The process of buying a new home can be long and tedious. You will need to find a house that meets your requirements, organize all your finances, bid on the property, and then hope the seller accepts your offer. If your offer is accepted by the seller, you still have some work to do. There is a list of pre-closing tasks that must be attended to before the title of the property is signed into your name. So, before you pop open the champagne, take a look at the list of pre-closing activities we have assembled below.
Show me the money! Or better yet, get ready to show your seller the money. Now that your offer has been accepted, it is time to contact your lender and inform them that you have a contract in place. If you have read and followed our previous post on reducing the stress of buying a home (here), then you have already been pre-approved for a mortgage and are ready for the loan to be finalized.
If you have not been pre-approved, this is the time to submit a mortgage application. After this you need to hope you are eligible for the loan amount you require. In addition to your offer on the property, it is typical to provide approximately three per cent to five per cent of the property’s value as a deposit. This shows the seller that you are serious about buying the home. This money is held by a neutral third party until all the conditions of the sale are met.
When working with a lender, it is common to have them request an appraisal of the property they are helping you purchase. After all, issuing a mortgage is an investment for your lender. Therefore, they want to ensure a smart financial decision is being made. The first step of the approval process is ensuring you are a quality loan candidate. Quality here means that you will not default on payments. The next step of your lender’s approval process is to validate the value of the property you are purchasing.
The property appraisal is an unbiased estimate of the fair market value of the home you are purchasing. This appraisal is provided in the form of an appraisal report. This report takes into account the price of recently sold properties in the area, as well as recent renovations. This report can include the age of the roof, the condition of the property, amenities, lot size, and location. Lenders require appraisals in the case of an unforeseen default. Therefore, the lenders will want to know that the property may be sold to cover the loan that was issued.
Inspections are typically written into sales contracts as a contingent clause. This means that the offer of sale is contingent upon an acceptable home inspection. When there is a competitive sellers’ markets with many prospective buyers, some individuals will attempt to make their offer more appealing by foregoing a contingent inspection. However, this can be a very dangerous game to play. Many properties (especially older properties) look in perfect condition to the untrained eye. Unfortunately, they may be hiding massive defects that will only be uncovered by inspectors with professional equipment.
Inspections help you avoid expensive catastrophes such as structural failures or water damage. Therefore, it is best to have the property inspected before closing. Otherwise, you have no idea what exactly you are buying. If any issues are uncovered during the inspection process, you can walk away from the transaction without penalty.
We have gone through three of the major tasks that need to be completed when in the process of closing your home purchase. However, there are many more minor tasks that will need to be completed before you close. Your real estate agent, mortgage broker, and lawyer will all be advising you along the way and informing you of exactly what needs to be done.
When you’re looking for more information about pre-closing, give me a call at (705) 333-4338 or get in touch with me here!