Seller staying in the home for two days after closing

HappyladiApril 18, 2009

My daughter put an offer in on a house and it was accepted. The seller wants to stay in the house for two days after closing. The reason she gave is that she is concerned that the sale might fall through. Her son in law is a lawyer and I bet he recommended it.

My daughter is willing to allow this but with a $500 refundable deposit just in case. She is willing not to charge any rent. Her son in law thinks she should be allowed to stay without any rent or deposit.

My daughter is pre approved and is putting 20% down. There is no special reason for this woman to believe the sale might fall through.

What do you think? Allowing this without a refundable deposit seems wrong.

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Of course the seller's SIL is recommending that, but in all likelihood your daughter is in a buyer's market and should just say no, and that she wants possession on the day of closing. If she allows the seller to stay, she should get rent and ask for a deposit.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2009 at 3:26PM
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I wouldn't buy any house with a rent-back agreement no matter how in love with the house I was. Do a forum search on the horror stories of allowing rent-backs and have your daughter rethink letting the woman stay. I'd advise your daughter to tell the seller your daughter's attorney said "no". If your daughter does not have a good Real Estate Attorney I urge her to get one regardless of what is customary in your area. It will be the best $500 - $1,000 she ever spent.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2009 at 3:34PM
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Also while reading the search results, you'll see it is the norm in some areas. I agree about getting an attorney, especially since the other side has one.

FWIW, I am not nuts about someone staying in a house I bought, since it's hard to evict if needed. I also would not let someone stay in a house without rent. I would also want some sort of escrow, at least $5,000; then would add an eviction clause as well as the seller having to pay attorney fees if you do have to evict.

I understand why she wants to stay with all of the horror stories online. In this market as long as my i's were dotted and my t's crossed, I might allow it. It would actually give me more time to get movers and whatever else.

Your daughter also needs to find out about insurance and if the company she's using would insure the house if they knew the seller was staying in it. You also need to find out if the seller has to keep some sort of coverage while there in case they damage something; hurt themselves.

A last minute thought I had.. how would one work the utilities in a case like this? Sellers usually turn them off as they are going to the closing table.. or at least that's what we did. Our buyer didn't know they had to call to turn them on, and it almost stopped the closing because they were ticked there was no power, etc. If I had a house phone, that would surely get turned off.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2009 at 3:48PM
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We've stayed past closing in two previous homes and allowed the seller to stay past closing in one home we purchased. In some areas it is not abnormal and as a matter of fact is the norm. In this market, I too would be afraid the buyer wouldn't make it to closing and would want a few days at least past closing .

In each instance that we stayed, we had to put a large deposit in escrow as well as pay a pre established "rental" amount for each day we stayed past closing. The amount we had in escrow was substantial and there were some pretty severe penalties for not moving out by the agreed upon date. We also had two walk throughs, one before closing and one when we moved out so that the buyers could determine whether we had damaged anything in the interim between closing and move out.

Utilities remained in our name until the day of move out.

I personally would agree to the seller staying past closing, but would definitely ask for a large deposit to be placed into escrow as well as a well worded contract detailing the circumstances that would cause the deposit to be forfeit.

A friend of mine was burned on one buyer not showing up to closing, so on the subsequent sale to another buyer she asked to remain through closing. The buyer was adamant that she not stay past closing, so the compromise reached was that the buyer would increase their earnest money to an amount substantial enough to give my friend the confidence that the deal was going through or there would be a substantial amount of the buyer's money tied up.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2009 at 4:00PM
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I don't know if it is common here, I have never heard of it being done, though.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2009 at 4:50PM
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I cannot imagine asking to stay in a house after someone else has purchased it -- this seems ridiculous to me. Could the buyer ask to move in 2 days BEFORE closing and say she needs to do this to make sure the seller REALLY wants to sell it?

