DO I NEED TO OFFER A HOME WARRANTY?
The decision to offer a home warranty for the purchase is entirely up to you, the seller. Some buyers may request a home warranty in their offer, which is up to you to accept during negotiations. A home warranty provides coverage on appliances and specific items for a specific amount of time, typically at least a year. Many first-time home buyers may purchase a home warranty or request one to be offered by the seller in their offer, so they are covered immediately after making their home purchase. This is smart for a buyer, as finances may be thinner during this time, and in the event of unexpected repairs or replacements, the warranty will kick in to save the day.

WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT AT CLOSING?
From a seller’s perspective closing date is pretty simple. Prior to the actual closing date, all items will have been checked off (inspections, repairs, appraisals, deed info, loan info, verification of tax payments, insurance, arranged key exchanges, and more). You should receive a final settlement statement so you can anticipate final net funds you should receive or owe at closing time. Prior to the actual closing date the seller will arrange a time to go in and sign all paperwork ahead of time. On the actual closing date, you should be able to simply wait for verification from your agent and closing officials that the buyers have completed their paperwork and all funds have been submitted and dispersed.

WHY USE A REALTOR® WHEN SELLING YOUR HOME?
Attempting to sell a home without a REALTOR® can really make the home selling process more difficult. When selling a home, it’s strongly recommended you have a REALTOR®. There are many state and national laws and regulations that all sellers must adhere to. Specific forms or addendums to a listing agreement that to be completed with listing a home (ex. Lead Paint, Radon, Seller Disclosures). Purchase agreements submitted by buyers’ agents which, may contain clauses, offers, additional requests and demands. Do you need a title company? These are just a few reasons a REALTOR® can be there to help protect you and guide you through the process.

Keep in mind, all REALTORS® are not the same! When choosing a listing agent, make sure you know how to properly interview prospective REALTORS® when selling your home. Ask questions about what makes them different. Not just their company, but them specifically. What do they do or can they do for you that the others cannot?

HOW MUCH NEEDS TO BE DONE TO MY HOUSE BEFORE PUTTING IT ON THE MARKET?
Ask a REALTOR® what should be completed or their opinion on where you should invest to help your home sell quicker or for a higher asking price. Regardless of the condition of your home it is wise to ask REALTORS® to put together a comparative market analysis report for you. This can show you what other homes have sold for, those for sale today, etc. View the condition of those compared to yours and put yourself in a position of a buyer, and ask yourself what would you want done. Certain things may be required to be completed where others you may be skip and allow the new owners to fix or change. View our segment on listing tips for more details on what may be able to help your home sell easier.

IS STAGING REALLY IMPORTANT?
According to the National Association of REALTORS® Forty percent of buyers’ agents cited that a home staging had an effect on most buyers’ view of the home. Eighty-three percent of buyers’ agents said staging a home made it easier for a buyer to visualize the property as a future home. The most common rooms staged were living room, kitchen, master bedroom, and dining room.

IS A PRIVATE HOME INSPECTION WORTH THE MONEY?
It absolutely is! For most people, a home is the largest investment they will ever make and protecting that investment by spending a few hundred dollars is well worth it. An inspector checks the safety of your potential home. Home inspectors focus especially on the structure, construction, and mechanical systems of the house and will provide you with a report of any repairs that need to be take care of, suggestions on how to maintain your home, and most importantly, will provide you with peace of mind. Some sellers will allow you to make the sale of the home contingent upon completion of a satisfactory home inspection. In this case, the seller will either make the proper repairs or compensate you for the repairs that need to be made.

Please be aware that the purpose of a home inspection is to point out repairs that can affect the safety and resale value of your home, not cosmetic blemishes. Be sure to choose a home inspector wisely. Be sure to ask questions and find out how many years they have been in the business. Talk to your family, friends, and REALTOR® to see if they can recommend one to you.

WHAT ARE THE TWO MOST IMPORTANT FACTORS WHEN SELLING A HOME?
Price and condition are the two most important factors in selling a home. The first step is to price your home correctly. Use comparative sales information from your agent or pay for a professional appraiser to objectively evaluate your home’s worth. Second, go through the house and repair any obvious defects and put your home into showing order as if you were viewing it for the first time. See our Listing tips section.

In addition, make sure your REALTOR® is maximizing marketing and advertising to get your home in front of as many people as possible.

WHAT IS RADON?
Radon is a radioactive gas released from the normal decay of uranium in rocks and soil. It is an invisible, odorless, tasteless gas that seeps up through the ground and diffuses into the air. In a few areas, depending on local geology, radon dissolves into ground water and can be released into the air when the water is used. Radon gas usually exists at very low levels outdoors. Radon can enter homes through cracks in floors, walls, or foundations, and collect indoors. It can also be released from building materials, or from water obtained from wells that contain radon. Radon levels can be higher in homes that are well insulated, tightly sealed, and/or built on uranium-rich soil. Because of their closeness to the ground, basement and first floors typically have the highest radon levels.

Any home can have a radon problem. This means new and old homes, well-sealed and drafty homes, and homes with or without basements. In fact, you and your family are most likely to get your greatest radiation exposure at home. That is where you spend most of your time.  Nearly 1 out of every 15 homes in the United States is estimated to have an elevated radon level (4 pCi/L or more). Your home inspection may want to include Radon checks. There are also kits available at many of your local hardware stores that you can purchase to test yourself.

WHAT MAKES UP CLOSING COSTS?
Some closing fees may vary depending on the purchase agreement. Some elements are paid up front ahead of closing, some may be rolled into closing, or negotiated with buyer. Some basic fees to look out for ahead of closing and on the sellers side of the net seller settlement statement.

  • Attorney’s or escrow fees
  • Property taxes (to cover the tax period to date)
  • Principle and Interest up to date of closing
  • Recording fees
  • Survey fee (if applicable)
  • Title insurance
  • Tax Stamp Fee
  • Any documentation preparation fees
  • Home Warranty
  • Home Inspection
  • Appraisal

LEAD PAINT DISCLOSURE
The seller must complete a Disclosure of Information on Lead-based pain and/or lead based pain hazards for any home built prior to 1978. It simply asks the seller to disclose any known use of existing lead-based paint or lead based paint hazards. It also requires any purchaser to acknowledge the received of this document and received all information listed above and to receive a pamphlet titled Protect Your Family from Lead in Your Home. Certain areas of communities may be more prone to Lead-Based paint than others, so make sure to talk to your REALTOR®.

SELLER PROPERTY DISCLOSURE – WHAT IS IT AND DO I NEED TO COMPLETE ONE
Nebraska Law requires the seller to complete a Seller Property Condition Disclosure Statement for all residential Real Property. Regardless of For Sale By Owner or using a licensed real estate professional, you are required to complete this form. (NEB. REV STAT. 76-2,120) This document is a disclosure of the condition of the real property known by the seller on the date on which this statement is signed to the best of their knowledge. It should not be accepted as a substitute for any inspection or warranty that the purchase may wish to obtain.