mortgage closing

The Fastest Way to get from Offer to the Closing Table

You put in an offer on a home and the seller accepted it – you couldn’t be more excited! But now the waiting game begins – what once felt like a whirlwind of events, may now feel like the longest time of your life.

Fortunately, it doesn’t take ‘forever’ to get to the closing table and there are a few ways you can help speed things up to make sure you close on time.

Provide all Required Documentation

If you followed the appropriate steps, you already have a pre-approval for a mortgage. While it’s the right start, it’s not the final step. If you read over your letter, you’ll see the conditions you must satisfy to close the loan.

Once you find a home and have an executed purchase contract, get the documentation together needed to clear your conditions. For example, you may need:

  • Updated pay stubs to prove you’re still employed
  • Documentation to prove you cleared up collections or large debts
  • Asset statements to prove you have the funds to close on the home (and they are yours)
  • Gift letters from anyone helping you with your down payment

The faster you provide the documentation, the faster underwriting can clear the conditions.

Work with a Reputable Real Estate Agent

A big part of the loan process is the appraisal. If the home doesn’t appraise for at least as much as you offered, it can delay or even cancel the loan. While no one has a crystal ball, working with a reputable real estate agent who knows the area well can prevent difficulties with the appraisal.

Your agent should be able to tell you if the amount you’re offering or the seller is asking is within reason. The right agent can spot an overpriced home and won’t appraise. While it’s not a guarantee your appraisal will pass with flying colors, it will help speed things along.

Negotiate any ‘Issues’ Right Away

If you have an inspection contingency on the home, work with the seller when you receive the inspection report to clear up any issues. Your real estate agent should do the negotiating for you. It’s important to be clear in your requests and flexible with what you’ll accept while knowing what the lender will require for the home to pass the appraisal.

If negotiations drag on too long it can delay the entire process because the lender can’t order or approve the appraisal until you’ve reached an agreement.

Work with your Loan Officer

The fastest way to get from the offer to the closing table is to stay in contact with your loan officer. You’ll know the status of your loan, what conditions you must satisfy, and what steps are outstanding that are beyond your control.

On average, it takes 30 to 45 days to get to the closing table, but it takes cooperation and professionalism from all parties involved. Do your research and use your common sense to realize when everyone is on the same page or when you may face struggles getting to the closing table. 

Written By The Mortgage Loan Center.