New Homeowner’s Guide to Closing on a House

Closing on a House

Buying a house is most likely the most significant purchase and investment you’ll ever make in life. It’s simultaneously an exciting and stressful endeavor. And it’s also something that will impact you in numerous ways for years to come. It’s no wonder why you should not rush into such a decision and only buy a house you feel comfortable with and at the right time and in the right place. The house closing process is one of the culminating parts of getting into your home. This is when you sign the final documents and wrap everything up prior to officially taking ownership and moving in. There are other important facets, such as getting top-rated insurance coverage like Progressive home insurance. But arriving at the closing meeting prepared is as important as anything when you buy a house.

Tips for Closing on a House

01. Home Inspection and Appraisal Process

Home Inspection and Appraisal

Before closing on your loan, there are a few final pieces to wrap up. These items will give you peace of mind and ensure that you’re ready to move into the home and that it’s the right place for you. First, make sure that a licensed professional does an inspection. You are welcome to participate in the inspection, too. The inspector will identify areas of concern that present unsafe conditions, code violations, or other causes for repair. Some people opt out of the inspection, but this is almost always unwise. Though you may not want to fork out the $500 or so for one, you could pay considerably more to make repairs and replacements down the road. You can also order an appraisal to verify that the purchase price is fair. If you are unhappy with the results, you can back out of buying the home without losing the earnest money you put down.

Must Read: 7 Things You Should Check in a Home Inspection Checklist

02. Finalize the Financing

Many buyers get preapproved for a mortgage loan before ever speaking to a lender. This helps get the ball rolling on securing the home, but it’s not the final say. As house closing approaches, the lender will hire an underwriter to verify that your finances are in order and that you indeed qualify for the loan amount. The underwriter will take a look at your income and credit score, making sure that you have submitted all necessary documentation properly and accurately.

03. Final Walk Through Before Closing on a House

Final Walk Through Before Closing

Within one day of the closing, you should be able to walk through the home to double- and triple-check on the condition and move-in readiness of the property. Many buyers like to take their real estate agent along with them. As you do a walk-through, point out any items that the seller didn’t address from the inspection. Don’t be afraid of being picky either. It’s better to spot small stuff now than to overlook it and have it turn into a larger issue down the road that you’ll have to fix.

04. Bring the Necessary Documentation

Documents for Closing on House

When you arrive at your closing appointment, you certainly don’t want to forget anything. Ensure that you are prepared with all the correct documents and items so that the closing will go smoothly. You’ll want to bring the following:

  • Driver’s license
  • Inspection reports
  • Contract with the seller
  • Evidence that you have homeowners insurance

Be aware that the closing meeting can take up to an hour. There are a lot of documents to review and sign. However, once this process is over, you get your house key, and you can officially move into your new home.

In the end, the house closing process can seem daunting, but if you take the right steps in advance, you can feel confident and ready going into it. Your real estate agent can guide you all the way as well.

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