    Bookmark   April 18, 2009 at 4:55PM
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When we bought this house the seller was to move out by closing. Just before closing realtor called and said seller needed to stay 2 weeks after close.
We agreed because of the circumstances. Seller was an aged woman, with dementia, and her nephews would be moving her and needed the extra time, as they all lived 3 hours away.
No regrets on our part. Go with your gut on this one. Yes, you could let her stay and have some $$ kept in escrow til she is moved out. We didn't, but that was us.
Kathy G in MI

    Bookmark   April 18, 2009 at 9:05PM
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When we bought our first home the sellers were building a house, and had a delay. We agreed to rent their house back to them for two months after the closing, and had everything written up appropriately by our lawyer.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2009 at 10:58PM
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I think it's a little different renting a house back for a month or two then just allowing the seller to stay a couple of extra days.

My mom rented her house back to the seller for over 3 months. This allowed the seller to stay until school was out and it gave my mom some extra time to sell her own house and move.

However she discovered the wall oven didn't work a couple of weeks after she moved in. It worked at inspection. It was expensive to fix.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2009 at 11:52PM
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I let the seller stay in my home for several months to find a new home since his sale fell through. It was a disaster since he broke the step to the garage when moving out his heavy sofa that he dropped, dented the gutters around the garage (well at least the President of my Association blamed him and charged me... she claims she saw him do this), burnt a pizza upside down in my over (was angry at me for forcing him to sell me the place after he changed his mind and did not show up at the closing... I was nice enough to let him stay which my lawyer left off several monthly feels so it cost me more for my mortgage and PMI insurance and home insurance than I got refunded each month), took over the wands for the mini blinds, etc. He refused to pay for the damages and his lawyer was his best friend costing him nothing and just kept writing me these harassment letters while I was trying to move in during my tax season.

My lawyer got a stroke and it was my tax season with none of my home office equipment yet set up so I was under so much stress. I had no time to take him to small claims court and his lawyer wanted us to meet in small claims court if I did not release his refund. To hire a new lawyer and waste a day in court his lawyer knew would cost me a lot so I had to release the security.

Also before the new closing date, my lawyer had told me to find a new place since it could take over a year to evict him despite having a contract that I did everything abiding my the contract including paying my points and having the utilities set up and my phone number in the yellow pages for my new home. I would have lost the 2.5 points I paid for my rate on my mortgage since mortgage rates were higher then and lost the fees I paid to put my new home office number in the yellow pages and so much other work related to the buy and mortgage.

I looked and found nothing that had the same layout that was perfect for my home office and the great location that his home had that I bought at market price. I was very sad and ready to just lose the almost $5,000 in points I paid and save money again for a new place the year after.

When my realtor found out he owned a rental property that was vacant and a judge would force him to move out, I fought for the home that I fell in love with (and still do 12 years later). It was my idea to rent him the place until he found a home as long as it was by the end of the year. My lawyer did not like the idea and he was right. I was trying to be nice.

Hence that is my sad story on letting a seller stay after closing...

    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 12:51AM
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The buyers of our last home allowed us to rent back for a couple of weeks after closing. I think that among people of good will, there shouldn't be a problem. As it turns out, we ended up becoming good friends with them and see them on a semi-regular basis several years later.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 1:51AM
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I can't imagine leaving before the house is closed on! What if the buyer backs out at the last minute? It is a common thing!
It would cost me about $10,000 to have my stuff moved to my condo down south- am I supposed to just eat that cost if a buyer backs out? I then also have to pay another $10,000 to have the stuff moved back!

    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 3:06AM
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This seems to be a regional issue with exceptions allowing for unique personal situations.

If a seller, like ilmbg, is adamant about not moving out before closing they should ABSOLUTELY put that in the listing agreement. "Seller REQUIRES 48 hours to vacate the property after closing." Then, people who do not like that scenario can avoid wasting their time considering purchasing the property. And it WILL turn many potential buyers is evidenced by the many threads we have here discussing the issue.

Personally, I wouldn't allow it without a substantial deposit, a second walk-thru inspection, & even then I'd probably not agree to such a clause barring some unavoidable last minute circumstance. We also have been burned badly by a seller refusing to vacate.

In my area, it's not common for a seller to stay after closing. The keys are transferred at the closing table & buyers normally have moving trucks waiting at the curb to start unloading or crews lined up to start remodeling.

I sure wouldn't call buyers backing out at the last minute "common" as the above poster has suggested. Sure, it happens but "common"? Nope.

