5 Ways to Protect Yourself as You Close on Your New Home

You’re so close to finally getting those keys. You’ve circled the closing date on your calendar and you’re headed toward the finish line. You feel ready. But ARE you?

Grab a pen and paper and get set to check off the final to-do list. (Be sure to check with your real estate agent and closing company for full details.) We’ve included some tips to protect you and your investment in the home stretch! (Get it? HOME stretch?)

 1. Clear your title

Your mortgage lender will require a title search, and you’ll need to purchase title insurance. This protects you from ownership claims by another party or any hazards on the property itself.

PRO TIP: Read our blog, “What exactly IS a clean title (and how do I get one?)” As always, we at Clean Title are here to help!

 2. Check-in with your loved ones

Buying a home is one of the biggest (and costliest) life decisions a family makes. It can be really challenging for a relationship. 

PRO TIP: Take a minute (and a deep breath!) and confirm you’re on the same page. You should both be feeling confident about the process. If not, check out our blog, “Can I back out of a home purchase before closing?

3. Check off that pesky paperwork 

When you entered due diligence after signing the contract, you got a whole list of things to do to move forward with the sale of the home. How’s that going? 

PRO TIP: Don’t be afraid to check often. Asking a lot of questions and being forceful with your requests can save you a lot of time if things look like they’re stalling out. Here’s just a smattering of what you need to verify:

  • Is the appraisal completed?
  • Is your financing and mortgage paperwork moving forward? 
  • Has your home been inspected and are repairs underway? 

Taking care of these contingencies also protects you from losing money in a home purchase. See our blog post “5 things to expect after your offer is accepted (and how to avoid pitfalls)” for more details. 

 4. Review the closing disclosure

This official document, also known as the settlement statement or HUD-1, states your exact mortgage payments, the loan’s terms and closing cost fees you’ll be expected to pay.

PRO TIP: Your lender gave you an estimate for your loan. Make sure to put the estimate side by side with the closing disclosures to look for any differences. This will let you know how much money to bring the closing and in what format (Certified check? Cashier’s check? Sometimes even a credit card!)

 5. Do a final walk through

The last thing to do, usually the day before closing, is to revisit your soon-to-be home. Verify the required repairs are completed and there hasn’t been any damage since your home inspection. Is everything the seller agreed to leave still in place?

PRO TiP: get all your paperwork together the night before closing. You’ll need:

  • Proof of homeowners insurance
  • A copy of your contract with the seller
  • Your home inspection reports
  • Any paperwork that the bank required in order to approve your loan
  • A government-issued photo ID
  • Your funding for closing costs

BONUS TIP

Three more things you’ll need at a closing: your real estate agent, your patience, and a strong hand. (You’ll be signing so many documents!) But since you’ve prepared carefully—thanks to your diligent research and a little advice from this blog—this part is a walk in the park. And right afterward, it’s a walk through your new front door. Congratulations!

 

At Clean Title, LLC, we’re researching the past to protect your future! We’re very proud of our track record and the recommendations our clients have shared. (Check out some of our reviews on our Facebook page.)

Check out our home buyers’ Clean Title FAQs and reach out at 985-277-5095 anytime with questions!

Disclaimer: This blog is not intended to give legal advice. Keep in mind that each state has different real estate laws and that throughout Louisiana, rules, and customs can vary among parishes and regions. If you’re buying or selling a home, please check with your local Real Estate professional or Real Estate Attorney on the specifics of all Real Estate matters.

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