Whether you’re the buyer or seller, it’s a big day! You are either becoming the owner of a property, or you are surrendering ownership in return (ideally) for financial gain. Perhaps your transaction went smoothly, or perhaps there were bumps in the road, and yet it’s finally come down to the last bit of signing documents. It’s almost over, and the last thing you want are delays because you didn’t have everything you needed at the closing table.
What to Bring to The Closing
Photo I.D.: All parties must bring official, government issued photo I.D. such as a driver’s license or current passport.
Cashier’s Or Certified Check: You need a bank issued check or checks to cover your down payment and any closing costs you are responsible for paying. The title company cannot accept a personal check or cash, so it is important to plan in advance and bring a certified or a cashier’s check made payable to the title or closing company. Federal law requires that you be told the amount you need to bring to closing at least one day before settlement, so you should be able to pinpoint the exact amount for the check(s).
Your title agent can also tell you whether you should bring one certified check or two. In some instances, wiring funds is permitted, however, be sure to do so with plenty of time. Your closing will be delayed if funds are not available when you get to the signing table.
Proof of Insurance: Buyers must provide proof of insurance if required by the terms of the sale or by the lender. The closing agent needs to see documentation proving your coverage is in effect for one year. Even if your real estate agent tells you that the title company already has a copy, play it safe and have your proof of insurance with you.
Outstanding Documents: In the days before your closing pay very close attention to the instructions from your title or closing company. They will let you know if any additional documents are needed. If you have a copy of your sales contract, you can bring it with you to ensure all numbers and terms match the purchase agreement.
Items to Access the Home: If you are the seller, you will need to surrender all copies of all of the keys to the house, as well as garage door openers and alarm system codes. If you are responsible for any costs not covered by the proceeds of the sale, you must also bring a certified or a cashier’s check made payable to the title or closing company to cover those expenses.
Patience: Prior closings may run behind, wires may be delayed, paperwork can get stuck in printers. Chances are you’ve waited anywhere from a couple of weeks to a couple of months for this closing, a couple more hours may be frustrating, but worth it. Read a book, answer emails, play a game on your phone, anything to pass the time and keep yourself calm.
Whether you are the buyer or seller, being prepared will keep you calmer and allow the closing to proceed smoothly. If you are not sure you have everything you need, consult your title company representative. Finally, if you are buying a house, bring a keychain for those special keys to your new home!