For every story about a buyer refusing to close at the last minute there's another story about a seller not vacating, damaging the property, and/or causing some other type loss to the buyers. Business transactions carry some inherent amount of risk to all parties.


    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 8:02AM
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Here's another that would not allow renters after closing, nor do the lawyers in the area recommend it. It is just not worth the hassle or insurance risk. I would not consider purchasing a house that had this as a condition. NancyLouise

    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 10:30AM
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We did a rent back when we sold our house in the DC area two years ago. We were building a house in Texas that was going to be completed in June. The buyers were moving back to states from Germany, were military, as were we, and they wouldn't be arriving until July 1st. So in our case it was a win-win. We did put a sizable amount in escrow which was released after the re-inspection from their realtor.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 12:21PM
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I would do it but require any funds going to the owner to be placed in escrow until the property is vacated and has been satisfactorily inspected that the condition is the same as it was on closing day by your daughter.

I would also charge rent for that time. In my area they usually take what the new owners monthly mortgage is and divide it by the number of days in a month and that is then the daily rate the seller pays.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 12:35PM
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The first thing you need to do is stop calling it a 'trent back.'

While it can be hard to evict a tenant, it is easy to have a trespasser removed.
The last thing you want is for any terms of state, or city landlord-tenant law to come into play.

Do not even call it 'renting,' a 'lease,', a 'lease back' it anything hinting at that.

You set a very large amount of cash aside from settlement, set the daily damages for them remaining at what your new mortgage cost you per day (PITI), and then double or triple the daily damages if they are not out as agreed.

You inspect the property on the day of closing, and then again before the funds are released.
They are responsible for ANY damage that occurs, and you will have it repaired and deducted from the funds held at settlement.

They will be responsible for any charges you incur for storage of household goods and hotel charges if they are not out by the agreed date.

It is not hard to make it VERY painful for them to stay past the agreed date, and any damages found after they move out.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 1:19PM
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In my neck of the woods, a Seller wanting to say in the house for any length of time after closing for fear of it falling through is about as legitimate as them wanting to stay in the house because it's scheduled to rain on their moving day.

I would say no way. Definitely your daughter should get an attorney. I think it would be fair to charge $1,000.00 per day for every day she wants to stay, arrangements for the Seller's vacate date up front, Seller pays fees for new locks/keys upon vacating, plus arrangements up front about utilities, damages, cleaning, and overall condition of the property the day the Seller is officially out.

It would be your daughter's home and responsibility for any & all expenses the second the closing happens. I agree with Brickeye...make it $$hurt$$ for the seller to stay with the details made known up front.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 3:25PM
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I'm sorry, I'm a banker and I've never heard of this type of arrangement. Yes on a few months rent back, but the owner (and mortgage holder) needs to take possession of a home at closing. You can't hold escrow funds, because to do so clouds the title and the lender won't allow this.

Frankly...I think it's nuts. How do you do your final walkthrough on the house if they haven't vacated? I would never consider buying a home this way, and never consider selling it and asking for such a thing. Get a storage unit or pack a van, and expect that if it falls through at that late stage the costs will be recouped in earnest money...but never never never buy with an arrangement like this. It's nuts!

    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 10:02PM
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It's a pretty common agreement here to ask for an extra day or two after closing (days, not months!). It's written into the offer negotiations. It's really just as a precaution for if the sale falls through. You don't want to have everything packed and moved just to find out the sale didn't go through and then you have to pay to move everything back and and unpack it. That being said, most people don't actually stay the extra days. Once it gets close enough to the sale, it's USUALLY pretty obvious if the sale is going to go through or not.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2009 at 9:23AM
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The seller's (or buyer's) temporary lease spells out the terms under which the seller or buyer is occupying the home;
without a written agreement, the party in possession could claim almost anything, & the adverse party would have to respond to the claim.

It's so important that, in Texas, the contract contains language stating that any occupancy by seller after closing or buyer before closing constitutes a lease.

I always recommend that the seller give possession after closing to maintain the "balance of power".

I've heard stories of sellers showing up at closing, moving van already on the road, only to be met by buyers who "can't come up with" whatever they think the seller will endure, & they need to re-negotiate the contract.

