Closing is the last step in the Austin home buying process. It’s when you go to the title company to sign the papers and officially become the owner of your new home. If you’re looking to buy a house and are curious what to expect at closing, here’s a brief rundown.
Prior to Closing
A few days before closing, the escrow officer and/or lender will send you a copy of the HUD-1. This is the sheet you received when you first applied for a loan showing your anticipated fees. At the bottom of the final HUD-1, it should say how much money you will need to bring to closing.
Bring a Cashier’s Check or Have Your Money Wired to the Title Company
Typically the title company and lender will prefer you wire the money from an approved account. They also might allow a cashier’s check from a local bank. If you’re sending a wire, have it arrive the day before to avoid any unexpected delays. If you’re paying by a cashier’s check, provide a contact name and phone number for the bank so the title company can verify the funds if necessary. Be sure to have this taken care of before you head to the title company to sign.
Bring a Photo ID
The escrow officer will need to verify your identity for their notary book. They generally ask for one form of ID, but sometimes ask for a second. Bring a driver’s license for sure, plus one other form of identification. Passports, social security cards, health insurance cards are usually acceptable forms of ID.
What Happens During Closing
During closing, you’ll go to the title company and sign a stack of paperwork for your loan, the deed and title insurance. You’ll also review a copy of the HUD-1.
Prepare to Sign a Lot of Documents Unless You’re Paying Cash
For any transaction, you’ll have your core list of paperwork that transfers title from seller to buyer. If you’re paying cash, that’s all you’ll sign.
If you’re getting a loan to purchase the property, there will be a much bigger stack. The size of the stack depends on the lender and loan program. You’ll even often see very similar documents telling you the same thing over and over again. The main message here is, if you don’t pay, you don’t stay and if you’ve lied on your loan application, you could go to jail for a very long time.
How Long Will Closing Take?
For a cash transaction, it can take as little as 15 minutes. If you’re getting a loan, it usually lasts 45-60 minutes depending on how many questions you have.
How Long Will It Take to Get the Keys?
Once the buyer signs all of the necessary documents required by the lender, the title company will send them back to the lender for their final approval. That process can take 10 minutes to 3 hours. As soon as the lender gives their final stamp of approval, they’ll instruct the title company to fund the transaction, which means you’ll officially be the owner. At that point, you’ll be able to get the keys. This usually happens within the same day if the buyer signs at the local title company.
What Can I Do to Make It Easier?
Overall the closing process is straight-forward, but little tedious, and a little patience can go a long way. With so much paperwork, it’s not uncommon for the escrow officer to need a few minutes to sort things out. Also, since you never know what can come up, we recommend that our clients not schedule movers for the day of closing. This eliminates unnecessary stress. The best way to make your closing a success is to be prepared and patient.
Considering Buying a Home in Austin?
We can help! We have a combined 55+ years of experience in real estate and can help you get a great deal. Check out our Austin Home Buyer page to learn more about who we are and how we work. Then, call us at (512) 827-8323 or email us at info@11OaksRealty.com to schedule a no obligation consultation.