Buying a new home can be exciting; you’ve found the perfect location and listing, and the seller has accepted your offer. However, there is a vital process that needs to be navigated: the real estate closing process.
Now that you’re ready to go into closing, it’s time to get familiar with the folks involved. While this may vary depending on you transaction, these are the people are generally present when you are closing on a new home.
1. The Purchaser
At the time of closing, be prepared to sign an overwhelming amount of documents. You will be signing for the real estate closing, as well as your mortgage. This is an important time to lean on your real estate closing attorney.
Responsibilities of the Purchaser:
- Obtain funds to buy the property
- Deliver the funds for the property
- Signing the deed, bill of sale, affidavit of title, and other documents
As the home buyer, it is important that you trust in the people who have a duty of loyalty to you. While everyone in a closing is motivated to get it done, they all have their own reasons. Therefore, it is imperative to utilize and rely on your closing attorney during this process.
2. Buyer’s Real Estate Attorney
The role of your closing attorney is a vital one. During closing, the information in the closing document will be clearly explained to all parties.
Responsibilities of the Buyer’s Real Estate Attorney:
- Ensure the terms are acceptable
- Provide for contingencies
- Make sure the seller delivers the property
- Ensure the title is insured
- Oversee the funds, so they are not delivered to the seller until the buyer receives the deed
Your real estate attorney has a professional obligation to you. Confidentiality is their primary duty.
3. The Seller
Unlike the buyer, the seller does not always attend closing. Sellers are able to pre-sign the deed and other transfer documents.
Responsibilities of the Seller:
- Deliver the property on the terms provided in the contract
4. Seller’s Attorney
Closing attorneys for sellers are focused on document preparation. They will ensure deeds, insurance documents, and payoff letters are accurate and finalized.
Responsibilities of the Seller’s Attorney:
- Put the sellers terms in writing
- Deliver the title to the property
- Ensure the buyer’s funds are delivered before releasing the deed
5. Real Estate Agents
Both the buyer and seller may have a real estate agent present. However, this is not always the case. Bringing the buyer and seller is the primary role of realtors, as well as making sure the deal closes.
6. Loan Officer
A loan officer is likely to attend, although it is not required at closing. Essentially, the role of the loan officer at closing will be providing explanations of rates and fees. This will help smooth the buying process.
Responsibilities of Loan Officer:
- Get sufficient funds for the buyer to close the deal
- Gather information to get a mortgage and coordinate with the lender
7. Loan Underwriter
Loan underwriters play a vital role in whether or not you get your new home. Underwriters assess your risk in borrowing, as well as review if the property you are buying carries risks.
Responsibilities of Loan Underwriter:
- Approve or deny your loan
- Before closing, can impose additional requirements
8. Title Company
The title company ensures that the title to a piece of real estate is legitimate. Additionally, the title company may act as the escrow agent between parties. They will collect fees for homeowners insurance, title insurance, and property taxes. Then, they will distribute it to the right organizations.
Responsibilities of the Title Company:
- Issue the title insurance policy
- Identify possible defects in the title
9. Homeowner’s Insurance Broker
Your insurance broker will issue an insurance policy. This will insure against fire, flood, and other catastrophes or liabilities.
Generally speaking, the people involved in your real estate closing process will be experienced. It is important to allow them to do their jobs, as they are likely to have thousands of deals under their belt.
In terms of real estate lawyers, they will protect your interests and minimize your risks. Real estate attorneys specialize in these transactions. And, they ensure that you are protected at closing and into the future.
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