Checklist for Sellers

If your client is selling a home in Cayuga County, the following items will be required by the attorneys for the purposes of reviewing the title:

1. Abstract of Title;

A. Does your client have an existing Abstract of Title? This is the title history for the property and is crucial to making sure title is marketable. If the client already has an Abstract from when they purchased the home, then they will need to provide that to their Attorney for updating and reviewing.

2. Tax Search & Tax Bills;

A. Does your client pay tax bills directly? Our office usually orders the tax search, but if your client pays the tax bills directly, then find out if they have copies of bills and/or receipts. The taxes are prorated at the time of closing, so these numbers are important. If the taxes have been prepaid, then the Seller will receive credits back at closing.

3. Survey;

A. Does your client have an existing Survey? A Survey shows the picture of the property and is key to knowing whether the property is described correctly in the abstract, whether there are boundary line concerns or whether there are encroachment issues.  If your client already has a survey, then they will need to provide this to the Attorney for updating and reviewing.

4. Discharge Permit

A. Is there is septic system on the property? If so, the Cayuga County Health Department requires a discharge permit be issued whenever there is a transfer of property. So, your client will need to have their septic inspected and pumped for the sale of their property, even if they have passed inspection recently.

5. Water Test Results

A. Is there a well on the property? If so, your client will need to have the well tested and provide the test results prior to closing.

6. Payoff letters

A. Are there any outstanding mortgages or liens on the property? If so, your client will need to provide letters from the lenders showing the amounts of all the outstanding balances;

7. Wills, Death Certificates, and Release of Lien of Estate Tax

A. Is your Seller the representative of an Estate, such as an Executor or Administrator? If so, your client will need to provide an original death certificate for the deceased, if they have it. For the purposes of title, the death certificate will be recorded at closing together with a Release of Lien of Estate Tax.

8. Orders & Judgments of Divorce

A. Are your clients involved in a divorce? If so, be sure to provide a copy of the divorce decree to the Attorneys so that the proceeds of sale are not improperly distributed at the time of the sale.

9. Bankruptcy Approval

A. Is your client involved in a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy? If so, he/she will need to obtain Bankruptcy Court approval to sell their property. This requires a motion to be made by a Bankruptcy Attorney before the Bankruptcy Judgment and usually takes approximately 30-45 days to receive. Be sure to include this approval as a contingency in the contract.

10. Foreclosure Paperwork

A. Is your client in the middle of a foreclosure action? If so, your client will need to make the attorneys aware of the foreclosure so that they can find out the status of the action and if there is a auction pending. Sellers have the right to sell up until the time of the auction, but the attorneys need to make sure they have the correct payoff amounts from the lender, a Stipulation to Discontinue the Action and an Affirmation Cancelling the Notice of Pendency.

11. Oil & Gas Leases

A. Does your client know if there are any existing oil and gas leases on the property? If so, do they have copies of the leases? The attorneys will need to determine if the leases have terminated or been renewed and how this affects the sale.