Closing on a real estate sale is essentially the process of passing ownership of a home from one party to another. While there are several key players who assist in this along the way, the title company (and its agents) are there the guide the settlement proceedings along and put together the pieces for the big day.
You may wonder what goes on behind the scenes when getting your home loan ready to close. Here’s a closer look at what what title agents do to prepare for your settlement and get you into your new home as soon as possible.
Behind the Scenes
The average home loan takes about 45 days to close. During this time, a number of steps must take place to ensure a timely, organized, and proper settlement transaction. Title agents take over the process once the real estate contract has been ratified and the request for title on the property has been submitted to the title agency.
The first step on the title agent’s part is to conduct a title search on the property to make certain that it can be properly transferred from the current homeowner to the party seeking to purchase. A title search takes anywhere for three to five days to conduct, on average. During this time, the settlement agent will check public records and additional sources to learn if any liens or other defects are clouding the title. If defects are identified, they must be resolved and the title rendered clear before the parties can close the real estate transaction.
Once the title search is complete, the settlement agent works to collect all of the documents pertaining to the closing process. This includes any property-related information and mortgage details. Compiled into a title binder, the documentation is then forwarded by the title company to the seller’s title agent along with the buyer’s mortgage lender.
The title agent is also responsible for retrieving the loan payoff amount for the seller. At this stage in the process, provided that any title issues have been resolved, the title agent will issue a clear title and schedule the closing date and time.
The Day of Closing
In the days leading up to the closing, and sometimes on the day of, the title agent will receive the closing documents from the lender. These documents are then scanned, placed in proper order, and prepared for the buyer or buyer’s representative to read through and sign when it’s time to close on the loan.
Closing day is exciting for everyone. As title agents, we work to make the process of closing on a home as smooth and streamlined as possible. For more on what goes into preparing for a real estate settlement, get in touch with the Linear Title & Escrow team today.