Okay sellers, your house is coming to a close and you’re getting ready for the final days or even hours before you end this chapter. What should you be doing or what’s the “right thing” to do?
In this blog post let’s go over closing day etiquette and outline some dos and don’ts so that your buyers are excited and you can move onto your next exciting adventure.
If you want a buyers perspective on this topic check out my last blog post on What To Expect Of The House On Closing Day For Buyers.
TIP #1 - CLEAN
Tip number one is clean your house after moving out. Most Sellers are good about leaving a home in an orderly fashion for the new Buyer. After moving all day it’s understandable that you don’t have enough gas in the tank to clean the house from top to bottom.
So naturally Sellers will ask “how clean is clean enough?” The answer is leave the home in the condition you’d want to find it if you were the buyer. I get it, everyone’s perception of clean can be very different.
Some real estate contracts state that the home must be swept clean, garbage removed, nail holes filled and so on. Sellers need to go over their contract or if you’re working with me, I send out an email with these reminders to keep everything in check for you before you close.
In order to make sure your house is clean enough for the buyers it’s a good idea to move one day and clean the next, leaving a day before closing so your buyers final walkthrough is impeccable. I understand many people move the same day to their next property so consider storing your items in a unit, trailer or moving truck for a day to save you frantically moving on closing day with your tiny jetta. A great idea is to hire a professional cleaning company to do this. Talk to your realtor for local services for this option. Not only is leaving the house clean and tidy the right thing to do, but it can also help ensure a smoother closing process.
TIP #2 - LEAVE A GIFT & NOTE
The next tip for good Etiquette is to leave a note and a bottle of booze.
You don’t have to buy Dom Perignon. Just grab a cheap bottle of Toro Bravo Merlot, my ten dollar special. Along with a love note with the ins and outs of the light switches, remotes, quirky tricks to the property, or best restaurants in town for take out.
This powerful gesture will go a long way in the hearts of the new buyers.
Tip #3 - THINGS TO LEAVE BEHIND
Tip number three is to offer or verify if or what belongings the buyer would like left behind such as old paint, or flooring.
Most likely the buyer is going to be happy you left behind a paint can you used to freshen up the living room 2 months ago or at least have the colour codes saved for each room.
But DON’T be leaving behind your four year old chunky paint cans because you’re too lazy to dispose of them yourself. You always need to verify these things can be left behind for the new buyer. Have your realtor help you find these answers.
TIP#4 - MANUALS
Tip number four is to leave the manuals. Strangely enough, people still use these. Manuals for electronics, and appliances or even assembly instructions can come in handy for new buyers.
TIP #5 - FORWARD MAIL
Tip number five is to forward your mail. And by mail I mainly mean update your amazon account to your new address. I don’t mind telling the buyers to bring your newly ordered Nicholas cage cushions inside for the weekend.
Yes, I googled top useless products that exist on amazon, ha ha.
But anything that auto-ships to your house, ensure it’s updated along with all your licenses, bills and utilities to save us all the hassle.
TIP #6 - SERVICE CONTRACTS
Tip number six is to cancel any services or contracts associated with the house.
We can’t assume the new buyers want to pay for your pool man or your cleaning lady.
Things like the alarm systems are good to ask the buyers if they would like to transfer or continue to save a setup or installation fee.
TIP #7 - APPLIANCES
Number seven is don’t even think about changing out any of the appliances. Whatever the buyer saw the day of their walkthrough is what they will expect unless stated differently in your contract.
This includes anything attached by bolts or screws such as bathroom mirrors, shelving, tv mounts, curtain rods, towel racks, and light fixtures.
And for your agent’s sake, please don’t remove the light bulbs.
If any of your appliances break before closing you are responsible to have them repaired or replaced but communication with the buyer is highly recommended. If you aren’t sure – call your real estate agent.
TIP #8 - REMOVE PERSONAL PROPERTY
Number eight is obvious but you need to remove all of your personal property.
It’s important to note that the responsibility for cleaning and overall condition of the home falls solely on the seller.
However, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or unsure of where to start, don’t hesitate to reach out to me for guidance. I’m here to help make the home selling process as smooth and stress-free as possible.