Buying a home can be much like your favorite baseball team’s pitching rotation. You may have done everything right during the first eight innings, setting yourself up to win the game, but then you bring in the closer. No matter how well your team has done so far, a last moment blunder can still derail the entire process.
You’ve done great so far in selecting a home and applying for a mortgage. Don’t let the house get away from you now. Here are some easy ways to go about ensuring that when your closing date arrives, you’ll definitely be receiving the keys to the home you love.
Take Care of The Title as Soon as Possible
When you work with a lender, they’ve agreed to help finance exactly what the previous owners claimed to sell you. This can become a problem if the sellers weren’t entirely accurate in their depiction of the property. Consider, for example, that the seller hasn’t actually been paying property taxes on the home for the last few years, and there’s a lien on the property. If the title office fails to catch this, your lender will delay closing.
The best way to avoid such issues is to get a pre-closing disclosure from the title company and then review all the details thoroughly. If you do this sooner rather than later, you can make sure to get the problem fixed, hopefully before your proposed closing date.
Don’t Make Any Big Financial Moves
You should avoid all major financial moves—whether it’s buying an automobile or opening a new line of credit—before you’ve closed on the home. Anything that alters your credit will cause problems for your proposed mortgage. Again, your lender is financing the home based on your situation at the time of closing, not at the time of application. If your credit is lower than what it was when you applied, then you’ll have added a huge speed bump in the process.
Some think that they can circumvent the problem by paying for something such as a vehicle with cash, rather than financing it. This can also impact your closing, as that drain in savings will dramatically alter your listed cash reserves.
If you need a new appliance or furniture for your new home, wait until after the deed is done before you leap.
Make Sure Documents Are Prepared / Correct
The burden of making sure that all of the necessary documents are collected for closing falls on the lender. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t check in. No harm comes from making sure all your ducks are in a row. Make sure that you get pre-approved by a qualified, knowledgeable lender and you don’t have to worry as much about this.
Checking in with your lender is even more important when it comes to making sure that all of your paperwork is correct, particularly on your Loan Estimate and Closing Disclosure documents. It’s understandable that you may not understand everything featured in such documents, so be sure to reach out to your lender for any clarifications.
You should be able to catch one bit of incorrect information, however, and you should absolutely get it fixed: Misspellings. If “Adam Stevens” is listed on a potential mortgage instead of “Adam Stephens,” this will certainly create a delay while the paperwork is amended.
Take The Day Off
We’re not just saying this to get you out of the office (although the natural nervousness of closing on such a major purchase may justify a bit of relaxation).
Ideally, the closing process can take as little as 30 minutes. At other times, especially toward the end of the month, closing can take much longer. You should never count on being able to complete the process during your lunchbreak. You’ll have enough on your mind come closing day; don’t feel bad about taking a personal day.
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