Whether a cash purchase is right for your situation or not, is it even possible to sell your house for cash? What does it even mean to sell your house for cash?
Yes, you can sell your house for cash so to speak. Actually, what happens is that you will be given a check from the title company or attorney at the time of closing and not actual cash. The expression “sell your house for cash” just means that the contract will NOT be contingent on financing.
The buyer will not have to get a loan (mortgage) from a bank to purchase your house. The buyer can still opt to get a loan and fund the purchase or pay cash, but they have to close on the date set by the contract. The transaction cannot be delayed or they cannot use the excuse that they don’t have funding on the closing date since the transaction is not contingent on financing.
This is completely different from a normal real estate purchase where the buyer gets a loan (mortgage) in order to be able to purchase the house AND the sale is contingent on that happening. When a loan is involved the closing date is set by the loan process timeframe which can be 30-60 days depending on the type of loan. If the contract is to close in 7 days, it is impossible to get a traditional loan in place in time.
Why you should sell your house for cash
Why sell a house for cash or cash only? There can be several reasons why someone might have to try to sell their home this way versus using a traditional buyer that has to obtain a loan for the purchase. The main ones are usually:
- Issues with the house
- If you have a short timeframe in which you need to close
- Maybe you are in a short sale situation
- Maybe there are title issues
- Increases your odds of actually closing the sale
- Don’t want a bunch of strangers going through your home
- You have a difficult tenant situation
- Out-of-town owner
- Need to sell your house fast
Issues with the house can motivate a seller to find a cash buyer
As houses age, maintenance and other issues can come up. Maybe the roof needs to be replaced or maybe the foundation is cracked or maybe the inside of the house looks like a time capsule from 40 years ago.
If upkeep on the house has been put off for many years, it might take thousands of dollars to bring it up to current market conditions. And this can be money you just don’t have. Not to mention is can take months to rehab your house to repair everything.
Some big-ticket items that make selling to a cash buyer can be a must:
- Well or septic that don’t pass today’s regulations
- Foundation cracks or settling
- Water damage in the main house from a bad roof or in the basement from foundation issues
- Sheds or other buildings that are in disrepair or encroaching on property lines
- Fire damaged rooms
- Mold infestation
- Drug manufacturing remnants
- Hazardous building materials that were used in the past – asbestos, lead, etc…
If you have a short timeframe in which you need to close
If your timeframe to sell your house is less than a couple months, you will need to find a cash buyer. Today it can take at least 45 to 60 days for a buyer to get a loan to purchase your house.
Maybe you have a job transfer, you are heading into foreclosure or bankruptcy, maybe your house sale fell through and now you have another home purchase in jeopardy. The reasons are many but the situations call for a quick house sale and closing.
Cash buyers can close in just a few days or weeks in most cases. The main issue is how fast the title company or attorney’s office can get all the title work ready, not how long it takes to get the funds ready.
Maybe you are in a short sale situation
If you are in a “short sale” situation because you owe more than the house is worth, you will need to find a cash buyer that has patience. The timing of a closing can be the tricky part, so it is really hard to time out the acceptance of a loan with the closing of the property. Short sales can take several weeks to even months to negotiate with the banks. This uncertainty makes it very difficult to use a buyer that needs to get a loan.
Cash buyers can be very flexible and will not have the time restraints that a person trying to time out getting a loan would have which just makes the whole transaction work smoother.
Maybe there are title issues
Title issues can complicate the timing of a closing. Normally if someone is getting a bank loan to purchase your house the loan is only good for a specific period of time. If that time period expires the borrower is force to update information or just start over on the loan process.
Title issues can be caused by death of owners, owners that are out of the country or local area, minors on the title, trusts with multiple members, broken change of title, there are many reasons why title work completion can be delayed even in today’s computer information driven world.
Increases your odds of actually closing the sale
Mortgage loans can be a little unpredictable. While you may find a purchaser that has their act together and a lender that knows exactly what they are doing, loan issues come up all the time. House transactions fall through for a variety of last minute changes or requirements from lenders or borrower circumstances.
