What Should I Expect At My Closing?

So what should you expect at your closing? It depends. If you are the seller? Hopefully a big check. If you are the buyer? A set of keys, a big loan and a shot at the American dream.

This the culmination of a long process for the sellers, buyers and agents. The lawyers? Not so much. They are less emotionally invested and came in later to the whole thing. And that is a good thing. You need someone who can step back and focus on your interests. It is one of the benefits here in New York,  where laws require legal representation in all transactions.

Just make sure you have all your ducks in a row before getting to the closing. A good lawyer will tell you exactly what to bring and how much money the cashier’s check needs to be. Most of the heavy lifting is over.

Put aside one to two hours. It probably won’t take two hours, but it doesn’t hurt to build in a little extra time. When you get the keys, you are going to want to go straight to the new house and experience the overwhelming feeling of responsibility of ownership as you walk in the door.

In the situation where you are the seller, once you hand over the keys, you are going to want to go out and celebrate that (hopefully) big check you just got with a libation of your choosing.


What You Need

Photo ID

Certified Check

Any outstanding documents that are owed to the mortgage company

home buying process


What You Need

Photo ID

The Keys

You are going to be signing a lot of documents. And initialing lots of documents too. From promissory notes to mortgage agreements to titles changing hands, the legal papers will be flying across the table. And you will need to add your John Hancock to most of them. The gist of these documents are, pay your mortgage on time and there won’t be a problem, capisce?!?

The good thing is, you will have plenty of helping hands to guide you. Hopefully your lawyer, and the other party’s attorney, will have a reasonable amount of experience in real estate. Sometimes, you might have a lawyer who is family member or a trusted confidante on one side, without the nitty gritty real estate industry knowledge that most lifers have. That can make the agents and brokers a little uncomfortable. But, in the grand scheme, all the parties there are in the service of the deal. No one wants the agreement to fall apart on the closing date. As long as you have people on your side that you trust, it’ll get done.

If you are selling, what should your house look like? “Broom clean” as the industry parlance goes. All your possessions should be out and the house should be move in ready. Be prepared to give over temporary alarm codes if needed or last-minute information regarding the utilities.

If you are buying, make sure that you have contacted the utility companies in advance, so that you can be sure to have heat, electricity, water, and, most important, WiFi. You do not want to move in without WiFi.

When it’s all over, shake hands and move on to the next phase of life.