Important! Protect your credit
Your credit will be checked again before closing, and people have tragically lost their house because their credit changed between pre-approval and closing day.
Don’t open any new loans or credit cards, make purchases on credit, close out accounts, or change anything about your credit, debt or credit lines, without talking to your loan professional first. This includes buying furniture on layaway, getting a car or boat loan, etc.
The lender does an appraisal. This is the bank making sure that the property is worth what they’re lending for it. The buyer pays for this either at closing or when the appraisal is done, approximately $400-600.
This is when the lender gets underwriting done on your loan, to make sure that all of the required paperwork and details are in place. They may ask you for additional documentation, verifications, and more. It’s best to provide what they ask for in a timely manner. With a good lender, it’s generally nothing to worry about. When the loan is totally finalized, the lender will issue a ‘clear to close’ notification.
This is the time to get your moving plans in order, start packing, close out your apartment lease, etc. If you need a temporary storage unit, etc, this is a good time to set that up. Check out your local neighborhood pages or buy nothing groups for boxes and packing materials, or to get rid of things that don’t need to make the move with you.
Call your utility companies and change them over to the new address as of the date of closing. Let us know if you need help identifying which utilities are active on your new property.
You need to have your homeowner’s policy set up at least a week or two before closing. The lender needs to have proof that you have an insurance policy, and your closing costs will include a few months of your insurance premium paid in advance.
A day before closing, or the morning of, we’ll do a final walkthrough of the house together. In most cases, this is a formality. But we always do it to make sure that the house is in the condition that you expect it to be in prior to signing papers and taking possession.
Congratulations! You’re a homeowner! Closing takes an hour or two and you will sign a lot of papers, get the keys and deed to your new house, and maybe even meet the seller. It’s usually a fun, exciting day!