2. Paycheck Stubs.  Who must produce it?  Any buyer financing their purchase with a mortgage.  Sellers, usually only in the case of a short sale.  Why? Buyers’ purchase price ranges are determined, in part, by their income. And short sellers have to prove an economic hardship.
  3. Two months’ bank account statements. Who must produce it?  Buyers getting financing; sellers selling short. Why? Buyers’ lenders now require proof of regular income and proof that the down payment money is your own.  Short sellers?  It’s all about the hardship.
  4. Two years’ W-2 forms or tax returns. Who must produce it?  Mortgage-seeking buyers and short selling sellers. Why? Banks want to see a stable, long-term income. They also limit you to claiming as income the amount on which you pay taxes (attn: all business owners!). And in short sales, again, they want documentation of every single facet of your finances.
  5. Updated everything. Who must produce it? Buyer/mortgage applicants. Why? Because things change, and because the time period between the first loan application and closing can be many months - even years! - on today’s market. During the time between contract and closing it’s not at all unusual for underwriters to demand buyers produce updated mortgage statements, checks stubs, and such - and its quite common for them to call your office the day before closing to request a last minute verification of employment!
  6. Quitclaim deed. Who must produce it?  Married buyers purchasing homes they plan to own as separate property.  Married sellers selling homes that they own separately, or joint owners selling their interests separately.  Why? With the Quitclaim Deed, the other spouse or owner signs any and all interests they even might have had in the property over the the selling owner, making it possible for the title insurer to guarantee clear, undisputed title is being transferred in the sale.
  7. Divorce decree.  Who must produce it? Buyers and sellers who need to document their solo status or the property-splitting terms of their divorce. Why? Again, to ensure that the seller has the right to sell.  Recently single buyers might need to prove that they shouldn’t be held to account for their ex’s separate debts or credit report dings.
  8. Gift letters.  Who must produce it? Buyers using gift money toward their down payment.  Why? The bank wants to be sure the gift came from a relative, and is their own money to give.  They also want the relative to confirm in writing that it’s a gift, not a loan - a loan would need to be factored into your debt load.
  9. Compliance certificates. Who must produce it? Usually sellers, but sometimes buyers, by contract. Why? Some local governments require various condition requirements be met before the property is transferred, like some cities which require a sewer line be video scoped and repaired, cities which require a checklist of items be met before a certificate of occupancy be issued (usually relevant to brand new and really old homes, the latter of which are often subject to lead paint concerns) and energy conservation ordinances which require low-flow toilets and shower heads to be installed. Ask your real estate pro for advice about which, if any, such ordinances apply in your area.
  10. Mortgage statements. Who must produce it?  Any seller with a mortgage. Why? the escrow holder or title company will need to use them to order payoff demands from any mortgage holder who has to get paid before the property’s title can be transferred.
By no means is this an exhaustive list.  Agents: what documents do you see buyers and sellers struggle to scrounge up during their home buying transactions?

P.S. - You should follow Trulia and Tara on Facebook, too!