With cash buyers you never need to worry about loan issues preventing a closing. You do need to make sure you have proof of funds from a cash buyer before you ever sign a sales contract.
Don’t want a bunch of strangers going through your home
If you are the type of person that doesn’t want a parade of strangers going through you home at all hours of the day and night, a cash sale might fit your needs. With a cash buyer, you will just have a few people coming through your house. They usually will have a contractor or maybe one inspector needing to look at your house.
With a traditional buyer you can have many, many people walking through your house even after you have a contract. There will be several different buyer inspections, appraisal people, and city inspection people all setting appointments and needing access to your house.
You have a tenant situation in an investment property
Rental properties have their own set of issues when it comes to selling. Sometimes tenants might not be happy with your plans and cooperation might not be forth coming. This can cause real issues with the traditional loan buyer’s process.
Cash transaction will severely limit the number of interactions with an occupant which can be a solution. And if necessary access to the house doesn’t even have to happen for a cash buyer to close on the house. Just keep in mind, the price will probably be adjusted to reflect the limited access because they will not be able to determine if the systems like heating and cooling, water/sewer lines, and electrical panel are in good working order.
You can sell your house fast for cash
If you are selling to a cash buyer, the sale can go extremely fast sometimes in less than a week. Normally what takes so long is the loan process and getting everything approved for the loan. When you have a cash buyer in place all you need is the title work from the title company which can be completed in days, not weeks or months.
Selling your house “As-Is” for cash
One of the main reasons for selling your house for cash is that you can sell it “as-is”. “As Is” just means that as a seller you are not going to do any fixes or improvements to the property before you sell it. Any repairs will fall on the purchaser of the property.
When you go to sell your property the traditional way, where a buyer uses a loan to fund the transaction, issues can arise because of the rules of the lender or the loan criteria.
The criteria that a loan has can be dictated by a few different things. If the loan is a going to eventually end up being sold to a big national company or wall street, the loan will have very specific criteria that the lender has to follow to see if the house qualifies for that type of loan. If the buyer is using a local lender they might only be excepting loans on certain types of properties. They are regulated by the government agencies and their bank board members, so if they have too many properties of a specific type in their portfolio they may not be able to do another loan for the purchase of your home.
A cash sale of your house means that there will be no issues with different rules and regulations. The buyer is paying cash and is happily purchasing it as is.
A word about companies that buy houses in any condition
So far, we have been talking about selling your house for cash to a person, but companies also purchase houses for cash. You might have seen a billboard, bandit sign, online ads, or received a letter or postcard from such a company. Companies like FasterHouse, that purchase houses “as-is” for cash make strong purchasers, if you are wanting to sell for cash with very little hassles. We have been in business since 2002 with a A+ rating from the BBB. Plus, we have a 4.8 star rating out of 5 stars from Google.
Just do some research first whether you are selling to an individual or a company to check out their reputations, how long they have been in business, see if they are a member of the Better Business Bureau (BBB.org), ask for their “proof of funds” letter or bank statement showing that they have the means to complete the transaction.
What are the advantages of selling your house for cash?
There are many advantages and benefits of selling your house for cash:
- You can sell your house fast with a cash buyer. No need for loan approvals which can take up to 60 days.
- You can close on your schedule whether it is 7 days from now or 3 months from now. The closing date can be selected by you, the seller, and not dictated by a bank.
- Minimize the number of people going through your residence to keep your privacy.
- You can sell your home “as-is” in any condition. No need to make any improvements or repairs.
- It can be a hassle-free transaction since cash buyers don’t require any inspections or appraisals and if you sell to a company they normally have a staff that handles all the details of the closing from start to finish.
- If you own a rental that you are trying to sell, having a cash buyer is one of the easiest ways to sell the property to move on with your life even if you have a noncooperative tenant.
- Makes a house with title issues less stressful because you have the time to get the issues resolved.
