Closing on a Home? Here’s What to Expect

Congratulations on finding a great home! After weeks or even months spent searching for the right house, you can now look forward to packing and moving. First, though, you will need to complete the closing process. When you are closing on a home, it’s helpful to know what to expect and how to prepare so that the process goes as smoothly as possible.

How Long It Takes

The time between having your offer accepted and getting the keys to your new home could take as little as a week or as long as six weeks. If you are paying cash for your house, the process is much quicker. However, when you are financing the purchase with a mortgage, it can take much longer. In 2019, it took about 50 days on average to close on a house.

You may be excited that you received a loan pre-qualification before your house search began. However, there is a difference between being pre-qualified and pre-approved. When you have been pre-approved, that means that your mortgage lender has already verified certain information and that definitely speeds the process along.

A significant part of the closing steps involve underwriters who will review the appraisal and review and verify your employment, credit report, and bank accounts. If there is information missing or that can’t be verified, that will delay the closing date. A closing will not happen without the underwriter’s approval.

What Can Cause Delays

When you make an offer on your new home, the anticipated closing date will generally be listed in the purchase contract. However, that doesn’t mean it is set in stone. A number of issues could cause delays in the process.

The financing documentation can be a major factor in delaying the date when you are closing on a home. There could be concerns about the home’s appraisal being too low, missing financial documentation, or changes in your credit between the time you were pre-approved and the period of time after you made the official offer. It’s best not to take out additional loans that could impact your debt-to-income ratio while waiting to close.

The closing process also involves a title search. If you encounter an issue with the seller having unresolved liens or judgments on the house, or if there are other ownership disputes during the escrow process, your closing date could be affected.

Have you requested that repairs be made on the house before you close? If the seller has been slow in making the repairs that were agreed to, or if the pre-closing walkthrough shows that the repairs have not been done satisfactorily, that could also cause delays in the closing process.

What to Bring

When your closing date finally arrives, you will be overloaded with paperwork. Some of it you will need to bring to the closing table, including:

  • Proof of homeowners’ insurance
  • Home inspection reports
  • Your contract with the seller
  • Paperwork the mortgage lender has provided you regarding your loan
  • A certified check, if necessary, for closing costs (often funds are transferred electronically)
  • A copy of your contract with the seller
  • A government-issued photo ID that lists your name as it will appear on the property’s title and mortgage.

What to Expect

You will have an attorney or mortgage agent with you at the table when you are closing on a home, to guide you through the paperwork you’ll be signing. Carefully review the legal documents presented to you as you prepare to sign them and assume ownership of your new home, which will typically include:

  • Signature affidavit
  • Escrow disclosure
  • Appraisal acknowledgement
  • Mortgage/deed of trust
  • Promissory note
  • Initial mortgage payment
  • Equal Credit Opportunity Act disclosure
  • Truth-in-Lending disclosure
  • Mortgage fraud statements
  • HOA documents (if applicable)
  • Certificate of occupancy (new construction only)

When all the paperwork is signed, the money is transferred, and all parties are satisfied that everything necessary has been completed, you can take your keys and move into your new home!

Fox Moving and Storage Nashville Will Help Move You!

Finding a new home is exciting but it can also be very stressful. At Fox Moving and Storage Nashville, we help you pack, move, and unpack so you have less to worry about as you are finishing up the process of closing on a home.  When you are ready to move within the greater Nashville area or across the country, give us a call!

We take every precaution necessary to maintain your safety and well-being throughout the process. Contact us for more information about your next move. Call Fox Moving & Storage Nashville at 615-770-3000 to learn more about our services and to get a free quote.