Comments

By Ricardo Cobos,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 05:10
#3 is a big hang up for Buyers - they will need to explains and oft prove the source of any non -payroll verified deposits.
By Ruth Ann Manison,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 05:23
Sellers always struggle to find their existing property survey. In Texas it can save a buyer several hundred dollars in closing costs if the buyer can use an existing survey with no changes.
By Lilly Hughes,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 05:27
#1 You'd be surprised how many discover at closing that their pictrure ID has expired.
By Nirmala Caraballo,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 05:34
Great information Tara. I had a buyer that shreds everthing (she hated clutter) and only keeps her current tax returns. As soon as she pay her bills, she would then shred it. When she found a property that she wanted to purchase, we had to contact her bank, accountant and place of employment to obtain additional copies.
By Karen Wilson,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 05:39
As more and more buyers work out of their homes this seems to be some sort of red flag to lenders, I recently closed one where no matter what the buyer produced from her company (a national one) it did not seem to please the lender. We made it happen in the end but was touch and go and at one time we had to switch lenders. In this day and age with so many working from the home it seems absurd.
By Pamela Stetson,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 05:40
You will also need copies of the following:
final water, tax and electric bills
CO certificate from the town ( Certificate of Occupancy )
termite inspection paper to get the mortgage
Title, Deed ( not just quick claim deed )
Homeowner Warantee ( if any )
By Mary Ann Varner,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 05:51
Another one would be POA (Power of Attorney) if applicable.
By Rich Radley,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 05:52
#3 for selling in these times many are looking for that short sale or deed in lieu and may only be on the verge of hardship. I find that if you need to prove low dollars (ie a hardship) Mortage Holders have been asking for only one Banks data and only one month of data they are happy with that. Also a good saving grace is that Mortage holders Never look at your IRA or 401 or anything you can call retirement.
I guess some of the reasons for these many simular conditions is that we find ourselves in a home that is overs sized for what we need and the market is so down and when people just can't keep the home they are in its very difficult to sell at any price. A few years ago home owners in these conditions would sell and make a little profit. It seems that this is gone and won't be back for a very long time.
By Mike & Shirley Beck,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 06:11
Does anyone know if there are additional documents or what is needed to purchase a second home?
By Crystal Parker,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 06:42
Survey
By Christopher Marks,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 06:48
And be prepared to provide all of this stuff at least twice because somewhere along the way someone will insist that they never received it, lost it or forwarded it to another department where it can't be located. So, save yourself some frustration and aggravation and prepare everything in (at least) duplicate so that an extra copy is quick and easy to find when a problem arises. And before you give up the "extra" copy be sure to make an additional copy for your file.
By Ray Laracuente,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 06:51
ahhhhh what do mean we're not closing today!!! which piece of paper is that?
By John C Holst,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 07:14
GREAT LIST. To add to #3 and #8 above: To show aging, that you have had the money for over 60 days that you are using for down payment and closing costs. If you are relying on a gift have them “gift early” so it can age the funds in your bank account for at least 60 days. Official signed Gift Letter still a requirement. Two months’ bank account statements must show all funds necessary to close on property.

PRE-LOAN APPROVAL. You are provided the required & mandatory (for bank-owned properties) “Pre-Loan Approval” that will be absolutely necessary for the seller to review & consider your contract as more likely to close and to obtain the lowest buying price from the seller.

GET $1000.00 MONEY ORDER. Early into home hunting get a blank Money Order for $1000.00 made out to _________ Title Company. It will be necessary to attach a copy of the $1000 Money Order to your contract offer to 1. Fulfill the bank-owned mandatory requirement or they will not even look at your contract. and 2. Impress upon the Seller that you are serious, show proper respect and differentiate your contract from others.

PROOF OF FUNDS - What Does POF Mean? A document that demonstrates that a person has the ability and funds available to use for a transaction. It usually comes in the form of a bank, security or escrow custody statement. The purpose of the document is to ensure that the funds required for the transaction are obtainable and legitimate.

COPY OF SUBDIVISION INDENTURES. If you are part of a subdivision, then you have a Home Owner Association ("HOA") with Trustees. They are empowered to assess subdivision fees and special assessments as part of the Indentures that were filed with the county before your house was built.

ROAD MAINTENANCE AGREEMENT. Very important step in Executive Relocations, where the relocation package usually requires that you purchase a home on a street that is maintained and repaired by the city, county, state --- or a private road that is covered by a recorded Road Maintenance Agreement.
By Jeanette Igoe,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 07:21
When buying in a HOA or Condo you need an Estoppel Letter from the Association.
By John C Holst,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 07:22
TO ADD TO THE POF: It is best for your buyer client to not over disclose to the seller their full financial capacity. A letter from a bank officer is the best tool to accomplish the POF requirement.

PROOF OF FUNDS AVAILABILITY

Date: _______________

To whom it may concern:

Contemplated Home Purchase; Confirmation of Available Funds

This is to confirm available funds deposited in our bank are in excess of $___________________ ; that _______________________ have available to fund the down payment on the purchase of a home in _________

The above amount are available to be used for the down payment of a home.

