Blog :: 03-2011

10 Pieces of Paper You Must Round Up to Buy (or Sell) a Home

By: Tara-Nicholle Nelson

 Home buyers and -sellers alike often bristle with anticipatory irritation at the mere thought of all the paperwork they expect they'll have to come up with to do their transaction, above and beyond the basic loan application, contract, disclosures and closing docs. And these worries start way in advance; it's as though, before they even start visiting open houses, buyers begin to visualize - and dread - spending hours upon hours in the dank catacombs of the Vatican (à la Da Vinci Code) combing through ancient files, seeking some rare and precious artifact documenting their childhood dental history or genealogy.   In some respects, this vision of the experience of obtaining a home loan might not be far off - there are oodles of hoops through which to jump and, occasionally, the loan underwriter requests something sort of bizarre. But more commonly, there's a pretty finite universe of documents you'll really need to scrounge up to get your home bought - or sold. Here they are:

  1. ID (e.g., driver's license, state-issued ID, passport).  Who must produce it?  Buyers and sellers.  Why?  Uh, hello!?!  Lender wants to know that you are who you say you are, buyers, and the title insurance company wants to make sure, sellers, that you actually have the right to sell the home.  Funny enough, this commonly goes unrequested until you get to the closing table, when the notary requests to see it before signing, but some mortgage brokers and even some real estate brokers and agents may ask to see it earlier on.
  2. Paycheck Stubs.  Who must produce it?  Any buyer financing their purchase with a mortgage.  Sellers, usually only in the case of a short sale.  Why? Buyers' purchase price ranges are determined, in part, by their income. And short sellers have to prove an economic hardship.
  3. Two months' bank account statements. Who must produce it?  Buyers getting financing; sellers selling short. Why? Buyers' lenders now require proof of regular income and proof that the down payment money is your own.  Short sellers?  It's all about the hardship.
  4. Two years' W-2 forms or tax returns. Who must produce it?  Mortgage-seeking buyers and short selling sellers. Why? Banks want to see a stable, long-term income. They also limit you to claiming as income the amount on which you pay taxes (attn: all business owners!). And in short sales, again, they want documentation of every single facet of your finances.
  5. Updated everything. Who must produce it? Buyer/mortgage applicants. Why? Because things change, and because the time period between the first loan application and closing can be many months - even years! - on today's market. During the time between contract and closing it's not at all unusual for underwriters to demand buyers produce updated mortgage statements, checks stubs, and such - and its quite common for them to call your office the day before closing to request a last minute verification of employment!
  6. Quitclaim deed. Who must produce it?  Married buyers purchasing homes they plan to own as separate property.  Married sellers selling homes that they own separately, or joint owners selling their interests separately.  Why? With the Quitclaim Deed, the other spouse or owner signs any and all interests they even might have had in the property over the the selling owner, making it possible for the title insurer to guarantee clear, undisputed title is being transferred in the sale.
  7. Divorce decree.  Who must produce it? Buyers and sellers who need to document their solo status or the property-splitting terms of their divorce. Why? Again, to ensure that the seller has the right to sell.  Recently single buyers might need to prove that they shouldn't be held to account for their ex's separate debts or credit report dings.
  8. Gift letters.  Who must produce it? Buyers using gift money toward their down payment.  Why? The bank wants to be sure the gift came from a relative, and is their own money to give.  They also want the relative to confirm in writing that it's a gift, not a loan - a loan would need to be factored into your debt load.
  9. Compliance certificates. Who must produce it? Usually sellers, but sometimes buyers, by contract. Why? Some local governments require various condition requirements be met before the property is transferred, like some cities which require a sewer line be video scoped and repaired, cities which require a checklist of items be met before a certificate of occupancy be issued (usually relevant to brand new and really old homes, the latter of which are often subject to lead paint concerns) and energy conservation ordinances which require low-flow toilets and shower heads to be installed. Ask your real estate pro for advice about which, if any, such ordinances apply in your area.
  10. Mortgage statements. Who must produce it?  Any seller with a mortgage. Why? the escrow holder or title company will need to use them to order payoff demands from any mortgage holder who has to get paid before the property's title can be transferred.

By no means is this an exhaustive list. 

Contact us today to understand how to use this list to your advantage and to find out what else is needed for purchasing and selling in the Stowe area.

40 Inches in One Week to Kick Spring Skiing Into Gear

Hi Everyone,

Well the past week has been one that has pushed the snow plow drivers to the brink, giving us 40 inches of new snow in one week.  While many of us are starting to think about Spring and Summer, there's still some good skiing left at Stowe.

The crowds are down and the deals are out, along with the sun and fun of spring skiing.  If you're looking to get a few more turns in this year, Stowe is the place to be.  The soft corn snow along with sunglasses and lighter layers make for memorable final days on the mountain.

Take advantage of the end of the year lift ticket deals being offered by the Mountain:

 St. Patrick's Day

Ski and Ride Stowe on Thursday March 17, 2011  for ONLY $39 to celebrate St. Patrick's Day! Purchase a $39 one-day lift ticket at Stowe Mountain Resort and enjoy the great conditions. Cannot be combined with any other offer or promotion.
Spring Summit Celebration
Enjoy our "Spring Summit Celebration" adult 2-day lift ticket for ONLY $99! The 2-day adult lift ticket special is valid during the following dates: April 2 & 3, 2011 and April 9 & 10, 2011. Cannot be combined with any other offer or promotion.


Good weather also means looking at houses and land is not only warmer, but easier to view.  Leave the snowshoes in the car and take a stroll around the property with just your boots!  Call us today to arrange a showing or to take some final runs of the year with Peggy or McKee.

Join Stowe's Town Pool and stay at one of our exclusives

Today Stowe's Town Pool is offering a great deal, 66% off, on one of our commercial properties, Edson Hill Manor.  Enjoy a weekend at Edson Hill Manor and call us about purchasing details.

Click here for the Town Pool Deal

One of Stowe's most famous and historic inns, Edson Hill Manor, is the quintessential New England Inn.  Located on 38 plus acres of pristine Vermont country side, this Manor has drawn celebrities and has been the back-drop for several movies.  A known destination for weddings, romantic get-a-ways and summer and winter activities Edson Hill Manor is a true Vermont gem.

Edson Hill Manor Features:

  • 9 Rooms with fireplaces and baths located in the main house
  • 4 Carriage houses with 16 rooms with fireplaces and baths
  • 60 Seat full dining room with fireplace
  •  Commercial kitchen
  • 35 Seat separate bar with fireplace and HD TV
  • Central living room with bar
  • Beautiful terraces with handcrafted stone walls
  • Pool & Pond
  • Wedding/Event field
  • Horse stables, includes care and riding equipment
  • Cross country touring center includes x-country ski & trail maintenance equipment
  • Separate caretakers house

Edson Hill Manor capitalizes on Stowe's many tourist seasons.  Like Stowe, Edson Hill Manor started as a winter destination offering miles of maintained cross country trails and sleigh rides.  The Manor comes complete with an established touring center and horse barn.  Both the touring center and barn come fully stocked with all the necessary equipment.

Edson Hill Manor isn't just busy in the winter, drawing visitors year round.  One area the Manor has expanded greatly is hosting an average 30 weddings a year.  The ability to have family and guest stay at the Manor helps to generate such continued business.  The Manor will be sold with all of the necessary wedding equipment, including a tent, tables and chairs with the ability to host up to 250 people.

Contact us today for more information at 802-793-3566 or 802-375-5009.