Having the sellers move out before closing to be sure that they really want to sell is not comparable.

However, if the principals agreed to buyer possession prior to closing, the Buyer's Temporary Residential Lease would be added to the contract.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2009 at 11:32AM
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...forgot to say that seller or buyer occupying the house for a lengthier time before or after closing isn't common, but sometimes there are reasons.

Several years ago, a local builder sold his house & leased it back from the buyer for (seems like) 6 months while the buyer worked out his employment contract in another state; it worked for both parties, because it gave the builder time to build his new home, & he didn't have to move twice.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2009 at 11:43AM
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I'm a banker also (construction lender, commercial loan officer, & work-out officer).

You made the following comment, "...but the owner (and mortgage holder) needs to take possession of a home at closing. You can't hold escrow funds, because to do so clouds the title and the lender won't allow this."

I've done lending in seven states & that was untrue in all seven.

"Use Agreements" can & do occur as needs dictate. Escrows can be & are held as needs dictate. Sometimes, funding will be delayed until the escrow is released by not always.

Nowhere have I ever encountered any statute or bank regulation that requires a purchaser to physically occupy the premises if that's what you meant? The "Use Agreement" is, basically, a short-term lease that may (or, may not) require a monetary compensation. For instance, when we purchased our current home the holder of a second lien refused to release (insufficient sale proceeds to clear the lien). Our moving truck was already on the way from out-of-state & due to arrive for unloading that afternoon (Friday). The seller gave us a "Use Agreement" for the weekend (free of compensation) & we closed on Monday after a weekend of negotiations with the second lien holder (he ended up taking a junior position on another property owned by the seller). Our loan documents were signed on that Friday. Funds were not disbursed until Monday afternoon. So, in essence, there was a 2-day escrow. Not uncommon at all. Not usual, either. Just a routine part of banking.

Oh, we also had a longer running escrow on this closing I almost forgot about...the seller had to finish the fencing. We escrowed $5,000 & that stayed open about six weeks. No big deal. The title company held the funds & dispersed to the seller when he provided receipts & lien releases from the fencing company. Again, common...especially with construction lending.


    Bookmark   April 20, 2009 at 12:11PM
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I think that this is regional. I have bought & sold houses in Calif. & they have been available to the buyer immediately after closing.

When I bought a home in Colorado, I was told by the realtor that it was customary there that the seller have 72 hours after closing to vacate. I said that was really new to me & he told me that I should have made it clear in the offer if I had wanted immediate possession. (Of course, that was one of the things that he was getting paid for -- & he should have pointed out that point in the beginning).

Anyway, the seller stayed for 72 hours after the closing -- no harm done. But I'd advise others to be sure to put that in the offer, if they want immediate possession.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2009 at 11:40AM
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We have always given and received 3 days to move out. I think it is regional. We never had a problem with it. Once we did a rent back until our children finished out the school year. That was upfront in the purchase and sale agreement.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2009 at 1:15PM
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igloochic, despite your experience, two days is common in many areas, obviously not yours. But it is not nuts, nor disallowed by banks.
It is not a lease or rentback as brickeye said, your above post refers to a lease agreement, the OP was not talking about a lease back, only possession. Ownership is not changed by taking possession in 48 hours. There is no lease agreement.
I've bought and sold in different area of CA, one area it was common to give possession 48 or 72 hours after closing. Another 5pm is common.
I've never as a buyer or seller, had a problem with final walk through with furnishings. Personally, I will not vacate my house before I get my funds when selling.
Also, holding funds in escrow doesn't cloud title.
Your experience in your state may be different, but what you say so emphatically is just not true in all states.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2009 at 9:50AM
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"Just managed compliance for years...and in this state, and all others, if you apply for a first mortgage claiming it's your primary residence it's a violation of HMDA to lease it back..."

That is why you do not call it a lease.
Do NOT establish a 'lease agreement' or anything that smacks of a lease.
It is 'holding over' if you need a term to use, but NOT a lease.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2009 at 2:07PM
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What they finally agreed to: The seller has two days after closing to move her stuff out. She pays a $500.00 deposit. She and my daughter do a walk through together the second evening, if everything is okay my daughter returns the $500.00. I am not sure about the utilities.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2009 at 2:21PM
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Talked with an RE attorney that works fir HUD.
HMDA establishes reporting requirements for lenders and does not say anything about how transactions are conducted.

