Closing on a Home

After searching for New Hampshire or Massachusetts real estate, viewing homes, and going through the waiting game of getting offers, inspections, and loan requirements in order, your time has finally arrived to close on that perfect home. So what can you expect?

The closing or signing appointment is the time when you sit down with a very large stack of all the official documents, get your chance to review them, and have anything explained as needed. Then you begin signing your name on the dotted line to make this home your own. After the closing, which can take well over an hour to complete, the final documents that show the change of ownership and your purchase are sent to the county government and recorded. It is then official. You own a new home!

Have all your documents and checks ready for the closing process

It can vary depending on the type of loan or if you are buying with cash, but typically you can expect to see and sign these documents:

  • Promissory note on your mortgage: This is a legal document that defines and commits you to the terms of your loan. It is called a promissory note because it is, in fact, your written promise to repay the loan. This document will include the amount of your payments, instructions for submitting your payments, and an explanation of penalties and fees you will incur if you stop making payments or are late with a payment.
  • Legal affidavits: You may be required to sign legal documents in which you swear that certain statements (for example, that you are still employed or that this new home will be used as your primary residence) are true.
  • The deed: A deed describes the property, its location and lot size, and lists who owns the property. Transfer of the deed to your name will occur at this time.

What do I need to bring?

You should bring the cashier's check for your closing costs (you will know the exact figure from the truth in lending statement) and a government-issued photo ID, such as your driver’s license or passport. Ask your lender if any other documentation is required.

When do I get the keys?

Usually, you'll get the keys to your new home at the closing, after the review and signing of all the documents, and the exchange of the closing cost check. Situations can vary, so ask your real estate agent what you can expect to occur and when.