5 Easy Steps for a Smooth Closing Process
Updated: Feb 19, 2020
When your client is ready to buy or sell a home, picking the right title company will determine whether your house-hunting process rolls over smoothly or not. Your title company should be reliable, trusted, and communicative throughout the entire closing process! However, to ensure the closing process goes as smoothly as possible, here are some simple steps to take on the front end to help title processors exceed your expectations.
Provide Your Commission and Broker Fees with the Contract
The process can be busy; however, it is imperative that you provide the title company with your commission or broker fee. In some cases, unfortunately, this issue isn’t caught until you are sitting with your clients at the closing table, which can make for an awkward conversation about why there is an extra $150.00 broker fee that the buyer owes. If we can get all the commission and broker fee information up front and then the agent double checks their fees when we send out the first ALTA, we can prevent this awkward conversation!To ensure that this problem doesn’t continue, please provide the commission percentage and broker fee immediately when sending the contract to your title company.
Provide HOA Information
To help ensure that the Homeowners Association is ordered in a timely manner, please provide the HOA information in the appropriate section on page 10 of the contract. Providing this information when the contract is sent to the title company will help save time and money for you, your title company, and your client. HOAs have started charging rush fees on orders that are needed “quickly”. Quickly can sometimes mean two to three weeks and those fees have been as high as $350.00! If we get the HOA information on the front end, we can order the statement of accounts quickly and avoid the extra fees. However, if there is not an HOA for the property, please state so in the contract as well.
Correct Spelling/Vesting of Names
Correct spelling of the buyer’s/seller’s name is crucial for a smooth closing. It is common for a nickname to be on the contract because it’s the everyday name the client is known by, however the full name of the client needs to be displayed on the contract for legal purposes. The vesting will need to be spelled correctly for the conveyance, and sometimes the contract does not have everything right. If the information is not taken down properly, any misspellings could lead to problems later down the road and unfortunately, down the road usually ends at the closing table. Having to go back to a lender and let them know that names are spelled wrong, is one, never fun and two not a fast process. And nobody wants to sit and stare at their clients waiting on the new documents to arrive.
Lender Information / POA
Adding the lender’s information when sending the contract over is a tremendous time saver for the title processors. Once we receive a contract, we determine if there will be a lender involved and will reach out at the appropriate time for a title request. Unfortunately, we are unable to order a title work without a request from the buyer’s lender. By sending the lender’s contact information it will save time for the respective parties. Will there need be a Power of Attorney? Agents, ask your clients this question as soon as possible. If the answer is “yes” then contact your title company with the information. Knowing beforehand streamlines helps the process for all parties involved and eliminates issues later throughout the closing/title process. Finding out two days before closing that there needs to be a POA and the person signing the POA is in a middle eastern country is a little stressful for everyone involved. (Not that we are speaking from experience). Getting POAs signed early and the original in the file ready to go to the register of deeds office, helps those closings run very smooth.
Review / Approve the ALTA
One of the final steps of the closing process, a title processor will send an ALTA document to the agent for review. It is imperative for you, the agent, to thoroughly look over the document for any mistakes or changes that need to be made. Title processors try their best to make the form as correct as possible, however mistakes can happen. Thus, it is important for you to identify any miscalculations before your client sits at the closing table to sign.