Posts Tagged ‘real estate agent’

Preparing Your Home For Sale, by Inwest Title, a Utah Title Company

Friday, December 28th, 2012

At Inwest Title Services we want to help you in any way we can. In addition to our services we also have relationships with real estate professionals, loan officers and others in the industry that provide us with useful tips that we want to pass on to you. One thing that is really important in the current market is making a home stand out and look its best when trying to sell it. Whether you are a real estate agent or a home owner, there are some tips than can help you sell your home.

Clean It Up: It seems obvious but it is often surprising how many homes are full of clutter, too much furniture or safety hazards that make it not show its best. Having a home that looks spacious will make buyers feel like they will fit and be comfortable. It may be necessary to put some furniture and other items in storage but make it feel roomy by applying the concept of “less is more”.

Make it Smell Good:
Bad smells make a home seem unclean and like it hasn’t been well cared for. A professional carpet cleaning will not only revitalize carpets by removing stains and minimizing the appearance of wear…but it will get rid of odors that have been trapped for years and make the rooms smell fresh. Removing litter boxes, washing pet bedding regularly, taking diapers outside immediately after changing them etc. will make a home smell its best. Air fresheners are not a bad idea either. Make your home one that is remembered because it looked and smelled its best.

Curb Appeal: Clean up the outside, keep landscaping well watered and trimmed, remove trash cans from the curb as soon as they have been picked up, keep debris, toys, etc. cleaned up, especially in front. Let the first impression in a picture or in person be the best possible.

Safety First: Keep driveways, walks and porches cleared of snow and ice in the winter, or overgrown landscaping in the summer. Don’t have potential buyers change their mind because of an injury that could have been prevented. Keep dogs confined during showings, some people are afraid of even the smallest dogs. Make sure that firearms, medications, and anything else that could be hazardous or harmful are properly secured.

Lights on: Turn on every light in the house when a showing is being expected to make it easy to see and make the home look bright and vibrant. Don’t leave your potential buyers fumbling to find a light switch in the dark.

Making your home one of the best on the market will increase the chances of it selling with the timing you need, and for the best price possible.

For this and other information on Utah Title Companies, Utah Title & Escrow, or Title Insurance Quotes locate and contact your nearest Inwest Title office at



No Split Closings on Cash Deals in Utah, by Inwest Title, a Utah Title Company

Thursday, December 20th, 2012

Have you ever been involved in a split purchase transaction where the Buyer and Seller want to close at different title companies in Utah, only to be informed that your cash Buyer has to close with the Seller’s title company?  Is this True? Can they force your Buyer to do this?  Why is this happening?

This issue first arose in 2007 when the Utah Insurance Department issued a bulletin announcing their official position that under the Insurance laws a title company that was only handling the cash side of a purchase was not authorized to conduct an escrow since they would not be issuing a title insurance policy.  For a while after this a few title companies tested the waters claiming the statutory language was ambiguous and elected to close Buyer side cash closings anyway.  Ultimately, these companies were pursued, fined, placed on probation, and ended up losing their battles with the Utah Insurance Department.  Additionally, a few years ago the Division’s position was further strengthened by an amendment to the insurance laws (see 31A-23a-406(1)(c))  that clarified the language stating a title company must issue a policy in order to conduct an escrow.  (There is a minor exception to this rule when a title company is dealing with mobile homes, grazing rights, or water rights.)

Is everyone happy with the result? No, but it is the law and it is unlikely to change.

Potential Solutions for your cash Buyer:

  1. Negotiate in the REPC that the Seller close and purchase title insurance from a title company selected by the Buyer;
  2. Request the Buyer be permitted to do a courtesy signing at the title company of their choice.  (This will mean the Seller’s title company will still prepare all the documents and receive all funds, but the signing can take place elsewhere); or
  3. Close with the Seller’s title company.

For this and other information on Utah Title Companies, Utah Title & Escrow, or Title Insurance Quotes locate and contact your nearest Inwest Title office at


REPC Deadline Reminder System, by Inwest Title, a Utah Title Company

Friday, October 26th, 2012

Do you and your real estate team struggle to stay on top of REPC (Real Estate Purchase Contract) deadlines from transaction to transaction?  If you work with Inwest Title Services on your real estate transaction then you need not fret.  Inwest Title Services provides their clients with timely reminders on all of their important deadlines on the REPC.  The deadline system triggers an email to your inbox when your pending deadlines are near:

*Seller Disclosure, Due Dilligence, Settlement Deadline, as well as Financing and Appraisal Deadlines all arrive 2-4 days before the deadline on the contract.

