The purchase of residential real estate begins when a seller places the home on the market, and the buyer makes an offer through the broker. If the seller accepts the offer, the buyer and seller execute a contract for sale. The contract comes with a number of riders, and those riders supersede portions of the agreement. Although there are some boilerplate riders, many specify elements of the transaction which the Buyer and Seller have negotiated independently. This can include anything from the condition of fixtures to conditions of financing. After the contract of sale agreement is executed, although sometimes beforehand, an inspection is done. It is important that the inspector look at every aspect of the structure, including the foundation, the roof, and the framing, where possible. The inspector should also pay attention to signs of water leakage or flooding or note newly painted areas that might hint at a recent repair. After the contract, the buyer has a deadline by which to obtain financing. Once the contract is signed, another inspection may be completed by the contingency date.
During this time the Bank will be conducting its own investigation and readying its file for closing. The bank will request income and employment verifications, tax returns, and may require explanations for any recent credit inquiries. The bank will also have an appraisal completed, and in some cases may have more than one appraisal. Homeowners insurance is purchased or substantiated, and proof of same is submitted to the bank.
After financing is approved, and a commitment letter sent by the bank, a title search is run. If the Title is clear, the buyer's attorney prepares the paperwork for a change of title, and title insurance, and a final closing date is scheduled. The title search can be completed earlier in the transaction, and sometimes an early title search is a good idea. The Buyer and Buyer's attorney determine a final cash figure, or the amount which the buyer needs to bring to the closing. This will cover any unpaid downpayment, closing costs, and paid property taxes and utilities which extend beyond the period that the Seller will occupy the premises, among other charges. A walkthrough is conducted the day before the closing. At the closing the buyer and seller sign the closing documents, and final loan documents, and final payment is made via cashier's check, the title is filed with the County Clerk, and the buyer receives the keys from the seller. Unless a period is identified wherein the seller is allowed to occupy the premises for an additional period, the Buyer then takes possession.
The attorney's function during a closing is to make sure the paperwork is in order, that each party has the documents it needs, that the documents are properly executed, that the correct consideration is exchanged, that the documents are properly filed, and to work with the title company. Essentially, it si the job of the attorney to make sure the deal happens in the way you want it to happen.
We work tirelessly to move your transaction along to meet your scheduling needs. We do not hand your file over to a paralegal and assign them to your file. Your closing is always handled by an attorney that you will find accessible and easy to reach.
If you want to know more about closings, or learn more about our services, call us today at (914) 366 8187. We look forward to serving you.