You are here: Home Homeowner Resources Guide to Selling Your Homestead CLT Home Selling your Home: FAQs
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You are here: Home Homeowner Resources Guide to Selling Your Homestead CLT Home Selling your Home: FAQs

Selling your Home: FAQs

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS FOR SELLERS

How much will it cost to sell my home, and how much should I expect to get for it?

There are a number of expenses that sellers should expect to pay when selling their home. These costs will be deducted from your gains on the sale of the house at closing.

You will pay half the escrow fees for the transaction (estimated $2,000) and the State Real Estate Excise Tax (or REET) for sales less than $500,000 is 1.1% of the sale price. More information on REET here https://dor.wa.gov/taxes-rates/other-taxes/real-estate-excise-tax

Taxes and property insurance will be pro-rated to the closing date, meaning you will pay taxes and insurance for that year up to the date of closing, while the buyer will take on payments accrued after that date.

If there are any unpaid taxes, ground lease or covenant fees, HOA dues, mortgage debts or other liens on the property, they will also be paid out from your gain on the sale of the home. Liens could include any unpaid debts associated with your ownership of the home, including unpaid utility bills, sewer capacity charges, or mechanics liens from unpaid contractors as well as liens placed by creditors as a result of a lawsuit (such as credit card companies or child support). If you have any concerns about possible liens on your property, contact Homestead staff for help identifying them through a title search.

Separately, Homestead will charge a fee to the buyer of your home, which helps support our work in facilitating sales and operating our stewardship program. This fee does not come out of your sale proceeds.

 

What should I do to make my home ready for sale?

Sellers must make their homes “ready” for sale, ideally before the home is listed and a buyer is found. What does this entail for a Homestead home seller?

Repairs and Deferred Maintenance

Checklist: Preparing Your Home for Sale

First, readying the home for sale means arranging needed repairs and addressing deferred maintenance issues that could cause the home to fail an inspection or give buyers cause for concern about going through with the purchase. Homestead CLT homes cannot be sold “as is”, meaning that sellers are required to make repairs that are identified in the buyer’s inspection report. However, it is in your best interest to make these repairs before you find a buyer. That way, you may apply for capital improvements credits for those repairs, and you do not risk delaying closing. Homestead staff will perform a walk-through of your home before your home goes on the market to help you identify any needed repairs or maintenance issues you may not have already addressed.

Here are some examples of common repair and maintenance items:

- Clean the chimney/wood stove and show proof they are fully operational (if applicable),

- Clean the gutters,

- Have your furnace serviced,

- Remove any moss from the roof,

- Ensure there are no plants touching the siding around the base of the house,

- Treat any pest infestations, including termites,

- Ensure that there are no leaks, rot or damage to any part of the house,

- Ensure that no smoke odors remain, or deep-clean carpeting and other surfaces to remove odors,

- Ensure all required smoke detectors are present and functional,

- Ensure all required carbon monoxide detectors are present and functional,

- Ensure all electrical outlets and lights are working. Replace light bulbs if needed

- Ensure all plumbing and electrical systems are in good working order.

Be sure to keep receipts or service records if the work isn’t obvious (like chimney cleaning or servicing of furnaces) to prove that the work was done.

Staging the Home

Readying your home for sale also means “staging” the home to make it marketable—that is, attractive to potential buyers. This is just as important a step as making repairs, and it is also required of all Homestead sellers. Click here for Tips for Staging Your Home.

There are many things you can do to make your house more attractive to potential homebuyers and therefore sell your house more quickly. Please read our  5 Tips for Marketing Your Home for helpful ideas on how to prepare your house to be marketed and sold. Homestead staff will also give you tips and instructions on how to do this for your property.

 

Why am I responsible for repairs to the home before sale? What happens if I do not make the repairs identified by Homestead CLT/the buyer’s inspection?

Being a homeowner means keeping your home in good repair. Homestead CLT homeowners are required under their ground lease or affordability covenant to maintain their home in good, safe and habitable condition and to make needed repairs as they arise. This obligation extends all the way to the closing of the sale of your home. Both Homestead CLT staff, and an independent home inspector selected by the new buyer, will have an opportunity to walk through your home before the sale to note any repairs that you must make to the home before closing. For Homestead CLT, these may include cosmetic fixes, such as painting walls or replacing mismatched or worn floor coverings, that improve the marketability of the home and make it ready for a new buyer.

If a seller cannot afford to pay for the required repairs before closing, the estimated or actual cost of those repairs may be deducted from the seller’s gains at sale.

 

What if I need to move out of town before my home is sold?

If you must move away from the King County area before your home is sold, you must immediately notify Homestead staff of your moving plans. Remember that even if you move out of town, you are required to sell your home to Homestead or another income-qualified household.

During the sale process, we will help you arrange a legally authorized representative to sign paperwork on your behalf where necessary. However, you will still be required to arrange home repairs, have the home staged, arrange for access to the home by interested buyers, inspectors, and appraisers, and be available for negotiations and other correspondence throughout the sale process.

 

● How will COVID-19 affect the process of marketing and selling my home?

Homestead staff observes all safety precautions and protocols to protect against the spread of COVID-19, including mask wearing and social distancing measures, when performing necessary on-site tasks such as home walk-throughs and inspections.

To reduce the number the amount of in-person contact, Homestead CLT staff will coordinate with a provider to prepare a 3D tour of the home to accompany the listing on our website.

While taking precautions for public health we are no longer doing open houses. Interested homebuyers will instead schedule a private showing with a Homestead staff member. In order to limit exposure we ask that the homeowners not be at the site during private showings. Please coordinate with Homestead Staff to schedule viewing times.

If you have any questions or concerns about safely marketing your home for sale, please contact us.

 

Can I hire a realtor to market my home for me?

Yes, you may hire a listing agent to market the home on your behalf. As a reminder, Homestead has an exclusive 60 days to market the home, after which you may hire a realtor.

If you are planning to purchase another home after the sale, please WAIT to submit an offer on it until you are well on your way to selling your Homestead home. The timing of the sales process is different from market-rate sales, and will not work for “contingent sales” transactions.

It is your responsibility to pay the agent’s commission for their service. The commission, which is typically 6% total of the purchase price, is paid at closing and will come out of your gain on the sale. We recommend that you work with someone who is already familiar with Homestead's program. Please contact staff for a list of agents who know our program.

 

What happens if Homestead cannot find a buyer within its 60-day exclusive marketing window?

Homestead has 60 days, beginning on the date we send the letter giving you notice of your home’s Resale Formula Price, to exclusively market the home and select the ultimate buyer from a pool of qualified applicants. That 60-day period may be extended on mutual agreement between you and Homestead.

If Homestead does not find a buyer and facilitate the sale within this exclusive marketing window, then you may hire a real estate agent to list the home on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) at the Resale Formula Price. You may continue to market the home on Homestead’s website for no additional fee. The interested buyer you choose to accept must still apply to Homestead to ensure they meet our program qualifications before they will be able to purchase the home.

If a buyer is not identified within six months of Homestead’s letter, you may sell the property without restrictions. However, in this scenario, the home’s subsidy funding must be repaid out of any proceeds of the sale, above and beyond the seller’s outstanding mortgage balance and other amounts owed.