As the summer heats up, so does the real estate market in cold weather states like Illinois. According to CNBC, home sales are on the rise again recently, and there isn’t enough existing housing to meet the market demand. Although it is a seller’s market, listing a home still comes with its fair share of uncertainty. Taking the steps necessary to ensure a smooth process is often easier said than done. What is there to know about selling a home?

Real estate law is complex because it involves two parties agreeing on a contract worth potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars. Not only do a buyer and seller have to agree on the sale, but third parties like a real estate broker and a bank are also involved. A home is likely the single-most valuable asset in any family’s life, so it is right for everyone involved to put their due diligence into the transaction.

Summer is often when our homes look the best, so it makes sense to sell now. However, certain factors in the market can dictate home selling strategies. Likewise, state and local laws will dictate benchmarks in the process of sale. A real estate agent understands the market and home selling strategies, but he or she may have the interests of the sale in mind, but not necessarily the seller.

Instead, a real estate attorney can oversee the transaction on behalf of sellers and act as a neutral third-party who isn’t focused on their commission at the point of sale. Additionally, many real estate agents may use a template when writing a contract, which may not take into account the unique quirks or history of a home. From a legal perspective, what is there to know about selling a home in Illinois?

Certain elements must be included in a contract

From a listing agreement with a real estate agent to a sales agreement with a buyer, it is in the seller’s interest to ensure that particular language is written into contracts. From a layman’s perspective, the language might seem okay, but only a trained legal eye can point out any missing or unclear elements that could cause issues for sellers in the future.

Some disclosures are required

Sellers must put in writing any known defects on a property like a crack in a wall. If a defect is not disclosed, a buyer could come back after the seller with costly demands. The disclosure must also include how the defect will affect the value and safety of the home.

When it comes to selling a home, what isn’t known can hurt. That is why it is important to have everything in writing so the transaction is transparent for the seller.