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"Selling?" How to Keep Your Golf Home Safe and Secure

When you sell your golf home, it's easy to get caught-up in the excitement of the sale and the prospect of finding a great new home. It's during this time, most transitioning homeowners are focused nearly solely on finding and buying their new property, with their old home a fond memory. However, what might otherwise be a fond memory could well become a nightmare reality that revisits itself without warning, or, at least it seems.

There are many facets to selling real estate, and of course, these go way beyond just marketing one property, complete with hosting open houses, and securing financing for the new place. The unenviable task of moving will be a necessary part of the whole process. What's not obvious by its lack of attention is the home you've just sold. That residence is still yours, despite having accepted a purchase offer. Until the closing is completed and ownership transferred, you are responsible for it, a kind of fiduciary duty to the buyer.

Because you will be the responsible party should something break, the property suffering from natural forces, or be vandalized. Such a precarious condition may well be the cause of much stress and financial hardship if something does happen and that's why you have to take steps to ensure that the home is safe until the buyer takes legal possession.


Things to Do before You Move Out

One of the most precarious positions sellers find themselves experiencing is having to time-out the transition from one house to the next. To avoid paying two mortgages or settling for a new home you don't want, you necessarily have to strategically plan out your move.

When people think about moving, they tend to focus on actual stuff--possessions like furniture, clothing, cooking apparel, toys, electronics, and so on. What is most overlooked are those things which are intangible, like a gym membership, kids' school records, and the like. It's only after these become an issue do they present a problem. Utilities are another intangible, but most homeowners don't overlook these, but do put-off updating their drivers' licenses and vehicle license plate.
"When properties are left vacant or are unoccupied, steps should be taken to prevent or mitigate losses due to heating system, electrical system, water damage, vandalism or other causes. Notify the police department that the property will be vacant, and provide emergency notification phone numbers." --Travelers.com

As moving day draws nigh, it's time to pare down on food, particularly those stored in the freezer and in the pantry. Eat those staples first and don't buy more; instead, consume all the frozen goods and eat and/or donate dry goods to empty out the pantry to keep moving time and expenses down. Should you be moving a good distance, check your prescriptions and if needed, get a refill or speak with your doctor about a referral for a refill so you don't have to scramble to get a refill at the last moment.
Steps to Take to Keep Your Property Safe

If you are going to move-out of your home before it sells to move into another property you've already purchased, you'll want to take steps to keep it safe while it sits unoccupied. Here's how you keep your old home secure when it's vacant:

Ask neighbors to watch your home. Many people do this as a matter of habit when leaving for a vacation and it should be done when you move out. Having extra sets of eyes and ears will certainly be a great source to alert you and/or the local authorities if anything happens.

Keep the lawn well-maintained. One big telltale sign a home is vacant is the grass is growing unchecked. Have the lawn mowed regularly or do it yourself, if possible.

Do not let mail and promotion material pile-up. Another signal a home is empty is when mail is bursting out of the mailbox and the entryway is littered with flyers. Have neighbors pick these up and forward your mail to your new address.

Make repairs as needed. This goes to both selling your home and to safety. If its aesthetic, then it could be enough to put-off otherwise interested buyers. If it is functional, it will not only be a deal killer, but one that presents more problems.

Keep the driveway occupied. Constantly unoccupied driveways mean no one is home and to a thief, it's a welcome sign. Give your neighbors permission to park in your driveway and they'll welcome the extra space while keeping your home safe.

Two other things you ought to do to make the property look as though it is occupied is to keep the window treatments closed, but the lights on during the evenings. You don't have to keep electrical service flowing, but you can pull off the charade by buying a few inexpensive battery-powered lights and timers to set for appropriate times.

For more information about selling or buying, please contact me.

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Dennis Boyle, The Golf Home Pro

941-400-5584

Info@SuncoastGolfHomes.com

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