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Someone Wants To Buy My House, Now What?

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Congratulations! Your hard work has paid off for you and one or more persons want to make an offer on your house…….so what’s the next step?

First, make sure you have the proper paper work for your property type and state. FSBOFox has forms available for all Quad City homes for sale. Believe it or not,  there are different forms for the Illinois QCA, (Rock Island and Moline) and Iowa QCA, (Davenport and Bettendorf).

Second, collect a “good faith” deposit, otherwise known as earnest money. There is no set number or legal amount you have to give but the general rule of thumb is 3% of the selling price. Most often this money will be held by the seller’s attorney, insurance company, or an Escrow company as a “trust.”  I have seen multiple friends selling their homes get jipped by not collecting any earnest money. The potential buyer backs out or can’t get the financing and your house was off the market for 30-60 days while waiting on the closing. Earnest money is insurance for you the seller, and if the buyer backs out you can recoup any lost money by the purchase falling through. A good faith deposit shows me the buyer is serious about the house and is confident they can get the financing. YOU NEED TO COLLECT A GOOD FAITH DEPOSIT.

Finally make sure whichever offer form you use it includes; the price, any contingencies, who pays for closing costs, closing date, and when the buyer will take possession. Many lawyers will draft these up for you. When I was a QCFSBO agent, the average cost for this service was $100 from various lawyers around the QC area.  Regardless if you have a lawyer draft the form or not, make sure your lawyer looks it over before SIGNING ANYTHING.

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