Please feel free to call if further confirmation is necessary:

XYZ National Bank

____________________

Bank Officer

*************************************************************
By Louis Maldonado,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 07:34
As a new agent this is great stuff
By Margo Christophilis,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 07:34
We are also seeing now that a lot of our lenders are asking for Social Security Cards that must be produced along with filling out a Social Security Card statement.
A credit letter regarding recent inquiries for the last 120 days if they added any new debts or if it has not added any new debts at close to closing as the lenders are pulling a credit supplement a few days before closing to verify the buyer has not incurred any new debts.
Regarding Short Sales we see the lien holder ( Seller Side ) sending over their specific papers regarding this transaction - Most Commonly OWB.
By Craig Schaid,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 07:36
This is another GREAT post Tara!! You are so wonderful, keep them coming!!
By Ben Naser,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 07:38
I am a none US citizen , paying cash to buy a property , so what do I need besides cash and passport .
By Laurel R. Galloway,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 07:44
Probate Documents in an Estate sale...make sure the seller has filed them and that they are in order. Otherwise it will delay the closing.
By Rita Landem,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 08:03
I find most seller's can not locate their Title policy, survey, and home owner association name, management name, contact name and phone number, and copy of the home owner rules, regulations, and documents.
By Chris Davis - Avalon Home Selling Team,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 08:04
Great post Tara!! There are many docs needed depending on the situation, location, property type etc....and the list could go on and on!! You did a great job at getting the basics and a start for consumers to think about! Keep it up.
By Rita Landem,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 08:10
Many Buyer's forget they must purchase in advance of closing, and show proof of a 1 year pre-paid Homeowner's Hazard Insurance Policy to their lender. Many buyer's and seller's also forget to notify utility companies, Post Office change of address, and other things like cable service, internet, dish, etc.
By Thuan Nguyen,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 08:15
With all the fraud that is going on, I am asking to see seller's IDs almost immediately.
By John Arbour,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 08:25
as a non resident of florida wil my real estate taxes be more than a resident.
By Ruth & Perry Mistry,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 08:36
Great article. Thanks
Ruth
By Asa Lennon,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 08:50
Bottom line is the more compliance, the shorter the transaction and the less chance of something changing to alter the outcome of that transaction. I've always found that the longer the transaction takes to close, the greater the chance it will fall through..
By Juanita M. Lichalk,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 09:10
GREAT INFORMATION FOR A NOVICE!
By Donna Meyers-Glyda,ABR,ASP,CNE,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 09:22
I have transfering clients coming to this area to look for a new home. They are here from out of town and have only brought a few documents with them. Now they have the expense of having to request documents overnight to comply with time limits on the Proof of Funds or a missing Tax Return. Your article would be nice to post on my site to advise potential purchasers to gather all the necessary papers before they leave home. Thank you!
By Ceno Wilson,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 10:02
Another timely article. I believe that preparation is paramount to being successful. Thanks Tara.
By Tonya Hurt,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 10:03
I find many buyers cannot find bank statements. Many shred them after they have looked at them.
By Kathy E Awai, Realtor(S), ABR,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 11:36
As an agent in Hawaii (the Big Island), I find that there are some things that are done differntly here or are not required at all. Our escrow and title companies are great at assisting both Buyers and Sellers with their needed paperwork and of course the Lender needs to instruct and assist their Buyer's in obtaining necessary documents required for purchasing a property. Regarding AOAO paperwork, I find most Seller's do not know where their paperwork is however, we usually end up ordering a whole new packet, especially when it comes to financial, insurance, meeting minutes, etc. as those things change all the time.

