There are many tasks performed behind the scenes to complete the settlement of your new home. This page is designed to inform you of those tasks so you can anticipate what is needed, when it is needed, and the potential issues that can delay your closing. The process begins when we receive your Purchase Agreement (contract), usually 2-3 weeks before closing. From there:
The title search is ordered. We have a team of title examiners who review the title to your new property at the courthouse, researching ownership and chain of title, payment of real estate taxes, any lien(s) of record, and verifying the legal description.
As the title search is being done, the file is assigned to a processor. Our processor then begins to accumulate all of the other documents needed for your closing including the deed, the termite and moisture letter, survey, seller mortgage payoffs, repair bills and your home owner’s insurance policy, which you will have ordered and had sent to us. We then prepare the preliminary accounting statement (called the HUD-1 settlement statement) which is an accounting of all monies collected and distributed at closing. Upon receipt of the commitment to insure, also know as the title binder, all of these documents are faxed to your mortgage lender for their review and approval. This normally takes place 4-5 days before closing.
A title company closer then reviews the title binder. Potential risk in the transaction is then determined. Any clouds on the title, such as judgments, IRS liens, unreleased deeds or trust, and ownership claims are identified for correction prior to the settlement. Typically by then we have written instructions from your mortgage company regarding the terms of your loan.
Once your lender gives final approval to close the loan , they will send us your loan documents for signing and final adjustments to the HUD-1 settlement statement. This normally takes place the day before your scheduled closing, but could happen the day of closing. Your processor, from our office, will call to confirm the time of closing and give you the final amount to bring in “good funds” (i.e., wire). Under certain circumstances, we may be able to accept a cashiers check/certified check. This figure will include your down payment and your closing costs.
Buyers and sellers come in at their appointed times, (sometimes separately but often together). The sellers come in and sign their documents, normally a 15-20 minute appointment. The buyer’s side of the closing usually takes 45-60 minutes. Once the documents are signed and your closing funds have been received, the deed (which transfers ownership to you) and the deed of trust (your mortgage document) are taken to the courthouse the following day for recording. Funds are disbursed as soon as recordation has been confirmed and all parties receive their checks. Signed documents are returned to your lender.