Keys to Homeownership: Closing
Congratulations, your offer has been accepted, the home passed inspection and you are finally ready for the closing. This is the last contractual hurdle you’ll face, but until the closing is behind you, you can’t call yourself a homeowner quite yet.
Your real estate agent is an expert in many things related to buying a home, so make sure you ask him or her as many questions as you need to in order to be 100 percent clear on what the closing process entails. Before you finalize your purchase, you may want to consider the following tips.
Complete the Final Walk-Through
Before you close, you’ll want to make sure any repairs that were supposed to be made after the home inspection were completed and the house is ready for you to move in. If any promised repairs were not made, document the problem and go directly to your real estate agent, who will help you figure out a resolution.
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Proof of Insurance Required
Your lender will likely require that you provide evidence of insurance for your new home at the time of the closing. The policy should list all the buyers as well as the lender. Well ahead of the closing, contact your insurance agent to purchase insurance for your new home. Your insurance agent can help you obtain proof of insurance to bring to the closing.
Review All Documents
It’s crucial to review all documents before you sign them. If you don’t want to review them for the first time at your closing, you may be able to read through them in advance. Lenders are often required to share mortgage documents with you at least 24 hours in advance, upon your request.
While sifting through pages of legal documents may not sound like your idea of a fun evening, understanding exactly what you’re signing is extremely important. Your agent will be able to answer most of the questions that may come up as you go through the documents, but you may also want to turn to your lawyer with questions about legal terminology you may be unfamiliar with.
Among the documents you’ll sign is the HUD-1 Settlement. “This document breaks down all of the costs at closing both for the seller and the buyer,” says agent Ron Aiosa of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. “That is a document you’ll need when you file your tax returns, so please remember to keep it in a safe place.”
After you’ve signed the final document, you’ll receive the keys to your new home. Now, it’s official — you are a homeowner!