The system will also notify you of the latest REPC addendum we have received on file.

Let Inwest Title Services put your deadline worries to rest.  Place your next title order with Inwest Title Services.

For this and other information on Utah Title Companies, Utah Title & Escrow, or Title Insurance Quotes locate and contact your nearest Inwest Title office at



Explaining Why Title Insurance is Necessary to your Clients, by Inwest Title, a Utah Title Company

Friday, October 19th, 2012

Other types of insurance coverage focus on possible future events and charge an annual premium, such as flood insurance or hazard insurance. Title insurance protects against loss from hazards and defects already existing in the title and is purchased with a one-time premium.

Insuring a home’s title begins with a search of public land records affecting the property. The title agent or attorney working on behalf of the underwriter examines pertinent documents to determine whether the property is insurable. Those documents include deeds, wills, trusts, outstanding mortgages and judgments, property liens, highway or utility line easements, pending legal actions and notary acknowledgements.

When title problems are disclosed during the search process, they are corrected whenever possible to avoid future claims. According to surveys done by the American Land Title Association (ALTA), title problems consistently arise in one out of three real estate transactions (36%).

Read more


For this and other information on Utah Title Companies, Utah Title & Escrow, or Title Insurance Quotes locate and contact your nearest Inwest Title office at


New Real Estate Investment Advisor Designation available in Utah

Friday, October 12th, 2012

A new Real Estate designation is now available for Real Estate Investment Advisor (REIA). The first designation class date is Monday, October 15, 2012 from 8:00 am- 5:00 pm. It will be located at the Salt Lake Board of Realtors Office, 230 South Town Ridge Parkway Sandy UT. The 8-hour course will include 4 hours CORE and 4 hours Elective credit on Residential Real Estate Investing. The National Association of Real Estate Advisors (NAREIA) is sponsoring the course.

We are pleased to announce that James Seaman, Attorney at Inwest Title will be teaching the portion of the curriculum titled “Legal, Title & Closing Issues”.

Visit or the Salt Lake Board of Realtors for registration and more information.  Inwest Title Services is thrilled to be a part of this new designation course.

For this and other information on Utah Title Companies, Utah Title & Escrow, or Title Insurance Quotes locate and contact your nearest Inwest Title office at


How do you calculate your Seller’s Proceeds at Sale?, by Inwest Title a Utah Title Company

Friday, July 30th, 2010

As a Real Estate Agent, it’s important to have a system or a worksheet that you use to calculate your Seller’s proceeds or to predict the Seller’s Net Fees when taking a listing or evaluating a buyer’s offer.  In essence, the Seller’s proceeds make all the difference in whether the transaction is realistic.  The Net Fee Sheet or Seller’s Proceeds calculation will take into account the sales price, agent commissions, 1st mortgage and 2nd mortgage payoffs, property taxes, Homeowner’s Title Policy, escrow closing fees, Home Owner’s Association payoff, and any other fees necessary for the Seller to pay in order to sell the home. A basic Net Fee Sheet calculation done correctly at the time of the listing presentation with a prospective seller can save time and money of the Real Estate Agent.  The calculation can be compared to the Seller’s bottomline to evaluate the likelihood of breaking even and what seller proceeds will be over and above.  For example:

Property Sale Price :  $200,000

Agent Commission 6%:  $12,000

1st Mortgage Payoff:  $168,000

2nd Mortgage Payoff:  0

Prorated Property Taxes:  $456.15

Homeowner’s Policy:   $1315

Escrow/Closing Fees: $215

Reconveyance Fees: $85


Seller Proceeds = $17,928.85

As shown above, $17,928.85 is the amount that the Seller will receive at the end of the transaction after all fees, commissions and payoffs are handled. A simple way to calculate your Seller Net Fees and determine your Seller’s Proceeds is to use the Seller Net Sheet Calculator (the image above is a screen shot of our calculator for the above example) on It’s simple and easy to input the necessary variables and get your answer for your Seller.  Try it today!

Real Estate Purchase Contract Deadlines – Don’t Get Caught Missing One, by Inwest Title a Utah Title Company

Wednesday, July 21st, 2010

It’s that dreadful feeling, the one that leaves a pit in your stomach. You forgot an appointment with your doctor, you missed a meeting with your kid’s teacher, or you forgot a friend’s birthday. Now you are berating yourself because you forgot to put it in your calendar in the first place. That’s an easy mistake to make with our hectic schedules.

Now double that terrible feeling when you realize you missed your client’s deadline in their real estate purchase contract. Hundreds of thousands of dollars together with the trust they placed with you is now on the line.

