South Florida Real Estate | 12-Tips to a Successful Closing
By: Frank Vigliotti, REALTOR®, CDPE, ABR, PA
The real estate transaction is a detailed process that starts getting prequalified, if you are financing, and securing a qualified REALTOR®. I want to share with you the steps of the closing process. There are many steps to the day you actually get the deed to the property and it becomes your home. Some states throughout the USA have different laws affecting the closing. My tips today refer to the steps we take with our buyers here in South Florida.
(12) Steps to Closing | Helpful Tips
1) Don’t wait to get homeowner’s insurance. Some buyers wait until the last minute to get homeowner’s insurance and end up with no time to shop for the best value. A Binder of Insurance is required by the lender to close [if you are financing your purchase]. And most buyers, even when paying cash for their property will want to insure their investment.
2) As the closing date nears, we obtain a HUD-1, Settlement Statement from the closing agent. The HUD-1 is universal and line by line explains the charges in a transaction. This document will tell the buyer the amount of money they will need to bring to the closing table and for a seller, will tell them what they will receive at the day of closing.
3) Gather the approximate funds you need for closing into one account and leave time for deposits to clear.
4) Several days before closing arrange to wire funds to the Closing Agents bank account [most closing/title agencies require wire transfers on cash transactions] or obtain a cashier’s check from a local bank payable to the Title Agency who is closing your transaction. As your Realtors, we will coordinate this with you and your Title Agency.
5) Contact the Homeowner or Condominium Association immediately (if any), so you will be approved before the day of closing. Be sure to get the application to the Association, complete it and submit right away. It is usually stated in the Purchase Agreement the amount of days you will have to apply, typically 5-days. You will need the original certificate of approval at closing, signed by the association board and notarized.
6) Keep your Realtor, mortgage broker and the title company informed of any and all changes; for example, if you will be out of town on closing day, closing date has changed, etc.
7) Inform the title/closing agent of any special arrangements that may be required for closing. The signature of all parties to the transaction are needed to close. If it is necessary to send documents out of state or out of the country, additional time will be required and to ensure a smooth timely closing, it is imperative for the title/closing agent is imperative.
8) If a Power of Attorney will be used by any party at closing, the title company and the lender will need to approve it prior to closing. We recommend having us prepare it since it must be specific to the transaction.
9) Keep notes of names and contact information such as phone numbers and email addresses. Keep notes of conversations with everyone involved.
10) Leave yourself time. Many Buyers and Sellers plan their move out of one property into another on a tight schedule. It is less stressful if you give yourself a couple of days between in case either closing is delayed.
11) Bring picture ID to the closing. Everyone who signs documents (Buyers, Sellers or any person acting on their behalf) must bring a picture ID. A driver’s license, passport or other government issued picture ID is acceptable.
12) Be flexible and allow sufficient time to attend closing. It may take more than one hour for the documents to be explained and signed.
The Henri Frank Group at RE/MAX co-founded by Florida State REALTORS®, Henri Vezie and Frank Vigliotti have closed hundreds of transactions throughout their career. With each successful closing, they add to their experience, which is important to real estate buyers and sellers.
For more information about Buying and Closing a Real Estate transaction, go to our website, click this link: https://henrifrank.com/buyers/checklist/