How to Prepare for a Closing

The search is over. You’ve found the house of your dreams. You’ve negotiated the price. The house has been through inspection. You’ve even hired the movers. Now it’s time for the closing, the aptly named process in which ownership of a home is legally transferred from the seller to the buyer. As the final step ...

The search is over. You’ve found the house of your dreams. You’ve negotiated the price. The house has been through inspection. You’ve even hired the movers. Now it’s time for the closing, the aptly named process in which ownership of a home is legally transferred from the seller to the buyer.

As the final step in your home-buying process, you want everything to go smoothly and quickly. But since most people only go through closings a few times in their lives, buyers are often unsure of what to expect and how to prepare properly. Taking a few minutes to properly prepare for your closing can save you time on your closing day and prevent issues that could delay or halt the closing process.

The People

The only people required to attend the closing are the buyers (including all co-borrowers and co-signers), the sellers (or sellers representatives with Power of Attorney), and the closing agent. In Illinois, buyers and sellers attend the same closing. In other states, the closings are held separately. It is customary, but not required, for both buyer and seller to hire their own real estate attorneys to oversee the contract period and closing. Additionally, real estate agents and/or lenders can attend as well.

As you go through the process, continue to check in with all the people involved with your closing to confirm that they have everything they need for the closing to go smoothly. Be sure to check in one last time a few days before the closing. Confirm the location, time and date of the closing with each person to be sure everyone has the same information.

The Papers

Ask all the people involved to share in advance any paperwork that you will be required to sign or review at the closing. If you review in advance, you can take your time to carefully check every document, have any questions addressed and have any errors corrected.

The Walk Through

Do a final walk-through of the home prior to the closing. Typically this takes place the day of the closing. Try to resolve any issues PRIOR to the closing to avoid feeling pressured to pay more than necessary to resolve an issue.

The Prep List

Bring these items to your closing:

  • Cashier’s check for the amount listed in the closing documents. If the amount is over $50,000, the amount must be wire transferred prior to the closing.
  • Checkbook to cover any additional costs.
  • Driver’s licenses for both/all borrowers/co-borrowers/co-signers.
  • Proof of insurance with effective date of the closing date.

Wrap Up

Now that you’ve taken the time to prepare, your closing should go smoothly. Do you have more questions about closings? Are you at the start of your home buying process instead of the end? Contact us today. We’d love to help.

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