By Carol Hardy • 2018 President

 

There are few things in life that cause the greatest stress we can be under; two are selling your house and divorce. Together they compound the situation; but the end goal needs to remain in focus for all parties involved.

Taking some advice from www.realtytimes.com, there are a few basic tips. Though they won’t magically create a pleasant process, they can help avoid obstacles that can otherwise derail the objective of your transaction and transition!

1. Make agreements ahead of time

A very good move is to put every agreement in writing before you put the property on the market. Make an agreement that you will sell the house for a specific price and only accept an offer that is over a certain amount. Don’t leave this to chance because in a divorce, you don’t know what may happen. Having a written agreement gives attorneys something to work with and protects you.

Make sure your attorney is familiar with real estate law in your area, assuring they know the local legal requirements. If they aren’t, get a referral who is and contact them.

2. Buyers should always work with a REALTOR

Buyers who think selling their house on their own during this time are incorrect. Working with a REALTOR will lessen the stress because using an outside adviser will help avoid conflict during this time. A professional REALTOR who knows legal requirements, needed documentation, the area’s market to get both parties the best price and fields all the transaction’s progress is best for all concerned.  As an agent, you need to make sure you know exactly what is going on and that you are prepared to deal with the situation that may not be very pleasant.

3. Build contingency plans

What if something goes wrong? Who makes repairs during the inspection? As an agent, you need to make sure to help negotiate these with the buyer. It is a good idea to pre-plan these in writing so there is no surprise. This will help establish which party is best to resolve any issues quickly.

4. Present a united front

Encourage your clients to work together, regardless of why they are divorcing. This will help you make sure everything is taken care of and your clients are not undermining each other which is highly necessary for a smooth transaction. Make your clients understand that focusing on the end result (i.e. money in their pocket) benefits both of them to move on for the future.

5. Stay calm

This is a time of high emotion. The client’s home likely holds memories, both good and bad. Removing emotion from the equation will assist your client most during this time. Remind them they are satisfying a legal requirement. There is time after the sale to feel emotional. Looking at the home sale strictly as a financial matter will keep those emotions in check.

So, remind your clients the importance of putting everything in writing, to remain calm and mature and reassure them that it’s best to let the professionals  (i.e. you, the agent and your partners) do their job with the business aspect. Before they know it, they will close on their home and can begin rebuilding their life!  RL