What Should I Expect at Settlement?

Settlements (or the real estate closing) can be complex, but you will feel more prepared and confident if you have some idea of what to expect.  Most individuals find peace of mind by working directly with a real estateattorney, since such an individual can closely analyze all the details in your documents.  In New York, every seller and buyer will hire a real estate attorney so don’t make the mistake of trying to take on the task of representing yourself at the time of settlement.

The time is takes to complete settlement can vary.  For refinances, you can expect to put aside between 30 minutes and one hour, with purchases typically taking between one-two hours.  The settlement will usually be attended by the purchaser, the seller, the real estate agent, and the real estate attorney (s).  

Settlement can be very exciting whether you are the purchaser or the seller, but you need to be as prepared as possible in order for it to go smoothly.  If you are the purchaser, you can expect to pay title insurance costs, which are set rates put in place by New York.  The rates will depend on the amount of the property and the amount of the loan in question

Every settlement is unique, but your attorney can give you a good idea of what you need to bring to closing.  You can discuss with your real estate agent or lender the amount of money you should have with you on the day of settlement.  While this is different in each case, you can usually get what is known as a “good faith estimate” to prepare.  The funds at settlement must be guaranteed, meaning a money order, certified check, bank check, or cashier’s check.  Prior to the actual settlement, you will get an exact number about the correct funds to bring to the closing.