Prepare for Closing
We hustle so you don't have to. Closing on your home purchase should feel like a celebration.
Your title company plays an essential role in closing your real estate transaction. Get insight into what we do, who we interact with, and what to expect on your closing day.
What Does a Title Company Do?
A buyer makes an offer on a home and the seller accepts. From that point forward, a title company steps in as the intermediary between all parties to record the necessary legal documents, and ultimately finalize the purchase or sale of a real estate property.
A buyer and seller contractually agree on an offer price and set a closing date.
From start to finish, your Title Forward closing specialist will keep you up-to-date on how your transaction is progressing to make sure you close on time with no surprises.
The buyer receives a report, called a title commitment, that highlights any defects, liens, easements, or encroachments.
Your Title Forward closing specialist will answer any questions you have about your title commitment.
Prepare to Close
The title company schedules your settlement appointment, and then starts gathering the documentation needed to close from several other parties (HOA, lenders, HOI, etc.).
Title Forward schedules your settlement appointment weeks in advance at a location that's convenient for you.
Recording & Money
Title is transferred to the buyer and recorded with the county in the deed. Plus, money is distributed as outlined in the Closing Disclosure (CD).
Your Title Forward team leverages best-in-class technology to distribute money to all parties, and to digitize and securely store all your documents and records.
The title company performs a search to identify ownership history and any title issues, and then summarizes it in a report.
Your Title Forward team performs a comprehensive title search to uncover any title issues or competing ownership claims.
The title company works to clear the title with the help of the seller and agents.
If any title issues need to be addressed, your Title Forward team takes care of the details so you don't have to worry.
The buyer attends the settlement appointment to review and sign the final paperwork.
Your Title Forward signing agent greets you upon arrival and guides you through the appointment. Plus, your closing specialist is always available to answer questions.
Your title insurance policy is issued shortly after closing day.
Your Title Forward closing specialist will keep you in the loop on our progress, all the way through to the day when your title insurance policy goes into effect.
Who Else is Involved?
A title company may work with several different parties as it facilitates the close of your real estate transaction.
Here's just a few that Title Forward interacts with:
Homeowners Associations (HOA) &
Property Management Companies
Real Estate Agents
The buyer's and seller's real estate agents stay in close communication with their clients and help the title company gather information when needed. While a title company is performing a title search and gathering documentation from other parties, the buyer's and seller's agents are coordinating an inspection of the property and, if needed, negotiating adjustments to the final purchase price and closing date. If any title issues surface in the title search, the title company works with the seller and both agents to address the issues.
When you purchase a home with a loan, a lender will be involved. The lender ultimately approves and issues your loan, and typically has a set of requirements and conditions that need to be met to make this happen. A title company works closely with the lender to ensure these conditions are met. Lenders have control over and deliver the Closing Disclosure (CD), the document which contains all the numbers related to the purchase; however, a title company plays an integral role in helping the lender prepare the CD.
Homeowner's Insurance Companies (HOI)
Homeowners insurance, also referred to as hazard insurance, protects your interests should your home be damaged or destroyed. This type of policy is intended for private residences, and typically insures a homeowner against damage to a home or its contents, loss of use, and possibly even liability for accidents that might occur at the home.
Title companies work with homeowners insurance providers to make sure the invoiced amount for the first year is correctly stated on the CD. We also mail the initial check to the HOI company to make sure the first coverage period is paid in full following closing. The fee for the first term is listed on the Closing Disclosure (CD) and should be reflected in your closing costs.
As part of closing, some lenders may require a map of the property, called a survey, but other times the buyer can choose to request a survey or not. A surveying company can provide one of two types of surveys: a location drawing or boundary survey.
A location drawing shows the property as inspected, and depicts the locations of any other buildings or structures affecting the property. A boundary survey is more involved and is required to set or redefine a property's boundary line. If you are requesting a survey for a specific purpose, please let your title company know so they're sure to request the correct type.
Homeowners Associations (HOA) & Property Management Companies
If you are purchasing a property within a shared community, the title company reaches out to the homeowners association (HOA), or its property management company, to find out what HOA dues and additional fees are required at closing, and check for any outstanding dues owed by the current homeowner.
Depending on the date of closing, prorated HOA dues may be listed on the Closing Disclosure (CD) as a credit or debit to the buyer or seller appropriately. Additional HOA fees that may be required at closing include a setup or transfer fee charged to the buyer, or a processing, documentation, or resale disclosure packet fee charged to the seller.
County Records Office
Public records that track ownership, use, and assessments for a specific real estate property are filed at county records. When conducting a title search, a title company checks with the county to identify the current homeowner and ownership history for a property. Upon closing, a title company records the transfer of ownership in a deed and then makes it official by filing it with the the county.
Title Forward is proactive about your settlement. We make sure we've done everything possible in advance so your closing day is stress-free.
What Happens at Closing?
The final step in a real estate transaction is called closing or settlement. It's the big day when the buyer meets with a signing agent to review and sign the Closing Disclosure (CD), loan documents, if applicable, and title company documents; when money is distributed; and when equitable ownership is officially transferred from the seller to the buyer.
The date of closing is usually established up front when the buyer and seller contractually agree on an offer. The seller is not required to attend the closing in-person; but, does need to be available one way or another to sign the necessary paperwork.
What a homebuyer can expect on closing day:
Arrive at your appointment: Your signing agent will be there when you arrive to guide you through your settlement appointment. The seller, seller's real estate agent, and your real estate agent may also be present.
Sign your paperwork: Your signing agent will present the final paperwork for you to sign. If you have questions, your closing specialist will be available throughout the closing.
Notary and final review: Your signing agent verifies and notarizes your signature, and then the closing specialist double-checks everything.
Celebrate your closing: When your paperwork is complete, we'll notify you that everything is approved by all the stakeholders so you can celebrate!
More resources for you:
Closing Disclosure (CD)
Preview a standard Closing Disclosure before your closing day so you know what to expect.Download Sample Buyer CD
Download Sample Seller CD
To prepare for your closing day, download and complete these recommended steps.Download Buyer Checklist
Download Seller Checklist