COVID-19 Update: We are working remotely and available to help our clients. Learn more
Selling a home can be an exciting but daunting process. Here are helpful suggestions and things to consider when selling your home.   This list is not to be used as an exhaustive list for all situations.  If you would like more advice about a specific situation or unusual circumstance, please contact us to speak to one of our Real Estate Lawyers.

Preparing Your Home for Sale

Apart from finishing any repairs, cleaning and staging, be sure to remove any of the fixtures (lighting, mirrors, etc.) that you would like to take with you and switch them out for a different fixture.  Keep in mind that anything a prospective purchaser sees during their walk through they may expect to see on closing.  If you are not sure if something is a permanent fixture, you can ask your lawyer and realtor for their opinion.

Remember to gather all the important documents that concern your house as early as possible.  A prospective purchaser may want to see any documents and failure to provide such information you have on hand may impede or slow down your deal.

Home Insurance

It is not unusual for the closing date on the sale of your home to be extended, therefore it is highly recommended that you do not pre-cancel your home insurance.   There are cases where, for reasons beyond our control, on the day of closing, the sale gets extended for one or two days.  In this case if you have pre-cancelled your insurance, you will own an uninsured home.  It is better to have insurance for a few extra days rather than face the possibility of damage to your home that you will have to pay for out of pocket.

Utilities

Once the sale is final, call your providers to arrange for the disconnect of power, water and any other utilities.  Keep in mind however, that in order for your prospective purchaser to complete their pre-closing walk through they will need power and water. You will want to keep these services connected until the end of the day on the day of closing.

Change of Address

Once you have moved, change your address for bills, memberships, license, etc. and contact the Post Office to sign up for their mail forwarding service.  By signing up for the mail forwarding service you are able to receive any mail which would have been sent to your previous address.    

Moving Preparation

Collect moving boxes early, gather any necessary moving/cleaning supplies and dispose of any unwanted items. Do not leave anything behind that was not requested by the purchaser.    If you find something you think the new owners may want, you can ask your realtor or lawyer to check with the purchaser’s agents to see if they would like what you propose to leave behind.

Cleanliness often comes up as an issue on a pre-closing walk through, so you will want to ensure you do a thorough job cleaning. If not, you may be forced to either return to the home to clean up what the purchaser is complaining about, or offer a small credit to get your deal to close.

It is important to vacate the property at the time agreed upon in the Purchase and Sale Agreement.   This is negotiable up front when the agreement is signed but if you miss the selected time, you could holdup the pre-closing inspection and ultimately the closing; especially if you are left with a short period of time to deal with any issues.

If you are in a situation where you are selling and buying on the same day, it is important that you consider the items in this list carefully. This will help to ensure a smooth closing on your sale, which will assist in a smooth closing on your purchase.