Kathy E. Awai, Realtor (S) ABR
By Gloria,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 12:43
I asked for copies of utility bills from the seller. I received a piece of paper with figures on it and dates, but not the original bills. Is this a way to do business? the homeowner passed away a few yrs ago and the son is taknig care of the estate I'm buying.
By Jeanette Igoe,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 12:53
John, the tax basis is a fair across the board tax, the only difference is if you don't intend to live in it and make it your primary residence, you will not be able to take the Homestead Exemption tax.
All taxes are based on the sale price of the property, no matter where you are from.
Jeanette
By Terry And Claudia Streckfuss,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 13:13
Posted on my facebook page good information as always
By Victoria Wells,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 14:50
great post, however it's mostly for mortgage brokers. As a real estate broker I would not ask the client for their DL or tax returns.
By Kenneth,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 15:06
We bought a house this year in Az. and were surprised how difficult things have gotten. We both get social security and so we needed our Award letter from SC . The wife got hers a few years ago and we were lucky that we still had it. It seemed there were several different degrees for being actually approved and more documents each and every week on the road to getting a mortgage.
By Dan Chase,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 15:27
You made a huge mistake. I would not need at least 8 of your 10 listed.
By Odetta Clinton,  Thu Mar 24 2011, 16:07
Very good article. Thanks Tara.
By Patrickh,  Fri Mar 25 2011, 09:08
If it has anything to do with the American dream, you can bet it is gonna be long and painful.
By Victoria Germaise,  Fri Mar 25 2011, 10:31
This is a terrific list!!
By Max Sabo,  Fri Mar 25 2011, 10:31
It seems like a lot of paper work at first, but considering the value of a home its pretty reasonable.
By Farzan,  Sat Mar 26 2011, 16:57
It is a lot of work, but worth it!!!
By Buy and Sell House Fast,  Sun Mar 27 2011, 16:30
That was a great useful list
By Petra Reyes,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 06:12
Make sure ID name matches with name used in rest of documents, I seen people adding or omitting middle names, last names changes or using nicknames in some of the documents and not using it in other documents. It drives me crazy!. Other issue is signatures, people signs adding or omitting middle names etc
By Sylvia Jonathan,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 06:13
A well thought out list. Buyers sometimes think lenders are asking for documents for sport!
An item a seller may have to produce is documentation on homeowner insurance settlement and ensuing repairs. If the home has had and damage (particularly from water) insurability becomes a big issue. One seller had to give copies of the repair invoices and the insurance settlement letter before the buyer could obtain a policy.
By Patreecia Spaulding,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 06:20
Thanks for this great list and all the comments. I seem to have a lot of cash buyers these days, so that simplifies things. Another complication, however, is when you have multiple buyers - three or more- and you need all this paperwork from everyone. You really have to impress upon them that, yes, you really need all of it for all of them. And the middle name thing - I agree. Is the initial good enough or the whole name or any of it. I understand that varies by state. Thanks, again.
By Don Blakeley,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 06:28
Thanks for posting this article and thanks to all of you who have contributed. Yes, borrowers are flooded with paperwork, most of which they do not understand. I recently had one who shredded everything and was very slow about bringing me up to date with pay stubs...what a nightmare. I will print this and keep it in my "Book of Knowledge." which I produce for my clients.
By Karen Gately Herrick,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 06:28
Another big issue for sellers is proper record of title. Many release of liens are not being recorded at the registry by the lender or are mailed to the home owner without an explanation of the purpose. Clearing up simple title issues like this can still take hours so would make a great # 11.
By Patty Wallace,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 06:41
Did I miss this one in the comments above? Proof of homeowners insurance from the new buyer.
By Pat Lowery,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 06:43
Thanks for the article Tara....this is really a great help!
By Donna T. Baltera,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 06:44
Hi Tara
We sell acreage properties in in New Braunfels, & Canyon Lake ,Texas.
Often we need schematics of the septic lines.We encourage the sellers to include a copy of their septic permits along with the On Site Sewer Addendum.( we are required to attach to the seller's disclosure in Tx)
If the sellers are unable to retrieve their permit, we can now get it for them on our Comal County website.

Donna Baltera
Broker Owner
REA ESTATE HAUS
By John Keene,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 06:49
Good List but Survey is huge for sellers. My listing/seller declined to have a survey done when he bought his home. When he listed with me he deferred to have the survey done when he got an offer which he received in Nov 2008. At that time the survey showed his home encroaching on BLM (government land ) by 1.5 feet. After over two years he was able to by the small piece of land from the BLM on March 14, 2011 to remove the encroachment; but during the two + years he has fallen behind on his mortgage and if short sale not approved he will be foreclosed on. $250 would have eliminated this painful process.

John Keene
Broker Owner
RE/MAX Gold
Deadwood SD

By Barry Ratliff,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 06:51
Single over seas or out of country borrowers who work for state side employers or military must show proof of residency in the city where they want to buy prior for a period of time if they don't plan on occupying residence right away. Lenders view these borrowers as investors even if they don't own or have never owned property before.

Another is two vets that are not married or single that want to use each others entitlements must be submitted and approved directly from the VA local office. Thx for the comments to help those in need for help in this ever changing mortgage circus.
By Jamie Moss,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 06:57
Many items are very specific to the location and the property. I have not needed a survey yet, but on bigger lots it's always a good thing to have. If the property is run down it might be helpful to get a bring down from the insurance company to see how many claims have been made about the house.
Great list !
By Doreen Zelma,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 07:01
It's a great idea to bring a personal check as well. Sometimes, the HUD is slightly off. In Texas, you are able to write a nominal check if your cashier's check or bank wire is slightly off.

