Closing can be an exciting yet stressful time. You have spent months, or maybe longer talking to professionals, conducting repairs, figuring out your next living arrangements, and moving your belongings. Now, you have a customer, have agreed on a price and sale date, and all you need to do is finalize the paperwork and transfer ownership of the house to the buyer. If all goes as planned, you can use the money from the sale to pay off your next financial obligations or any outstanding mortgages on the property and wash your hands of the whole business. However, there is no guarantee everything will go as planned. Here are a few things you can do as a seller to make sure that closing happens as easily and problem free as possible.  

  1. 1. First, make sure you have upheld any deals you made with the buyer. For example, any repairs which need to happen should be taken care of, and you should be able to document them. The buyer should be assured that you have done everything promised. No buyer wants to move in only to find out that promised repairs were not conducted, or that all of your personal belongings were not removed from the property. If they discover this on closing or afterwards, the closing could be delayed, or you could end up dealing with a lawsuit. Honesty between buyer and seller with documentation is the best way to protect yourself and make sure things go smoothly.  

  1. 2. Second, make sure all of your paperwork is in order. This will mean communicating with all of the entities involved in the sale, such as your realtor and lender. Ensuring that all paperwork is prepared correctly will prevent any last-minute issues on your side from delaying the process. Delays can be costly as well, particularly if you are looking to quickly turn around and use the cash from the home sale to finance the purchase of another property.  

  1. 3. Finally, ensure that you have a place to stay and that your plans of "what to do next" are finalized. Sometimes, the reason closing is delayed is that a seller has sudden last-minute worries. Make sure these are taken care of well in advance, as this can sometimes make a deal fall through. If you want to have things happen as smoothly as possible, you should be out of the house completely well before closing has finished.