While the lenders may object for other reasons to 'leasing back' (like getting the owner occupied interest rate on an investment property) it is not prohibited by HMDA.

Attempting to use a reporting law to set conditions of sale is not correct.
While it may cause a reporting issue, that does not make the transaction in and of itself illegal.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2009 at 2:03PM
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I'm in MD. 6 years ago we were having a house built. We sold our house in Feb, closed in March, and rented back (yes the realtor called it a rent back) until the house was completed in April. Our realtor said it was done all the time.
The buyer had no problem with this, in fact, they would have liked us to have rented back a little longer, because we wanted the rent back to end April 15, and their lease wasn't up til the 30th of May.

We had an insurance policy in place to cover any appliance breakdowns, but there weren't any. Never heard from anyone about any issues after we moved out, so I guess they were happy.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 8:18AM
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When I bought my current home 6 years ago, seller wanted to stay 2 extra days. I did not want to do it, but my DH was willing. In TX, there are documents to cover this kind of situation, but I had never had this come up with any other homes I've owned. We ended up doing what Brickeye suggested. Charged 3 x PITI per day, non refundable and they had to keep insurance in place. We did not do a walk through before they left. We had already closed, but I wish we had. There was some damage to a bathroom marble counter I did not notice on final walk-through that was there after they moved out.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 2:39AM
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I live in the upper Midwest and have never heard of 2 days or 72 hours being the "norm" after closing to move in. When we purchased homes we got the keys at closing and headed out to the parking lot where our moving truck was packed and ready!

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 4:56PM
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I hope there isn't damage MORE than $500. WHy should your DD refund the money? Basically, the seller is staying on your DD's dime and not paying a red cent for it.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 7:07PM
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What in the world can a seler do in those two days that they could not do in the previous 45 days that the house is under contract?
I would not allow a total stranger to live in my home, use my appliances and utilities even if it was the custom.

BYW... anything after 7 days here in NC has to be drawn up as a lease agreement.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2009 at 8:09PM
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As a conscientious seller, I would not want to stay. I think that you're just inviting Murphy in & could end up in some rather sticky situations.

When I sold my house in Calif., we had the house tented for termites approx. a week before closing. When the gas co. employee came to relight the pilot lights, the water heater pilot light kept going out. I had a plumber (realtor's recommended guy) come & he replaced a part. It stayed lit for about two days & the plumber was working on the water heater as I was packing the rental car to go to the airport.
I left all the paper work for the new owners on the table -- with the guarantee of the plumber that he would get it fixed & I also explained that the realtor had recommended this plumber & he should be helpful in case of problems.

So, no I would not stay after closing no matter how difficult it would be.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2009 at 2:30PM
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happyladi -- that seems like a reasonable solution. I probably would have made the amount much larger, but what's done is done.

One way to handle it is to leave a large amount in escrow that is not released until after they've moved out and you've had a second walk through. That way the seller is also protected because you can't just keep your money. Not sure what the house price was, but I might have asked for 1-2% of the purchase price, plus a seller credit of 2 days of PITI.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2009 at 9:36PM
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"I left all the paper work for the new owners on the table -- with the guarantee of the plumber that he would get it fixed & I also explained that the realtor had recommended this plumber & he should be helpful in case of problems."

I would have refused to settle if purchasing.

the house should be in the same condition as the data thte contract was signed.
If you need more time to affect a repair I would have delayed settlement, demand that enough $$ be escrowed to redo any repair 'in process,' or demanded enough money to have the repair done to my satisfaction.

If you failed to pay the plumber the new owner is on the hook.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2009 at 1:52PM
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Brickeyee, do you *ever* just say, "I'd like to handle it this way" or do you always 'demand' & 'refuse'?

It was just a water heater problem, & the seller agrees that it was to be cured at her expense & evidently did so.

(& did Susan have the water heater problem prior to closing or after?)

