In the final part of our three part series: The Closing, we will discuss the mechanics of getting through a closing. You’ve spent the last two months dealing with home inspections, calls from your agent, calls from your attorney, calls from your mortgage broker, movers, utility companies, and all of your other responsibilities.  Frankly, buying a house can take work, dedication, and perseverance. Luckily, closing, the exclamation point of the entire process, is quite possibly the easiest step of all!

 Relax: Buying a home is a great accomplishment.  Take a moment to remember that all of the work to this point has brought you to the last step in your journey to home ownership.

 Bring Your License: Some of the documents you will be signing must be notarized. In all likelihood, the closing attorney doesn’t know who you are and will require a picture ID to verify your identity.  Under the Patriot Act, lenders are required to verify the identity of their borrowers; thus, lenders will require a photocopy of your license.

 Bring Your Checkbook:  The bulk of the funds brought to closing must be by certified check or wire transfer.  As is often the case, last minute adjustments and tweaks may make it necessary for the buyer to provide additional funds.  By bringing a checkbook, you are streamlining the process which allows you to take the keys sooner.

 How to Sit: As silly as it may sound, the logistics of where to sit is half the battle. Take a seat near the head of the table where the closing attorney will be set up.  As Seller or Buyer, you need to be within arms reach of the closing attorney so that documents can be passed efficiently.

 How to Sign: Ask the closing attorney how you should sign your documents. Contrary to what you may think, this level of care prevents the necessity of resigning every document at a later time. Be particularly careful to date all documents, where required, with the appropriate date.

 Why so Many Initials?  Initialing the bottom of a document, as directed by the closing attorney, is an efficient way to prove that a page was in the stack of paper signed at closing.  While it may seem like a pain, think of it as your protection as it prevents anyone from nefariously adding extra pages to the documents you are signing.

 Smile: By the time you get to the bottom of the stack of documents, it’s easy to forget that you just bought a new home! The closing, while sometimes long and tedious, should be a happy occasion.

The closing is the cap to a long process toward purchasing a new home. While there is no real substitute for experience, Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 of this series each built on your existing knowledge.  Hopefully, by reading these articles, the closing process is a little less mysterious and you are able to enjoy the home-buying process.

Stiles Law is a firm concentrating in real estate conveyancing and mortgage lending services, representing buyers, sellers, borrowers, banks, mortgage companies, investors, builders and developers in all of their real estate and mortgage transactions.