The day you close on your new home is a big day!  We celebrate birthdays, weddings, graduations – closings should be celebrated too! But it can also be a little mysterious – everyone talks about it, but what happens at closing and what do you need?

You will usually get to pick the time and location of your closing when you are the buyer, but you may need to coordinate with the seller. When you go to your closing, plan on at least one hour- there are times it may go longer but the typical closing lasts about an hour.  I usually suggest to my buyers to avoid closing on the last day of the month and the last Friday of the month – those days can get a little crazy as so many want to close at the end of the month.  For better customer service, you may want to choose another day if possible.  

When you go to your closing, there may be a room full of people or there may be very few- when we had so many foreclosures, there was rarely anyone there for the sellers side as the property was bank owned. Now it's very common for the buyer, seller and both realtors, plus a closer for both parties to be in the closing. Frequently your loan officer will also be there – it becomes a big party!!  There are times a seller may pre-sign depending on what they are doing and then they won't be at the closing. When the buyer and seller are both there, it's a great time to ask questions about the house, yard, neighborhood.

Make sure you have a valid photo id – either your driver's license or a passport. If there are any conditions on your loan that you may need to provide, make sure you bring those items – your loan officer will let you know if you need anything.  It may be a gift check or maybe a statement showing a payoff on a credit card, etc. You will need to bring the funds needed for closing. Typically that needs to be in the form of a cashier's check made out to the title company or a wire. Check with your title company to verify how you need to provide the funds – each title company is slightly different.

You will sign several forms – some of them are very similar but may have different wording. You will sign the note and mortgage, the closing disclosure and many other mortgage documents. The title company will also have some of their own documents that you need to sign.  The closer will go over each document but if you like to read everything before you sign, you may want to ask to get the forms ahead of time.  

Once you have signed everything, the closer will go make copies and cut checks – sometimes it takes as long to make copies as it does for you to sign everything!!  Usually while the closer is gone, you will get the keys to the house and have time to talk to the seller or their agent. This is a great time to ask questions and to get any information such as a garage key code, etc.

Once the closer is back, you will get your copies and you will be a new homeowner!  You can celebrate owning a new home – while you get to move in!!!  The fun begins as you move into the new home and begin to unpack!

Leslie Vanderwerf,  NMLS ID#335509, American Mortgage & Equity Consultants, Inc, An Equal Housing Lender, NMLS#150953 - Email - Website

About Leslie Vanderwerf

Currently a Branch Manager for American Mortgage and Equity Consultants, Inc., it's hard to believe I have been in the mortgage business for more than 25 years and have worked with Sharlene since 2000! I love sharing mortgage insights here each week and helping people finance their homes. Listening helps me find the right program for you!

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