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The Purchase and Sale is signed, now what?

The Purchase and Sale is signed, now what? Purchase & Sale is signed

Holy Moly! You found a home, you went through all the steps and you signed the Purchase and Sale’s agreement and watched a heck of a lot of money leave your account. Now what???

Well, if you haven’t done so already, apply for your mortgage! Pick a bank and submit an application. Once you do this the next important deadline is your mortgage commitment date. It is important during this time that you are monitoring your application process, getting the bank any documents they are requesting, and remind them of your deadline! If your deadline is creeping up and your still have not received a formal, written commitment letter from the bank reach out to your realtor and your attorney, we will need to extend this date out in order to protect that big deposit that you put down with the contract!

Psst, I know you want to start buying your new furniture, but don’t open that credit card, do any major spending on your current ones, and for the love of God, keep paying those bills! The majority of lenders do a ‘soft’ credit check before closing to make sure that your financial status has not changed. And, there is a world in which after receiving a commitment from your bank based on its original pull of your credit, the bank re-pulls your credit after the commitment contingency has lapsed based on adverse changes to your credit identified in a ‘soft’ check.

Get insured! In order to close, the bank will require you to have insurance on the property, with a receipt that shows you have paid that policy in full for 1 year. You will need to get a policy with coverage that is at least the amount of your new mortgage loan, but you will want to get more than that to make sure that both you and the bank are covered. If you get replacement cost coverage, the insurance binder that you bring to the closing (or more likely send to your attorney) must state that the insurance policy includes “100% replacement cost coverage.” Talk to your insurance broker about what you need; they will help you navigate this process!

Phew, we got our insurance and mortgage, and are cleared to close! The next deadline we care about is your closing. You and your realtor will set up a time to do a final walk through either the night before or the morning of the closing to make sure everything at your soon-to-be new home is as you saw it. Talk to your realtor about when the optimal time to do this is.

In the week before closing, you will also want to make sure that you change all the utilities into your name starting the day of the closing. This will make things as seamless as possible!

You are so close to being a home owner! Now, it is just the closing formalities. So, here is what do you need to bring:

  1. Yourselves: All borrowers are expected to attend the closing. In rare cases of exception, where someone cannot attend, special arrangements MAY be made with your bank. Talk to them as soon as you know (but with at least 10 days notice) to get approval on a power of attorney.
  2. A picture ID: They want to make sure the pretty face that shows up at closing is indeed yours!
  3. The Funds (obviously): You will receive the exact amount of money you need to close in the “Closing Disclosure,” which the lender is required to provide to you at least 3 business days before the big day. That balance should be paid to your attorney’s office prior to the close date. This can be in the form of a wire or a bank check – talk to your attorney about what they require. Note: if you are sending a domestic wire your should initiate it a day or two prior to the closing to ensure your money gets where it is going in time for your purchase. If you are wiring from a foreign account, you should call your bank to see how much time they need to send the payment.
  4. Your signing hand! There is a lot of paperwork, so drink a lot of water so you don’t cramp up.

Once you have signed all your documents they will either get physically shipped to, or put in an electronic line at the registry of deeds to get recorded. Once you are on record, the home is officially yours!

Final Helpful Hint: Residential Real Estate Tax Exemptions. Some cities/towns in Massachusetts have elected to apply a residential exemption to residential property that serves as the principal residence of its owner. Taxpayers who own and occupy their home can save on their real estate tax bill by having a portion of their tax bill exempted from taxation. The intent of this exemption is to promote owner occupancy. Some municipalities offering this type of exemption include Brookline, Boston and Cambridge; you may want to contact the Assessor’s office, to inquire about the process to obtain this type of real estate tax exemption.

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Kenda Coleman

Kenda Coleman is a Broker Associate with the Coleman Group.