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Selling a Home: Choosing a Closing Date

Wednesday, April 03, 2019   /   by Christian Robinson

Selling a Home: Choosing a Closing Date

Most sellers typically choose closing dates carelessly. Normally, a closing happens four to six weeks after the purchase and sales agreement is signed, although it could be sooner or later. Normally, as the homeowner selling a home you are eager to get your net proceeds and move on. There isn't a reason to delay a closing unless there is a special situation holding up the buyer’s loan.


Dates and days to avoid


For the least stressful closing, I recommend choosing to close on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday in the first three weeks of the month, if possible.  It's also wise to avoid the 1st or 15th.


Why?


Title companies get busy during the last week of the month. Also, Fridays aren't ideal because a delay on Friday means it will be handled after the weekend on the following Monday.  The 1st, 15th, and last day of the month also are very busy days for financial institutions which is where most people get financing.


If you must close during one of these hectic, busy times, plan as far in advance as you can.


Other considerations


It’s likely your buyer has to close on the sale of another home before closing yours unless they are a first-time home buyer. As the seller, you probably are moving to another home and conversely, you can’t close that sale until the first one closes. A crisis that delays the first closing could easily cause a chain reaction affecting the other homes. Leave a bit of wiggle room between closings. It's a good idea.


A buyer should be agreeable to closing early in the month. For example, let’s say the closing happens on May 5. The buyer will pay 26 days of prepaid interest at closing, and her first mortgage payment is likely due July 1.


If the home closes on April 30, she will only pay one day’s worth of interest, and her first mortgage payment is likely due June 1. So as a buyer, it would feel like the early-in-the-month closing is gaining them a whole month without a mortgage payment. It ends up costing the same amount of money.


The paper trail


If the paperwork isn't correct, regardless of the closing day you chose, then the home won't close. The escrow agent will notify you when all the documents are ready.


Many things can delay a closing, ranging from clerical errors to loan documents lost in the mail room.


Be sure that you and your Spokane Realtor review all of the documents for any errors like name, address, incorrect figures, or dollar amounts. All of it must be corrected. This is why both the seller and buyer must stay in touch with the closing agent and do everything they're asked to do to help closing by the timeline.


The parties


Sellers and buyers will have separate signing meetings with the closing agent. As a Spokane Realtor, I see closings taking place by attorneys or a title and escrow company. The escrow agent or attorney handles closing with two meetings. It's customary that the buyer and seller have two separate meetings to sign the necessary paperwork.


Remember that homeownership is officially changed the minute the signed and notarized closing documents are recorded at the county courthouse, which usually happens in Spokane before keys are exchanged. When the deed is recorded, the title of ownership transfers from seller to buyer. At the end of the recording, the seller will receive a check for the proceeds of the sale.

Feel free to reach out if you have any questions.
Christian Robinson
Realtor - Haven Real Estate
509-218-0498

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Haven Real Estate Group
Cambria Henry
304 W Pacific Ave; Suite 360
Spokane, WA 99201
509-590-4701

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