What to expect at closing
CLOSING YOUR REAL ESTATE TRANSACTION IS ALWAYS EXCITING
Whether it’s your first home, second, or you’re an experienced real estate investor, things can feel like they’re happening fast – and often – some important things can go unexplained – like title insurance.
That’s why we’re here for you.
Closing the real estate transaction is the investigation made or actions taken by either a title agent or title attorney before the actual issuance of the title policy.
There are five basic steps that are followed in somewhat the same order in every real estate transaction.
- Starting the Process
A sales contract is signed by the buyer and seller and delivered to the closing agent, usually with a deposit check. The escrow is accepted by the escrow agent, usually by written notation on the contract. The escrow agent starts the closing process by opening a title order. The file begins to be processed. Tax information, loan payoffs, survey (if necessary), homeowner/maintenance fees, inspections/reports, and hazard and other insurances as well as legal papers are ordered. A title search is ordered.
- Title Search and Examination
This is a search made of the public records. Records searched include deeds, mortgages, paving assessments, liens, wills, divorce settlements, and other documents affecting title to the property. Title examination is the examination of the documents found during the title search that affect the title to the property. This is when verification of the legal owner is made and the debts owed against the property are determined. Upon completion of the search and examination, a title commitment/preliminary report is prepared and reviewed and sent out to interested parties.
- Document Preparation and/or Request to Produce
The closing agent reviews the new lender’s instructions/requirements, reviews instructions from other parties to the transaction, reviews legal and loan documents, assembles charges, and prepares closing statements and schedules the closing.
- Settlement/Closing the Transaction
Escrow/ Settlement agent schedules individual signing appointments and oversees closing of the transaction. Seller signs the deed and further closing documents for the title transfer. Buyer signs their portion and appropriate terms of purchase. Upon completion, all forms are notarized, and sent to the recording team. Our team submits the applicable pages to be recorded in the county in which the property is located.
After the recording has been completed, all parties are notified. Then, the seller, real estate professionals, lenders, and any other parties involved in the transaction are paid in full. Title insurance policies are prepared and sent to the new lender and buyer. This all happens without any further actions needed by the buyer or seller.