Preparing for Closing
Your loan is approved, the inspections are complete, all your documents are ready – the day you have been waiting on has arrived, your closing! Be prepared when going to closing table, to help your closing run smoothly.
PRIOR TO CLOSING
- There are several individuals who will be present at the closing, including you, the buyer, and your realtor, the home seller and the seller’s realtor, the closing attorney, closing agent or title company representative, and in some cases your Mortgage Banker. In coordination with all these individuals, your closing day and time will be scheduled. Make sure to set-aside enough time for the closing, as the closing typically takes 1-2 hours.
- Documents to Bring to Closing. When you arrive at closing, make sure to have a government issued photo identification, such as your driver’s license, and the payment to cover your closing costs. Ameris Bank will prepare and provide to the closing attorney, closing agent or title company representative, all other necessary documents.
- A Final Walkthrough. Often times, buyers are allowed to do a final walk-through inspection of the home 24-hours before closing. This is recommended to determine if any damages or issues have occurred with the property between contract and closing, and it will give the buyer time to negotiate any necessary repairs with the seller.
- Documents at Closing. Anticipate signing several documents at closing. Prior to signing any documents, make sure that all the information is correct. The three important documents you will sign at closing are: the promissory note, which outlines that you promise to repay the loan under the agreed upon terms; the mortgage also known as the deed of trust; and the deed. You will receive a copy of all closing documents at closing or they will be mailed to your new address shortly after closing.
- Residence Status for Property Taxes. At closing, your closing attorney, closing agent or title company representative, will advise you on steps you may need to take to confirm your residence status with the property tax accessors office. Your action may be required to ensure your property is appropriately filed as either your primary or secondary residence. The residence type will affect the percentage of property taxes you will owe each year.
- Take the Keys! Congratulations, receiving the keys to your new home is the final sign that the home is yours. Enjoy!
- Your Closing Documents. Most likely a copy of your closing documents will be filed with your county’s record of deeds. As a best practice, make a copy of your closing documents. Store the original documents in safe keeping, such as in a safe deposit box or on file with your attorney.
- Transfer Utilities. In some instances, the seller may have canceled services. If this is the case, call your utility companies to schedule services to begin. In other instances, the seller is moving out right before you move in, and in which case many utility companies offer grace periods for the transfer of services. If this applies to you, right after closing, take the appropriate steps to transfer all utilities into your name.
- Change Your Locks. More than likely, there was a lot of traffic in and out of your home prior to closing, and many copies of the keys may have been made. As a best practice, consider changing the locks right after closing.