It’s best to be honest about the condition of your for sale by owner house to buyers, especially when they’re seriously considering the real estate purchase. How much information is too much information, though? You’ll be tempted to withhold details for various reasons; buyers might also obsess over something as trivial as a broken garage door, opt out of the deal at the last minute.
Let’s say you were honest enough to disclose you recently resolved a termite problem, but the buyer still thinks a remnant squadron survived, one lurking deeper within the woodwork. Something’s got to give. You really have no idea what prospects in no agent property deals are thinking, and ‘buyers beware’ is the default in residential properties after all.
Nothing hurts more during the process of selling a house privately than having a lawsuit dropped on you after the property sold. Heaven forbid if you’re at fault. There are details buyers are better off knowing, and then there’s information they have to know. Here are 5 things you should reveal to serious buyers, especially before the deal closes.
Revelation #1: Your real estate property’s boundaries
Sometimes there’s discrepancy between what’s indicated in the deed, and the ‘virtual’ limits of your property. This is a common concern with residential homes, especially in tight-knit neighbourhoods. Trees on your yard may be well within your boundaries, but the roots could be dug deep into your neighbour’s territory.
Inform buyers of any right of way issues you’re settling. If you decide to let minor issues slide, buyers have a right to know how they can handle these in the future. Your best bet still is to lay it all out, but only for potential buyers who are seriously interested.
Revelation #2: Neighbour disputes surrounding your no agent property
If you’re having problems with neighbours, it’s either your fault or theirs. Your home’s new residents deserve to know about disputes just the same. Noisy and nosy neighbours pose problems later on, so wouldn’t it be easier if you schedule visits when they’re not home?
Prospects find out sooner or later, though, and it’s in their best interest to ensure you’ll pay dearly for the mistake. It’s true you’ll risk losing a prospect of your for sale by owner deal over a neighbour dispute, but on the flip side, it’s also possible the buyer could be the person next-door neighbours are looking for. In this case, your neighbours have as much to gain from the sale as you do.
Revelation #3: Notice of nearby developments
Prospects may not be aware of any planned developments for nearby properties, especially during the visit. It’s best to inform them if this involves long-term projects. If a neighbour is digging an Olympic-sized swimming pool just outside your yard fence, potential buyers deserve to know.
Prospects always look at property as part of their master plan, and they’ll consider how this is affected by any ongoing developments in the neighbourhood. What’s significant enough for you is equally notable to potential buyers.
Revelation #4: Alterations in the ‘for sale by owner’ property
Prospects should be aware how your for sale by owner home has changed over the years. This is up to your discretion, but you can share bits of information during the visit to find out how much each buyer wants to know. If the house has a lengthy history of renovations, an overview should be enough.
In any event, this issue might come up before the sale closes. Information on planning permissions (as well as building control completion certificates) must be disclosed, especially if you’ve yet to secure these.
Revelation #5: Details on building insurance
This is a requirement, but you need only disclose the details during the final leg of the process. If the buyer has confirmed the sale, any information that would ease the transition would be welcome. Make sure the insurance is updated up to the point of sale, and let the buyer know of the extent of the coverage.
Consider basic coverage if your property isn’t insured. This is a deal-breaker for many buyers of for sale by owner houses.
You’ll likely spend a few restless nights wide awake, deciding how much information you can disclose without sabotaging your own pitch. It does feel like you’re shooting yourself on the foot, revealing insider information to potential buyers. Have everything sorted out, though, and your due diligence will surely pay off when you sell a house fast.
It’s 2016 and the days of paying real estate agents a commission fee after you sell a house in Australia are over. For a nominal fee, we can help you sell your home privately. Visit our site to learn more about for sale by owner real estate.
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