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Essential Paperwork for Selling Your Texas Home by Owner

A real estate transaction is a complex and time-consuming process. Across the state of Texas, the median number of days that houses are spending on the market is 55. That means you could be waiting for several months before you find a buyer and close on the deal. Using a real estate agent can sometimes further complicate the process while also cutting into your profits.

Fortunately, you do not have to rely on real estate agents when selling your home. You can sell your house without a realtor if you feel comfortable navigating the complex process on your own. 

What Does “For Sale by Owner” Mean?

The concept of “for sale by owner” can both expedite the process of selling your home and help you keep more of the profits. Rather than relying on a real estate agent to look for buyers, schedule viewings, and do all the logistical work required, you handle those tasks yourself. It takes a lot more work to go through the home-selling process on your own, but the rewards can be worth the effort.

for sale by owner sign with a couple

Necessary For-Sale-by-Owner Paperwork in Texas

There is a ton of paperwork involved in for-sale-by-owner transactions. Selling your home the traditional way might mean the agent handles many of these documents. Let’s dive into some of the FSBO paperwork that will be necessary when legally selling a house without an agent’s help.

Basic Paperwork

The first category covers some of the basics needed to complete the sale. Selling a house will not be possible without these forms and contracts, and since you are selling the house yourself, you are responsible for providing them. 

Two Forms of ID

Official documentation of your identity is part of most legal processes, and a home sale is no exception. FSBO sellers must provide two forms of identification, which could include a valid passport, a driver’s license ID, or another form of state-issued identification. 

Purchase Agreement and Addendums

When you bought the home you are planning to sell, you and the seller signed a purchase agreement. You must be able to find and provide the original sales contract. Your FSBO documents should also include any addendums made to the agreement after the initial home sale. 

Signed Deed

A property deed is a document that identifies you as the owner of the property. Without this deed, the title company cannot transfer ownership of the house to the buyer. If you do not have the deed, you can obtain it from the county recorder’s office or the register of deeds office, depending on which branch is available in your local municipality. This deed will be signed over to the buyer on the closing date.

Affidavit of Title

The affidavit of title is a little different from the title deed. This affidavit signals that you are the owner of the deed and that there are no lienholders on the deed. Additionally, it is a legal statement that you are not selling the house to someone else at the same time as the indicated buyer. This type of information may not be part of the preliminary title report.

Bill of Sale

The bill of sale is essentially a much larger version of a receipt. It contains information about yourself as the seller as well as the buyer. This bill will also indicate the final purchase price that is agreed upon between yourself and the buyer. 

Closing Statement

This legal document is a summary of all the costs associated with this transaction, including closing costs like the title search and initial property taxes. It also describes who is responsible for paying for which costs. Since you are representing yourself, the closing statement may be prepared by either your escrow agent or someone from the title office. 

State Disclosure Forms

Now that we have covered all the paperwork for selling that represents basic information, it is time to dive into some of the more specific categories. In Texas, other documents will be needed to ensure that the real estate sale is conducted legally within state laws. 

Seller’s Disclosure Notice

A buyer has the right to know what they are paying for. In the seller’s disclosure notice, any significant issues within the home must be laid out. These could be problems with certain appliances or general system issues such as plumbing or electrical. Without seller disclosure forms, the FSBO sale cannot go through in Texas. 

sign here form

Flood Zone Statement

Some homes may be located in known flood zones where the water table is close to ground level. Typically, your buyer’s mortgage lenders need this information to assess the risk of the asset they are funding. When selling a house without a realtor, you will need to obtain this statement yourself.

Lead-Based Paint Disclosure

Any home built before 1978 could have lead-based paint used in its construction. Even if all traces of lead have been removed from the property to your knowledge, you will still be required to provide a lead-based paint disclosure for the future buyer if your home is an older construction. 

Additional Possible Paperwork

All the FSBO paperwork covered so far is required for home sellers who are not using the assistance of a real estate professional. However, there are still additional documents and forms that may be necessary depending on the circumstances of the property and the requests of the buyer’s agent. 

HOA Forms and Guidelines

If your property has any homeowners association agreements in place, then this information will be needed for the buyer. You must share all of the necessary codes, regulations, fees, and approval processes to inform the potential buyer about the HOA you are a part of before the home sale is completed. 

Home Warranty

If you have paid for a home warranty, you will need to provide this information to the buyer as well. The services offered in the warranty contract will roll over from you, the previous owner, to the new owner once the transaction is complete. 

Loan Information

You most likely took out a loan to purchase this home. If that is the case, you will need loan documents or a mortgage statement that either shows you paid off the mortgage or how much you owed at the end and any payoff fees that occurred. The buyer might also need property tax records to understand how much they will be paying each year on their property tax bills.

man signing papers

Wills, Trusts, and Power of Attorney Documents

In some cases, the home you are selling may have been inherited from a family member or another party because of estate documents. If that is true, you will need to have those documents on hand to help prove your ownership of the property. Wills, trusts, and power of attorney documents are all needed to complete your sale if they are relevant to how you acquired the home. 

Proof of Repairs

Throughout your homeownership, you may have invested in repair services or home improvement projects. Documentation detailing these repairs, such as receipts from contractors, will help determine the value of the property and provide potential buyers with information about who to contact if there are issues with these repairs in the future. 

Property Surveys and Inspections

A property survey details the exact dimensions and property lines of the land where the home is located. This information will help the buyer know where the property ends on all sides. A home inspection report is also a common aspect of a real estate transaction. Most buyers will pay for an inspection to ensure there are no undisclosed issues with the property.

Why You Should Sell Without a Real Estate Agent

There are certainly some risks associated with selling a house without a realtor. If you do anything incorrectly, you may end up violating some state laws and needing the services of a real estate attorney.

However, there are plenty of other benefits. You can complete the transaction much sooner since you are in charge of all the paperwork and can do things on your own time. Additionally, the lack of additional real estate agent fees will reduce the cost of the owner closing paperwork since there is no seller’s agent.

Another common reason for selling without an agent is when you are seeking cash home buyers in Texas, like A-List Properties. We can complete transactions very quickly if you have a deadline to meet or just want the property off your hands as quickly as possible. 

Sell My House Fast Texas | We Buy Houses Texas

Zach Shelley

Zach Shelley is a seasoned real estate investor with a diverse network spanning across the nation. As the founder of his own real estate venture, Zach is committed to offering innovative solutions to homeowners facing various real estate challenges.. Through his dedication and strategic approach, Zach continues to make a significant impact in the real estate industry, providing homeowners with alternative pathways to navigate their property transactions.

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