Whether you are buying or selling a home, the real estate settlement (or closing) day is exciting and long-awaited. This is the day you sign the papers and get the keys, if you are the buyer, or you sign on the dotted line and pass off the keys (and the legal responsibility for the house), if you are the seller. Who are the players at the settlement table?
Varies by Area
The list of people involved in the closing varies by area. The sellers (the persons listed on the titles) along with their real estate agents have to be present at closing in some jurisdictions, but elsewhere, just the buyers and their agents are required to attend. Either the buyer or seller can send a representative with a proper real estate power of attorney. The other main attendees are the escrow officer at the title company and sometimes the lender. The escrow officer will explain each page that you are signing. They are impartial and do not represent either side in the purchase. They ensure the paperwork is accurately signed and research the title history of the home. They will also provide you a copy of your paperwork before you leave the closing.
Closing Is not Just a Formality
The settlement is not just a formality. The buyer must provide certified funds and sign a pile of legal documents. If you are buying and you have a problem with the title, the inspection, or even with the loan, these issues and most other legalities should be settled before the closing. In some situations, there may be last minute discussions about the closing costs, personal property left or being removed, time of possession, and even zoning or restrictions concerning use – legal issues about which a real estate agent should not offer you legal advice.
In these cases, having a real estate lawyer on hand when you buy or sell a home is a good idea, though only Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, South Carolina, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, northern New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Vermont require a closing attorney. Real estate attorneys offer advice on title issues, taxes, construction performance issues, zoning, and mortgage issues. These attorneys can often reduce most surprises at the closing table.
After you have saved for a home, gone through the process of negotiating for it, and qualified for a mortgage, you do not want anything to go wrong at the last minute. Work with people and professionals you trust to ensure your peace of mind at settlement. If you are selling your home and don’t want to wait months for closing, call us today at (877) 804-5252 or contact us to get an offer in hours from Express Homebuyers. We can close in just days!