Paperwork needed when selling your home.

There are a variety of documents that you will need when selling your home. They are needed at different times in the sales process.


Before you put your home on the market you will want to gather several documents:

  1. Deed. It is important to have your deed.  If you do not, go to the county clerk where the home is located and request a certified copy.  The deed is your proof that you are the owner of the home.
  2. Owners Title Insurance Policy. This document would have been given to you when you purchased the home. Not everyone buys title insurance. If you used a mortgage to purchase the home then there is a strong possibility you purchased the title insurance and should have the policy with your original closing documents. If you do not it is ok.
  3. If over the time you have lived in the home applied for permits to do work on the home, visit your town building department, or if your town has an online system, check to see if there are any open permits or anything that is needed by the building department.  This information will be uncovered when the buyer does their title search.  Better to get ahead of any issues you may have.
  4. If you have a mortgage or home equity loan, get the payoffs.  You are doing this because you want to have an idea of what you will net from the sale of the home.
  5. If you have any judgments, get payoffs. If you paid off judgments, make sure they reflect as paid in full at the local county clerks office.  You want to make sure there are not liens on your property.  If there are you will need payoffs.  If these liens are not yours you may need an attorney to get them removed.
  6. Receipts for work done. When you it comes time to put your home on the market you will need to fill out a Property Condition Report. It is essentially a series of questions designed to give the buyer all information you know about the home. These questions are to be answered honestly.  Honestly in some cases may mean you don’t know and it is ok to respond to certain questions that way.  When you are ready to put your home on the market you will want to boast about what is the best features. This may include work you had done. These receipts will act as supporting evidence for what you are telling the buyers.

When Home is ready to be put on the market:

  1. Property condition disclosure. This is a disclosure completed by the owner of the home. Many states prohibit a real estate professional from completing the form. It is a series of questions about the home and the condition it is in.  It is to be filled out with the best of your recollection. No need to hire a professional to do work.  You are letting the buyers know before negotiating the issues if any with your home, ie outlets that don’t work, boiler that is broken.  It is intended to level the playing field when negotiating the price.

Once in contract

  1. Title report. Some states the buyer is responsible for the title report and in others the seller is responsible. If you are in a state where you need to provide a title report, search for a local title company. They will normally hold the down payment by the buyer when the contract is signed. They will produce a report that addresses many things, including, the chain of ownership, the amounts of mortgage and liens that are on the property and that need to be paid off at closing, the meets and bounds of the property, and many more things.
  2. State specific disclosures. When selling with or without a realtor will dictate if any additional forms are needed by your state. Some states require fair housing disclosures to be made as well as documents relating to hazardous material, septic, and many other things. The title company you are using can provide these documents to you.