7 Steps to a Smooth Closing

Closing on your home is the last obstacle, which can seem tedious after a long process of negotiations and home loan approvals. You’re very close to walking through the doors of your new home, so it’s worth it to be patient just a little longer. Here are seven steps to a smooth and stress-free closing. You’re almost there!

  1. Set a Closing Date: Request that your title company sets a closing date that coincides with your current lease or the sale of your current home. Also keep in consideration when you’ll have the funds available (end of the month, perhaps) and your work schedule. Closings can be worked around any schedule, so you may request an evening or weekend closing.

  1. Have Your Funds Ready. Typically, buyers have to come to closing with some type of money, but you can’t just write out a personal check. Ask the title company what forms of payment they accept. This gives you time to move money around and go to your bank to have a cashier’s check created.

  1. Purchase Title Insurance. Title insurance isn’t to protect you from problems with the title of your mortgage. Instead, it protects the lender if the home had a claim on it or the sellers didn’t own the home. The easiest route is to purchase title insurance from the same company where you purchased the lender’s title policy.

  1. Arrange for Homeowners Insurance. Homeowners insurance is another form of coverage that you need to protect your home and the contents in it. If you already have a homeowners policy, all you have to do is transfer it to your new address. If you rented, you’ll need a new policy. Work with the same company that provides coverage for your car – it’s most convenient and you get added discounts.

  1. Review Your Good Faith Estimate. Closing shouldn’t be a huge surprise. You were provided a Good Faith Estimate that outlines the costs you’re responsible for. However, some prices can increase by as much as 10%! Be prepared for cost increases, and don’t hesitate to ask about them.

  1. Do a Walk-Through of the Home. Right before your closing, do a walk-through of the home. This is your last chance to make sure that repairs were taken care of, sellers left what they promised to and that water/electric is functioning properly.

Take Care of Problems. If you do notice something – the shrubs were removed from the property or the appliances were taken, for instance – you may delay the closing or negotiate a discount. It’s in everyone’s best interest to have the home closed on, so it never hurts to ask.