Whether you are closing on your first home, a second home, or conducting a refinance of your existing home, the process can come with much stress and anxiety. One way to alleviate that sense of being overwhelmed during a home closing is to be as prepared as possible. To that end, Hunter Law Firm has outlined key items you should bring to your real estate closing in this article. You will also feel more prepared at your closing by reviewing Hunter Law Firm’s list of common legal documents signed by buyers during typical closings in Hampton Roads.
You, the buyer, will need to attend to sign multiple legal documents. Ensure that the individual or individuals who will be on the title to the home are present. A closing agent, a neutral third-party ensuring that all elements of the closing are conducted correctly. The closing agent can be a title officer, escrow company officer, or attorney. Both the buyer and seller agree upon the closing officer in the original offer. If the closing is for your first home, you may also want your attorney present. You will find it comforting to have an advocate for your best interest, your lawyer, present at the closing. They will be a great asset in answering any questions or addressing any problems that may arise.
While the meeting will entail you signing a pile of papers, there are several items you will need to bring to the meeting. The last thing you want is a delay in the closing because you forgot a vital piece of documentation. The following list outlines necessary paperwork that will be required to make your real estate closing as smooth as possible.
You, the buyer, will need to present two forms of identification. One of the forms of identification will need to be a valid photo ID. Ideally a state-issued driver’s license or passport, the photo ID you provide needs to be current and government issued.
You may elect to pay closing costs and/or a down payment at closing. If so, make that payment in a cashier’s check or certified check. Do not bring cash or a personal check. Your attorney will inform you of the exact payment amount in advance of the final closing meeting. Federal law dictates that you be informed of the amount a minimum of one day prior to the settlement. You may need one or two checks. The closing agent will provide you the details of how many checks you will need at closing, to whom they be written, and the amounts. You may also submit your payments by wire. If you chose to pay at closing using a wire transfer, prepare to do so several days in advance as wire transfers take extra time to process. And be conscious of the bank work week, if your closing is on a Monday you may need to wire the funds on a Thursday to ensure payment is made on time. It is not uncommon for real estate attorneys ask that buyers deliver funds the day before the closing to avoid any delays.
You will need to provide proof that you have insurance and have paid the policy for a year. Sometimes proof of insurance has been submitted earlier in the process, but to be safe, bring a copy at closing as well. Some areas of Hampton Roads will also require proof of flood insurance.
It may not be necessary to bring your final purchase and sales contract to the closing. However, we find it helpful in comparing details of the closing contracts with the purchase agreement in hand to double-check.
You may want to come to the closing armed with your favorite document signing pen. A bulk of your closing will consist of you autographing legal documents. The following list outlines documents commonly signed by home buyers in real estate closings.
The promissory note is your binding promise to repay your mortgage loan. The promissory note will outline the total amount you owe on the loan (including interest rates, term or duration of the loan, and other pertinent details of your loan).
The deed of trust is the document that pledges the real estate as security for your loan. Essentially a deed of trust creates a lien on your home in order to secure repayment of a loan. If you default on your loan, the deed of trust provides the legal right for your lender to seize your home through foreclosure.
The escrow account statement is a breakdown of the money in your escrow account. It includes details of principle plus interest of the loan and escrow payments as well as a twelve-month expected monthly escrow balance. The escrow account disclosure statement is a mandated component of the closing under the 1975 Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act.
The promissory note, deed of trust, and initial escrow account disclosure statement are closing document staples. There are additional documents that you may also need to read and sign at the closing.
Buying a home is an exciting and stressful process. Committing your family to a home mortgage and loan is a significant decision. The closing process is the final step in the home purchase process. Once the closing is complete there is no turning back. Take steps to having your best interests at the forefront of the closing and real estate purchase process by having an experienced real estate lawyer by your side.
Hunter Law Firm has an experienced team of real estate lawyers ready to guide you through your next real estate transaction. Serving all of Hampton Roads, Hunter Law Firm’s real estate lawyers will provide you with the legal counsel you can rely on. Contact us online or call one of Hunter Law Firm’s convenient offices to schedule your appointment today.