10 tips to make your move easy.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Sunny Isles Beach, Fl. Nothing can bring either joy or sometimes panic like the moment when your home goes under contract. It can really go both ways depending on how you tackle it. I heard people speaking of it like the "stress of going thru a divorce" and from many others as feeling a "liberating experience". hmmm... now that I think about it, there is some relation between both statements.
Anyway. In fact getting ready to move can be a great personal enhancement experience. This is the time when you will have to listen to your agent more than ever.
Without further getting myself in trouble, here we go:
1) KNOW THE TIMING OF YOUR CONTRACT: Contracts in some occasions can get cancelled for different reasons. Imagine having in motion your arrangements for moving and at the last moment a contingency of cancellation happens. Is key to have your agent to map the dates until when the buyer can cancel the contract to plan in a timely manner.
2) Know where are you going after closing: If you are selling, you surely remember there was a time you purchased a home. So you will have to do some leg work in either qualifying for a loan or using savings for a down payment or a security deposit. Don't procrastinate.
3) BE REALISTIC ABOUT YOUR POSSIBILITIES: Either if you are downsizing or upgrading, have in mind that you will have to adapt to a new reality. Is good to start scouting for possible homes to move in or a new area early. It will help you to mature ideas, adapt and relief the feelings of possible panic you might experience when you get by this stage on the contract.
4) KNOW HOW MUCH YOU OWE ON YOUR HOME: Association fees, mortgages, liens or taxes past due can become an issue sometimes. Be aware that all these debt will have to be paid at the closing table out of your tab. Good faith estimates are usually provided by agents but will not reflect hidden debt or accumulated association fess owed.
5) ASK YOUR ACCOUNTANT AND YOUR LAWYER: If you have tax or legal issues or doubts, give your accountant or your lawyer a call just to make sure you are ok. Your agent will not be able to assist you on these issues and most of the times will refuse to do it, even if knows the answer, just to avoid the typical "...my agent said this and that..." so frequently used to blame agents when something goes wrong.
6) PACK SMART: I recommend to avoid falling into "getting extra storage" champagne dreams, so...
  • Start by walking your home pinpointing the stuff and furniture that is either broken or you don't use anymore. Just DONATE or THROW IT AWAY. Same goes for cloth and shoes. What doesn't fit now will not fit you in a year neither. Keep that wedding dress, girl.
  • Package by love: Pack first your important personal belongings. So you can always get rid of something that doesn't fit in the truck. At the end, you don't need that much, but you need to keep your essentials safe.
  • Protect and package extra well your irreplaceable stuff. Art, photos, books, awards, records are somehow evidence you are alive and did something with your life. So protect it and package it first. I ‘ve seen someone leaving behind a College Degree for using her energy in packing other stuff.
  • GET HELP TO MOVE: There are plenty of available resources that for a couple of hundred dollars will make your life easier. By the way, your friends will not show up to carry your stuff, ok? Breaking your back is not worth it. So get a ‘man and a truck’. Calculate between $ 350 and $ 500 budget for this service. Reserve this service in advance. A deposit to hire and the balance after move is complete. Super Mario did my move last time and was a great experience.
  • PODS are great for temporary storage. They pickup early before your closing and store the POD until you can move in somewhere else. Great relief.
7) VACATE AND CLEAN UP AT LEAST ONE DAY BEFORE CLOSING: Closing day will have one additional last step: the “walk thru inspection”. Scary as it sounds, buyer will show up and walk the property to make sure is all there before they sign the papers. So try to have the property as presentable as possible. Do not remove appliances or essentials neither leave furniture or “the piano” behind unless negotiated in writing with the buyer.

8) HOLD THE MAIL: Another step on the process. Go online and make sure the mail will be delivered to your new location or will be placed on hold. Sometimes takes up to 6 weeks to get mail in some ZIP codes. So update by hand credit card, bank account addresses because you might not get the statements for a while.

9) Transfer or cancel utilities: For electric, is nice to leave at least a couple of days of electric on the premises to give extra time to the new buyer to arrive with the a/c on. You can open a new address without having to pay additional deposits. Just transfer the account. Same with cable, phones and internet. Water companies in some counties are tough, so make sure you disconnect services with them, or they will place a lien on the property.

10) Rest and breath: I realize that I kind of sound like my grandmother here. If you do the planning in a reasonable way, I assure you you will have a great life experience moving. Sleep and rest plenty and be reasonable about your expectations. One way or the other everything just comes into place. But is best is you follow steps to eliminate anxiety.

Ok. This 10 tips ended up sounding like 90 tips.
I wish you a happy transaction and a best move ever!

Fernando Pettineroli
Listing agent
December 2017

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