Even the best real estate agents will tell you that one time or another they forgot a deadline. Usually all ends well for the parties involved, but there are those horror stories where real estate agents and their brokers are sued, earnest money was not released appropriately, etc; all because a deadline was avoidably missed.

Do you put your dates in your Outlook calendar; or enter them into your Blackberry or iPhone; or do you write them down on your desk calendar; or do you record them the old-fashioned way, in your brain’s memory bank?

No matter your method and how flawless it is, if the date was never entered into one of these sources, you won’t have the necessary reminder.

A great way around this problem and a terrific safety net for you and your clients is to use our REPC deadline reminder feature. When you send your REPC to your favorite escrow officer at Inwest Title Services, they will enter the deadline dates into our system.

Two days prior to each deadline, you will receive an email from us. If a loan officer is involved, they also will receive an email. If your REPC dates change some time throughout the transaction, just send them to your escrow officer and we’ll update our system.

Now, isn’t that peace of mind?!

Only Real Estate Agents should be Processing/Negotiating Short Sales in Utah!, by Inwest Title a Utah Title Company

Friday, June 25th, 2010

The Utah Insurance Department (UID) has confirmed that it considers an Escrow Officer that processes or negotiates any short sale transaction(s) in violation of the insurance laws and are putting their license in jeopardy.   The UID issued a June 21, 2010 Bulletin 2010-5 to put all Title Agencies and Insurers on notice of this fact.

The UID’s bulletin goes hand in hand with the Utah  Division of Real Estate’s (DRE) position that the negotiation of a short sale falls under the province of a licensed real estate agent, and that all others (except attorneys) conducting such negotiations are in violation of Utah law by acting as unlicensed real estate agents. The DRE has commented on this issue several times in their quarterly newsletters.

The UID Bulletin cautions any dual licensed individuals (those holding title, real estate, and/or law licenses) that there are clear boundaries on when a licensee can negotiate a short sale while also handling the title work.

We agree with both the UID and URE’s positions since real estate agents are professional sales advocates who are in the best position to negotiate the terms of a short sale transaction.

Are You Ordering a Preliminary Title Report when you should?, by Inwest Title a Utah Title Company

Friday, June 18th, 2010

Did you order your title report (PR) in a timely fashion?

Too many times we see listing agents who forget, or don’t think it is necessary, to order a title report prior to or at the time they take a listing. That could be a disaster. Yes, in most cases the title report will show exactly what you, as the listing agent, expect to see and will concur with what your sellers have told you. However, there are too many times when a title report has revealed a significant problem that will seriously impact the sale of what you thought was a great listing.

Take for example, the couple whose kids accidentally lit fire to a national forest while playing with fireworks. The couple was sued by the United States for the firefighting expenses and ultimately had a $300,000 judgment entered against them which became a lien against their home. They either didn’t know or didn’t disclose that to their listing agent who thought she had a great listing. The lien, together with the underlying mortgage debt, was far greater than the house was worth. The federal government won’t budge on what they are owed, so the couple was forced to withdraw their home from the market.

Ask yourself what you would have done if you had spent weeks marketing the house, had several showings, and finally negotiated a contract, only to find out the house for all intents and purposes couldn’t be sold? Now suppose the buyer’s agent is not too happy. After all they brought a “ready, willing, and able” buyer and are suing you for the commission. This would be an unfortunate situation and one that could have been avoided had you asked your friendly local title company to pull a title report (PR) at the time you listed the home.

Ok, so that may be a rare situation. What about the woman who has had you list her home? She originally bought it with her ex-husband, but years ago they divorced. She refinanced the house and paid him “his share.” Unfortunately, the deed recorded at the time of the refinancing wasn’t prepared correctly and the current title search shows the ex-husband is still owed 50% of the equity according to the divorce decree.

This could be a pretty messy situation if the ex-spouses aren’t getting along, since the only way to insure the property now is to have a properly-recorded deed which will require the ex-husband to cooperate with the woman who owns the home. What if you didn’t pull a title report at the time you listed the home, but had waited until the house was under contract and the buyers were in their due diligence phase? Everyone is expecting to close in two weeks and your seller is trying to track down her ex-husband.

Ok, that maybe doesn’t happen very often either, but one thing that happens often is your seller not being truthful about what is owed on the property. A title report will show the liens recorded against the property. Having that knowledge can keep you from listing what is really a short-sale candidate when you think you have a dream listing.

Knowledge is golden. Don’t get caught without the facts when you list that next home. Call us today or order your title report from our website at your convenience. It could save you and your sellers a lot of grief.