Doreen Zelma
Realtor, GRI
http://www.supportlocalaustin.com/
Austin, TX
By Debbie Shickel,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 07:11
Just remember every state is different and every lender seems to be using different criteria in the home loan process. I think what Tara has is a basic list but each agent needs to know what is required by the specific loan that their client is doing. I give each client a list prior to them going to the lender and I make sure that they are pre-approved before writing the contract.
By Donna Kunzig,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 07:13
If a seller abandons their in-ground oil tank, they will be required to show proof that it was done legally and in accordance with local environmental ordinances. Great list Tara; great discussion! I took everyone's comments and composed a single list to provide my buyers and sellers!
By Donna Kunzig,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 07:15
Also, if new construction was done to the home, in addition to the C/O's, UL Certificates could be required...Homeowners...hold on to your paperwork!!!
By Rachel Cheeney,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 07:15
Condo buyers and sellers beware! We're in a holding pattern awaiting an HOA president response to fully complete FORM 921 requested by lender along with the Master Insurance Policy agent's name and phone number. Make sure the HOA and contact information is complete and at the ready when listing your condo for sale!
By Yvette Palmer, REALTOR,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 07:17
#1 is definitely the most important document to start with…By obtaining a copy of a picture ID before showing a property is a good business practice for your own safety! How else do you know if that person is legit? And, when you are getting ready to write up a contract you need to make sure you are specifying legal names on your contracts. I just had a situation where the Buyer’s name was incorrect on the purchase contract for an REO property I have listed. After all negotiations had been completed and the purchase addendum had been created…Buyer’s Agent corrected the name on the purchase contract and returned signed contract/addendum. Guess what? By the Agent correcting the name after the fact, agreement had been inadvertently canceled because the name did not coincide with what was originally uploaded in the REO system! Needless to say, the process had to start all over again.
By Rachel Cheeney,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 07:20
In Iowa? All I can say is abstract, abstract, abstract!
By JOYCE BAKER,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 07:31
If the parties are not US citizens and are buying a primary residence a Valid 'Green Card' along with Valid Drivers' License or Valid Passport is needed. If it is a husband and wife and only one is doing the buying, here in Florida both must show Valid ID and the non-buying spouse must sign and waive 'Homestead' rights on the mortgage. Validating all ID will help with those that are not here legally or have expired visas.
By Candice A Donofrio,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 07:34
--Paperwork for a family trust or limited family partnership if purchasing or selling into or out of one.
--If purchasing in the name of a LLC or Corporation, copy of your Articles showing you have power to sign.
--If property was a new manufactured home, copy of the lien release from the manufacturer. Dealerships often encumber properties with inventory liens and forget to clear them.
By Tni LeBlanc, JD, MA, Broker,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 07:40
So much paperwork, so little time. Great article and reminder, Tara.
Buying or selling a home can sometimes feel like death by paperwork. Get ready!
By Zoila (zee) Khouri,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 07:49
A great list to pass on to buyers and sellers. Thank you.
By Donna Gardner,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 07:55
Thanks Tara, You always get my mind going. In South Louisiana with all our recent history of hurricans Fema has changed the flood maps. Some homes may require flood insurance that were never before in a flood zone. With that insurance being thousands of dollars a year added to escrow it has lessened the amount a buyer can spend on a home. To get a possiable reduction in the insurance you need a Flood Elevation Certificate, sellers always have trouble finding their copy. A new one has to obtained by the buyer. It can save the buyer a few hundered dollars if the seller can produce it.
By MONICA CAROSI,,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 08:10
Thanks Tara, a precious list to keep in mind to save time and to ask our Clients to get ready to buy/sell.
Thank you
By Betsy Lynch, ABR,GRI,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 08:19
Timely article. Thanks to all of you that posted as well.
By TerriVellios.Com,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 08:21
Great list. Very interesting how different cities and State have additional requirements. It simply reinforces the benefit of working with a local Realtor.

