Now that the seller has accepted your offer you probably think all that is left to do is to sign on the dotted line. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. In fact, closing day can be as complicated as the rest of the homebuying process.
Here are some of the most important things you need to remember while waiting for closing day:
Your mortgage rate might expire
Mortgage interest rates can fluctuate on a daily basis and the rate you have been quoted by your bank is not going to last forever. Your rate will be “locked-in” for a set number of days, this could be 45 days, 60 days or more. You need to find out from your bank just how long your rate is good for.
This can become a problem because things like open permits, illegal renovations or other stumbling blocks could require a pause in the loan process until these issues are resolved.
An example of this was when a buyer in New York found out at the last minute that the previous owner had built an addition to the home decades ago but did not document the addition. He had to hire an architect and get things up to code. In the meantime, the homebuyer lost their quoted mortgage rate.
The mortgage process is not over
Just because you have completed the mortgage application, submitted all the paperwork and had the loan approved does not mean you are done.
Many lenders will verify your income, assets and credit rating up until the very last minute. That is why it is a good idea to not make big changes to your finances until the home is yours once and for all.
In other words, do not apply for any new credit cards, lease a car or switch jobs without first discussing things with your lender.
Before closing make sure everything is in order
Once the home closes it’s your responsibility. It is vital that before that happens you double and triple check that everything is in order. If repairs needed to be made, make sure they were done right. If there are any other issues, like building permits or liens, it is up to you to ensure they have been dealt with properly.
The actual closing
In most cases the home sellers and homebuyers never meet in person but sometimes they do. Just be sure if you are going the route of everyone meeting and sitting around a table, that you know your stuff. Know what to expect from the meeting and the important points that need to be addressed. This is one of the most important parts of the entire process.
How can you prepare?
The best way to be ready for closing is to do your research and keep an eye out for red flags. You also need a good team on your side of the table. These need to be people that know what they are doing and who you can trust.