You’ve made the offer and it has been negotiated and accepted. Now comes even more fun! Before you head to the closing table, there are a few things that need to happen after the offer has been made.
Choose a Closing Attorney
If you have a particular closing attorney you’d like to use, your REALTOR® can set it up and make sure your attorney gets everything he or she needs. Let your REALTOR® do the leg work! If you don’t know of an attorney you’d like to use, your REALTOR® can recommend a few for you to choose from or the Seller might have an attorney they’d like to use. Oftentimes, the closing attorney is selected by whoever is paying the closing costs.
Home Inspection (if you chose to have one)
Again, if you have a home inspector you’d like to use, just let your REALTOR® know. If you don’t have a home inspector you’d prefer, your REALTOR® can give you names, and you may choose from those. Your REALTOR® will schedule the home inspection with the inspector and the Seller.
- You may choose to be at the inspection or not. Most inspectors do not mind if you are there, but some would prefer that you wait until the last 30 minutes or so to come over and they will go over their findings with you.
- After the inspection is complete, the home inspector will type up a report and typically will email it to you and your REALTOR®. At this point, there may or may not be repairs that you will request the Seller to make. Some findings on home inspections are recommendations, and some are items that must be addressed before closing, such as a roof leak or an air conditioner that doesn’t operate properly.
- Read the report completely. Discuss with your REALTOR® the items that you would like to have the Seller complete or give you an allowance to complete on your own.
- Keep in mind, this will be another negotiation that could involve some compromise!
Your REALTOR® will schedule this inspection as well. Most often, the seller will be responsible for obtaining a termite inspection. If the seller is providing the letter, they will choose the company unless specified otherwise in the contract. A termite letter is required at closing by the lender. It’s a statement from the pest control company outlining any active termite infestation or if there has been past termite damage.
Finalize Your Mortgage Application
Now is when you sit down with your mortgage lender to finalize documents. You’ve likely obtained pre-qualification at this point. This means that most documents required for the formal application for a mortgage have already been given to the lender. The lender may ask you for additional documentation to supplement what you have already given them. It is very important that you check in with your lender as soon as possible after your contract to purchase has been accepted and signed by both parties. They will want a copy of the contract too!
Here are a few more things to remember:
- Homeowners Insurance – You will want to have a company selected, documents filled out, and the information relayed to your lender.
- Moving companies – Make sure to schedule the movers! Your REALTOR® can help you if you need names and numbers of companies to help you move.
- Utilities – Your REALTOR® can give you the names and numbers of the utility companies that service your new home. Schedule changeover of utilities before closing. Do not wait until the day of closing! Sometimes closings are delayed until the end of the day. You want to make sure to take care of it before the close of business!