In a recent closing the lender required a second photo ID at sign off. Luckily the buyers, in addition to driver's licensed, also had a Costco card and one had a Health Membership ID.
By dfgfdgfdgfgdf,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 08:21
Thanks for the post. It is always good to have a checklist of information.
By Stephen B Holben,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 08:25
When I went to one of the "big" banks for my last construction loan, the kid asked for my divorce papers...from 1980!!! I asked him if he was out of his F ing mind, got up and went to a local bank and closed in 1 week.
By K. Kemper,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 08:35
sorry but BUNK, garbage. She forgot to list;
your clothes
your interest
your wits
sorry,
By Rosemarie D'Arienzo,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 08:45
Thanks Tara, Great information
By Vicki Watson,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 09:26
Thank you for such a timely article. I posted it on my facebook to share with everyone!
By Clara Outler,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 09:29
Great article Tara. Also a great idea to inform the buyer not to make any unusual large deposits into their accounts unless they have documentation to prove exactly where the funds came from because their checking and savings account will be audited by the lender up until closing.
By Roxie Baber,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 10:02
When I am working with a Seller, the first thing I do when I take a listing is go to the county building dept and get all the permits, CO's, surveys, and anything else that is on file on the property and it becomes part of the listing file. It saves time prior to closing should something come up, and I have answers to lots of Buyer's questions on the property. I do the same thing when I have a Buyer select a property, sometimes even before they make an offer so they know what they are getting into before it's too late. Don't depend on Sellers providing these docs - most don't have a clue what they are looking for or they may have purchased the property unaware of some of these issues.
By Peggy And Mike Polomski,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 10:23
Thanks Tara, Great List. Also John Hoist had a great list to add as well. Peggy
By Tamara Schuster Broker, Agent,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 11:52
Thanks again Tara for helping making our job better by sharing this useful information.
By Soraima Alonso,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 12:17
excellent information to pass it on to buyers and seller. Thank you.
By Simone Hardy,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 12:56
Excellent article Tara. Thanks for sharing. The more we fellow agents take the dread of the process the better we can service our clients. Well done!
By MaryCeu Nunes,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 14:10
Thank you for sharing Tara.
By Nancy Fabian,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 14:11
Don't forget about the Master Deed and HOA information. These items are very important information to know before you close on your home.
By Mary Baldwin,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 14:16
I agree. The more we can prepare our clients upfront, especially first time homebuyers, the better it is for all of us! Thanks for a great article.
By Kari McCoy,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 15:42
Thank you all for sharing such wonderful ideas!
By Donald Reich,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 15:45
Great Article. I am showing it to all my sellers!
By Stephanie Meza,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 15:49
This will be great information for my buyers! Thanks for all the great tips.
By Renee Hunter, Broker, SFR, ABR,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 18:45
Great infomation for buyers and seller. Thanks for sharing this tips.
By Carol Gilles,  Tue Mar 29 2011, 18:51
I added this to FB because this is a great list to start a homebuying conversation. Thanks!
By Tony Patnaik,  Wed Mar 30 2011, 12:07
Useful List, If the listed property is a REO and there is no sellers disclosure available and there is a septic tank in the property that was constructed in 2001,is it a worthwhile idea to search the county records for the septic permit as a part of the service to the buyer for their peace of mind.?

Tony Patnaik,
Broker,
Florida
By Vera Gleason,  Wed Mar 30 2011, 20:31
I love this list and will save and send to all my buyers and sellers. Sometimes I don't think they believe me when I inform them of the documents they will need. This will certainly help!
#3 always causes problems because if one of the pages is blank the client thinks it is not important. Then when there is a hold up because a page is missing they get upset. In addition many agents are asking for the first page of credit report from buyers to show FICO scores. I always remove the SSN# if buyer forgets.
By Ray and Kathi Pirolo,  Thu Mar 31 2011, 12:55
This is a great list to give to your buyers. Its also a good idea to let them know to NOT make any major purchases until after closing on their new Home. It could cost them the home or at least postpone it for several months.
By Aiza@mobilehomes,  Tue Apr 5 2011, 17:59
@Ray:
I agree. Great list here. This presents lots of options for customers.Modular Homes
By Brian Petrelli,  Fri May 6 2011, 11:02
Great post. Thanks for the info. Too many buyers/selelrs forget marriage / divorce certs.
By Sun Realty - Graham Ginsberg,  Thu Nov 3 2011, 07:18
More good information from a classy writer. Thanks Tara and take a look at my website http://www.naples-fl-real-estate.com/2010/pelican-bay-naples/ if you have a chance
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By Voices Member,  Fri Jun 7 2013, 13:20
I just put copies of all those papers in a file to have when I sell my house... thanks, Tara!

David | http://aroma-pure.com/blends.htm
By Voices Member,  Wed Jun 19 2013, 12:29
I keep copies of all of these papers and I love the idea that I will have them if I need them. Great advice, Tara!

David | http://www.dsbahr.com/ROOFING.html

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