A seller wrap real estate transaction, also known as a wraparound mortgage or simply a “wrap,” is a type of creative financing arrangement used in real estate transactions. In a seller wrap transaction, the seller acts as the lender, offering financing to the buyer for the purchase of the property. This method is particularly useful when traditional financing options may not be readily available or when the buyer prefers more flexible terms than those offered by banks or mortgage lenders.

Here’s how it typically works:

  1. Agreement: The seller and the buyer agree on the terms of the sale, including the purchase price, interest rate, and repayment schedule.
  2. Real Estate Contract: The buyer signs a real estate contract, which is a legal document outlining the terms of the loan, including the amount borrowed, the interest rate, and the repayment schedule. This document is recorded at closing.
  3. Payments: The buyer makes mortgage payments to the seller, who in turn uses a portion of those payments to continue paying the underlying mortgage on the property. The remaining amount is profit for the seller.
  4. Fulfillment Deed: Once the loan is paid off, the seller signs a warranty fulfilment deed which is recorded at that time and places the “buyer” onto title.

A seller wrap transaction can be beneficial for both parties involved:

  • For the seller: It provides an opportunity to sell the property quickly, potentially at a higher price than if they were to sell it conventionally. It also generates a steady stream of income through the interest payments made by the buyer.
  • For the buyer: It offers an alternative financing option, especially if they have difficulty obtaining a traditional mortgage due to factors like poor credit history or lack of a substantial down payment. It can also allow for more flexible terms and potentially lower closing costs.

However, it’s important for both parties to fully understand the risks and responsibilities involved in a seller wrap transaction. For example:

  • Risk for the seller: The seller remains liable for the underlying mortgage on the property. :  If the buyer defaults on the payments to the seller and the seller can not afford the payments, the seller could face foreclosure from the lender holding the original mortgage.
  • Risk for the buyer: If the seller fails to make payments on the underlying mortgage, the lender could foreclose on the property, leaving the buyer without recourse.

It’s crucial for anyone considering a seller wrap transaction to consult with a real estate attorney or financial advisor to ensure they fully understand the implications and legalities involved.