    Bookmark   May 6, 2009 at 2:42PM
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The last time we moved, I had already rented an apartment for the transition, but I still didn't move out entirely until after we closed. That was partly due to the sellers themselves. They mentioned to me that the house they sold in Chicago had failed 3 times to make it to the settlement table, twice failing on the last day. It had never occured to me up to then that a sale would fail at that late date. It also worried me that the sellers having experienced themselves would be less hesitant to do that to someone else. I also knew that they were buying my house because it was the only one for sale in my neighborhood and not because they were in love with it. Having 3 days to clean without the furniture present was also very helpful. I worked on that even while they were there.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2009 at 6:10PM
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The water heater pilot light went out two days before closing. As the seller, I did feel that it should be repaired at my expense. Since my realtor was also the buyer's realtor, I asked his office to send the plumber. The work was guaranteed for 1 year -- I paid $200.00 for the repair work. On closing day I awoke to find no hot water. I also was scheduled to fly home to Iowa at noon. I had no time to do anything but call the plumber who came right away.
As I said, I had a guarantee in writing that the repair would be good for one year. (I had also purchased a home warranty for the buyer). I left all the paperwork and a note explaining what had happened. I suggested that should there be problems, the realtor (who had received a double commission & who had recommended the plumber) would be the one to help the buyer.

Anyway, it went just fine. The closing went well and I believe that the buyer had plenty of hot water.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2009 at 6:57PM
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"Brickeyee, do you *ever* just say, "I'd like to handle it this way" or do you always 'demand' & 'refuse'?

It was just a water heater problem, & the seller agrees that it was to be cured at her expense & evidently did so.

(& did Susan have the water heater problem prior to closing or after?)"

I have been in business long enough,and had enough problems over the years buying and selling properties to not take anyone word for anything any more.

While Susan appears to have made the repair and paid for it a less honest person could have bounced the check to the plumber and been no were to be found.
The new owner would be forced to pay, or face a mechanics lien on the property.
I have gone after people who stripped houses after the contract was signed.
They figured I would be forced to close despite the massive damage they had done.

Not everyone keeps their word.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2009 at 8:35PM
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My point in telling about my experience was to show how a (relatively) minor problem can cause such turmoil depending on the timing of the problem.

As the seller, I think I did the right thing -- calling plumber, paying him, and receiving a guarantee in writing. I did not inform the buyer (two days prior to closing). I thought: Problem solved.
Of course, Murphy entered the picture on the day of closing when there was no hot water. I called the plumber, informed the realtor & left all the paperwork on the kitchen table.
I had a plane to catch.
I had no time to inform buyers (and I thought this was the realtor's job anyway) The realtor had dual agency and was also representing the buyer. I had used the realtor's plumber and I felt that this could best be handled by the realtor, if there were problems later.
Since the realtor received a $30,000 commission on the closing day, I don't believe that he advised his buyer to "refuse to go through the closing" because of a hot water heater problem. I'm sure that he would have gladly bought a new water heater to make sure that that closing went through.

As I said, my point is that I would not stay in a house after closing (as the seller) -- this experience caused me enough worry and distress.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2009 at 11:17AM
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Of course you continue to be at risk of things failing, just like before you sold the place.

If you do not have another house vacant to move into before the settlement date it can be an issue.

Storing three 40 foot trailers from a move, even overnight, is not an option most of the time.

The movers I use send two 40 foot trucks, and a crew of 6 men.
They will start at 6:00 AM and go until the move is finished.
If there is more than two trucks of 'stuff' one is quickly unloaded and returns for another batch.
The cost of keeping a truck for two days is rather high.

Life has risks.
The place could burn down also, or get hit by lightning, or a freak flood.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2009 at 11:32AM
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Our sellers got about 6 free days from my husband. He bought this house one year before we were married, and was way too nice. Their realtor called and asked twice for an extension and he granted it both times. The realtor didn't even offer any rent back money, and my DH didn't ask for any!!
These sellers did only one thing on the list of 8 repairs agreed upon after inspection. Of course my too nice husband also didn't do a walk through at all! Ask me why I handle all of this stuff now, and yes, I'm tough. Given a chance, people will definitely put the screws to you.

