Part III: Closing
If you take the time to be prepared, a closing should be simple and run smoothly. A closing is basically the buyer giving the seller their money and the seller giving the buyer the deed. While there is more involved than that, preparing with experienced Fort Lauderdale luxury real estate attorneys will help the closing process run efficiently.
Closing takes place at an attorney’s office, broker’s office, or some other place that can officially record the sale. The closing should be attended by the buyer and seller, their attorneys, and the closing agent. Additionally, the real estate agents, witnesses, and a notary may be present. A party may choose to attend closing without counsel; however, unexpected issues may arise that an attorney would be better equipped to handle.
Both the buyer and seller should bring identification to the closing. The seller provides the deed, bill of sale, closing statement, and affidavits. These documents should be supplied to the buyer prior to closing. The buyer should have their attorney review all closing documents. The contract may include provisions for when objections to closing documents may be made. An attorney can identify issues that the buyer may overlook before the objection period ends.
Generally, title is conveyed by a warranty deed. A warranty deed conveys the seller’s title in the property to the buyer. A warranty deed provides warranties from the seller to the buyer such as seisin, quiet enjoyment, and claims against the title. Other deeds such as a special warranty deed or quitclaim deed are common, but they provide limited, if any, warranties.
Another important closing document not previously discussed in the series is a closing statement. A closing statement summarizes the financial aspects of a real estate transaction. The most common closing statement is the HUD-1. The HUD-1 reflects charges, credits, and expenses for closing. An experienced attorney can help their client understand the HUD-1 and make sure the figures are accurate.
If any details are not completed in time for the closing, the parties may still agree to close. A closing memorandum should be prepared that describes any details to be completed, whom must complete them, and at whose expense. Before leaving a closing, all documents should be checked to ensure that they have been properly executed. Documents need to be signed and dated by the parties, witnesses, and notary.