- No worries about a closing not happening at the last minute because of funding.
- If you are not local or available, it can make the process so much easier since you will not have to schedule times to be at the house for inspections and appraisals. Plus, you will not have to clean up the house or make improvements.
How do you sell your house for cash? What is the process?
Overall the process is similar to any house selling transaction only much easier. Here are the how to steps for selling your house for cash.
Step 1 – Find a buyer – either list your house with a real estate agent, call a cash buyer like FasterHouse, advertise your house yourself in the local paper or using online classified sites. Or you can also add your property to sites like Zillow.com, FSBO.com, ForSaleByOwner.com, etc…
Step 2 – Before signing a contract with the cash buyer you will want to see “proof of funds” letter or a bank statement showing that they have the cash to purchase your property.
Step 3 – Write up a contract on the property without a “finance clause” or it might be stated “not contingent on financing”. You will also want to state that the house is being sold “As-Is”. If you are using a real estate agent they will be using a “special sales contract” or modifying a normal contract in the “not contingent on financing” section.
Step 4 – Schedule a closing at a title company or attorney’s office depending on your state. They will then do the title searches and prepare all the paperwork
Step 5 – Stay in touch with your buyer directly or with the real estate agent if one is involved.
Step 6– Go to closing on the date you selected and collect your check after signing all the documents.
The title company does all the heavy lifting on preparing all the necessary paperwork and recording the documents.
You might be asking how to find someone to sell your house for cash that is near you.
How to find a cash buyer near me? The proactive way is to look up online for companies that advertise “we buy houses” or “sell your house for cash” and add the city name in which your property is located. For example, “sell your house for cash in st louis” or “we buy houses st louis”. FasterHouse is a go to real estate investor company that will purchase your house for cash if you are in the St Louis metro area.
You can also find them in the Yellow Pages under the “real estate” category. You are not looking for a real estate agent but rather a company or person that buys real estate instead of just listing your house.
Sell your house fast for cash reviews
Checking out reviews and testimonials for a person or company that buy houses for cash can be a great way of seeing if they do what they claim that can do. Google their name, check review sites like Google and Better Business Bureau to see if they have multiple reviews and how many stars. Look for companies that have 4 to 5-star reviews on a consistent basics. Listen to video testimonials or read the testimonials on their websites. You should be able to get a good feel for how a company does business.
The reviews and testimonials plus the combination of a long history in the business of buying houses should be a great indicator of how reputable the company is in keeping their promises and following through to the end.
Sell your house for cash scams
Are there people and companies out there that don’t follow through on their promises and claims – YES! Like any business, there are going to be the bad eggs that promise the world and deliver nothing but headaches.
So how can you spot someone that might not be what they claim?
- Ask for “proof of funds” before you sign anything
- Ask how long they have been in business and verify it with the state – https://www.sos.mo.gov/ Look up their name or company name to see if they are in “good standing”
- See if they have testimonials on a website. These days legitimate people will have a website.
- Make sure they are local. There are many nation-wide companies that market to people but they are not local. They find some local person to represent them, but with something as large as a home, you want a local expert, not a fly by night operation.
- See if they have a business license in the township they are based in.
- Ask who are the support staff you will be working with.
- Find out the title company they use and call them to get their impression of the person / company.
Selling a house for cash was around 36% of the market in 2017, according to CoreLogic. If you are in need of a quick house sale or your house is in a condition which would make it hard to compete on the retail market, selling your house for cash in an “as-is” state would be a viable option. This option usually comes with an adjustment to the price because the person / company that purchases the property will have to do repairs and updates.
If you are in a situation where you have time, your house is market ready, and you are comfortable with people coming through your house whenever the real estate agent calls then you should go the traditional route and you might net more money.
Cash buyers can really save you many headaches, months of your time, and make selling your house a hands-off, stress-free experience in which you quickly receive your cash, remove the unwanted burden so you can move on with your life.
Contact FasterHouse today to see how we can help you today (314) 926-0660