Had it been me, I'd have made sure the walk through was done, and wouldn't have gone to closing until the repairs were made. And yes, they would have paid dearly for those extra days. Every single time I've "trusted" someone I've gotten burned.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2009 at 3:08PM
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I would like to know the Texas law on the number of days a buyer is allowed to back-out after closing. What are the rules/laws governing it?

If it is 3 days, then I can give seller 2 days to vacant or I will/may rescind closing! Is this possible?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2009 at 12:29PM
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I am not an attorney & this is not intended to be legal advice,

Right of recission applies to certain contracts;
the purpose is to protect the consumer from impulse buys offered by such entities as encyclopedia salesmen.

You cannot "rescind" a completed closing.

Your date of possession is spelled out in the contract;
if you agreed to allow the seller 3 days, you can't threaten them before they've had their 3 days.

If the seller doesn't give you possession as agreed, you have to evict them, which is why the Seller's Temporary Lease is so important;
it spells out the terms of the seller's occupancy of the house after closing, & acknowledges that the seller is now a tenant & that you are the landlord.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2009 at 2:57PM
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"If the seller doesn't give you possession as agreed, you have to evict them, which is why the Seller's Temporary Lease is so important;
it spells out the terms of the seller's occupancy of the house after closing, & acknowledges that the seller is now a tenant & that you are the landlord."

The last thing you want is a landlord-tenant relationship.
That can create more problems than it solves since you would then have to deal with any landlord-tenant laws.

You want the person holding over to be nothing more than a 'tenant at sufferance.'

They can be removed for trespassing, without invoking any landlord-tenant law.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2009 at 5:56PM
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not in Texas.

The law here was amended to protect both sellers & buyers after someone in possession evidently claimed homestead rights since there was no other document in place stating the terms under which whoever it was (could have been either) had possession of the home.

The best way to protect yourself without killing your sale or purchase is to have the agreement for occupancy/possession *in writing* in *whatever format is promulgated in your state*.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2009 at 1:59PM
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when we bought our house we were purchasing form an old man. the day we looked at it he explained tha the would require 30 days after closign so that he could move his stuff 2 states away. i agreed to this with no problem since we had to give our landlord 30 days notice before leaving and we did not want to give notice before we closed either.

well, he died prior to closing(good thing we did not give that notice!), and his son and his girlfriend moved in. he was supposed to just be there to get stuff out, but he was trying to keep the house. he used the full 30 days, the only reason he left on teh 30th day was we were literally bringing our stuff in teh front door and tossing his out the back. we also told him that 1) we had the utilities sched to be shut off that afternoon since he had not done it and 2)exterminators would be there later to fumigate and no one could come in teh house, and 3)he watched as i changed the locks on all doors. we got a key to the house at closing, and he had at least 1 key. i did not trust that he would return all keys, so i just went ahead and changed the locks to be sure. i also wiped out the garage door codes since he gave me only 1 remote to operate 2 doors, when there should have been 4.

would i do it again, HELL NO! my wife quickly forgot that 30 day agreement and every other hour was chewing me out to get them out of our house. they seemed to want to ignore it as well, and would have gladly lived there as long as i let them.

my parents rented back on a per-day basis to the previous owners of their house. their new house was supposed to be finished prior to close but was delayed about 3 weeks. they had no issues at all though, plus they were my mom's cousins though we did not know it when we all first visited the house.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2009 at 2:00PM
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*whatever format is promulgated in your state*.

While some states have 'approved' real estate contracts they do not appear to be in the majority.

The contract is whatever the seller and buyer want in it.

You do have to satisfy the basic rules of contract including reducing it to writing, describing the asset to be sold, and what consideration is to be paid.

In 30 years I have only had a problem once with a tenant staying after settlement, and a FedEx letter from my attorney had them out 24 hours latter.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2009 at 9:34PM
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I had a bad experience. We put in the offer, stating immediate occupancy, the seller accepted. A week before the close date, the realtor (nothing better than a buyer's and seller's realtor) called and said the seller was freaking out because he thought he would have a month to get out. She asked us if we could PLEASE give him 2 weeks, we said it was OK (we were planning on moving in 1 month after close anyway, to make sure that we had time to get in and do some work).

