• So You’ve Sold Your House; Now What? You’ve Still Got Lots To Do! Here’s Your Post-Sale Checklist

    After your home is closed on, and the house has officially sold, you’ve still got plenty to do. Just because the house is sold doesn’t mean you’re all done. In fact, you’ve got even more work to do. Keep copies of all paperwork that was accumulated throughout the sale, because you’ll need them when you file your taxes; in order to file them correctly, the accountant is going to need all documents pertaining to the expenses and the proceeds of the sale of the house. Don’t forget to save it in case you get audited (hopefully you don’t). 958f0839d34a786ec52d85bbeaf5f105

    Another reason to keep documents is that the IRS lets you add the cost of any home improvements you made while you owned the home, meaning you can deduct expenses. But…in order to take advantage of this benefit, you’re going to have to provide receipts for everything you spent. The government isn’t going to take your word for it; you’lil_214x170.988722671_p0gal need receipts showing the date, amount, and company you purchased from. Read: Preparing to Sell Your Property: a Checklist.

    Tax laws are ever-changing. This is yet another reason you need to keep your paperwork. For example, some laws let you exclude a good portion of the profits from the sale of the house from your taxes (if the home was a primary residence, not a secondary home). If you sell your house without purchasing another directly after, you need to keep your money somewhere in a secure place. This usually is a money market mutual fund. 

    Don’t fall into the trap of feeling like you need to run out and buy another home immediately. Sometimes, you should suck it up and rent, if you aren’t able to find anything that you truly love enough to buy. Don’t ever buy something because you don’t want to rent. Better to rent for a few months or a year so that you can buy a house that you really like, rather than regretting the purchase, selling it after a few years, and losing money on it. Also, lots of people don’t realize that you do have 2 years to defer taxes on the profits from the sale of the house. 

    Be sure to decide what realtor you’ll use to buy your next home; just because your realtor did a great job selling your house, doesn’t mean they’re very experienced in helping people buy them. Agents are usually skilled in one area rather than another; they usually aren’t “jacks-of-all-trades.” If you can’t afford to put down the 20% downpayment, keep renting for a little while. You never want to be house-poor. For further reading, see: Home Selling To-Do List, and, 21 Ways to Prepare Your Home For Selling.

    Categories: General

    2 thoughts on “So You’ve Sold Your House; Now What? You’ve Still Got Lots To Do! Here’s Your Post-Sale Checklist

    • Alexis says:

      I really like our realtor who helped us sell our first house. It’s been a few years, but I really like her; can I really not use her to buy a new one?

    • Laura King says:

      Hi Alexis,

      This will be a personal decision. Strongly consider however, that realtors usually specialize more in one area than the other. Look at her track record in terms of buying homes. Review the asking prices and see how much of a deal she got her clients. My main advice would be to check the numbers and see how she’s done over the years in terms of buying.

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