I showed up for the pre-close walkthrough, and the realtor was there. She said she didn't have a key, couldn't get in touch with the seller, and that everyone was waiting at the bank for the closing. I stood my ground and said that we must get to see the building. We walked through, and it looked pretty much like it had. She did remind us again that the seller was going to install the garage door openers (there are no springs and it's hard to open them at all) before he moved out. She rushed us out...

The closing went fine, except the seller had a screaming fit about the move out date and threatened to back out of the sale (yes, the house had been on the market for nearly 2 years and he'd had 3 sales fall through due to financing). He wanted to keep his boat in our garage for 1 month, we were fine with that.

Two weeks later, we got in the car to drive the 5 hours to the new house, and my parents also drove 5 hours (from another direction)...and I got a call on the way. It was the realtor, explaining that she'd had to hire her daughter to get him moved out, and the house was a mess, and she was going to be cleaning it.

When I got there, there was a garage full of crap, and another garage with boat furniture. Oh, and the springs and garage door opener hadn't been installed. And there was a plumbing leak upstairs, and a waste line that had been covered up in the junky basement was cracked and leaking (yes we had an inspector, he couldn't get to this part of the pipe). And there was a big hole in the floor where there had been an area rug under the bed. AND the realtor informed us that the seller had promised her daughter the hammock that was installed on our back porch (held up by 2 6x6 posts that were installed through the deck). And, the antique fireplace cover was missing.

The realtor did pay for a plumber to fix the two plumbing issues. Told me pretty much that I was SOL on the rest. Oh, and she brought me a rock with our name on it. Nice.

Then, there was the evasive smell of urine. Couldn't quite figure it out. Then, realized that the toilet brush holder was filled with this guy's urine, GROSS! Got rid of it, scrubbed the entire bathroom. Smell was still coming back. In desperation, I took the toilet off the floor, and this guy's pee was all under the toilet!!! gross!

1) I will only buy vacant houses - they are very much WYSIWYG.

2) I will never allow a seller to retain access to a property following closing.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2009 at 8:20AM
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To the OP, how is your daughter making out?
When does she close?

    Bookmark   May 21, 2009 at 8:30AM
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I've been in title/escrow for 12 years and I've DEFINITELY seen things fall apart at the last minute. When we sold we wrote in that we had two days after closing to vacate. It was in the original counter to the purchase/sale agreement. Why would I pack up my ENTIRE house only to have the thing fall through at the last minute and have to move BACK in? Trust me, it happens. Maybe it's not the most common thing, but it's not that big of a deal. It just gives the seller time to get their stuff out after closing. Thankfully, our buyer was nice enough to let us do so.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2009 at 5:27PM
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An update, my daughter closed on her house May 27th. She did a walk through with the seller on May 29th and everything looked fine.

She is busy painting some of the rooms before she moves her furniture in as all the walls were pale pink. She is discovering that painting is a LOT harder then she thought. She is thinking that pale pink might be just fine in a few of the rooms for a while. LOL

    Bookmark   June 1, 2009 at 9:26PM
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In my area the standard seems to be possession 24 hours after closing if the home is occupied. The reason for this is so the sellers have time to move belongings to a new home. With so many mortages being delayed or not closed, I don't blame her for asking, regardless of the financial situation of the buyer. I have a friend whose buyer fell through the day of closing, and it was a nightmare. She had somewhere to go, but had to unpack to restage her home.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2013 at 11:30AM
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We dont do this in Wis - never heard of it.

What am I missing here. Isnt that what the earnest money is for - if the deal falls thru then there is some compensation for the seller.

No matter what happens at closing, the seller is still having to line up either an apartment or purchase a new house to move to. So if the deal falls through, what happens? They cancel their new lease (not bloody likely) and stay in their old house? They don't move into their new house even if they're making payments? They unpack all their boxes and move back into the old house? It doesn't make sense. What exactly are the two days for - I'm just not getting it!

    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 5:03PM
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The original post is 3.5 years old.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 1:31AM
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"the original post is 3.5 years old", it is irrelevant.

The subject is still valid and all the old and new inputs are helpful.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 6:45AM
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