As an investor, or real estate agent, closing real estate deals are just not 1-2-3. There are many steps involved, and things going on behind the scenes. So after you have completed all the hard work of negotiating a real estate deal, now you have the work of closing that deal. For an investor that is just starting out, they may mistakenly think that the work is going to be done by the realtor, the title company and the mortgage broker / banker. While in theory this is true, in actuality, long delays and lost deals occur because the buyer does not get involved. And if you are serious about building a profitable real estate business, you are going to have to take an active role in closing the deal. Here is my typical approach:
Do as much as you can yourself (or have your secretary, etc do it).
You see, I have already been through all the waiting around for something to get done, when you can easily do it yourself and save tons of time and stress. Think about it this way: the realtor, the mortgage broker, and the title company all want to get paid, but all want to do as little work as possible to get paid. So if they can point the finger at someone else, they will. I know this is a very negative light be shed on these professionals, but the bottom line for the most part is, it’s true. I can’t begin to explain how infuriating it is to call up the mortgage broker, ask about the appraisal, and get answer like “Well we called them two weeks ago, but still nothing yet.” What a bunch of BOLOGNA. How about checking up on them? Anyways, without too much ranting, let me give you some specific things you can do to speed up the closing process.
1. Hire the Surveyor and Appraiser Yourself
Most mortgage brokers and bankers will not have a problem with this. Just make sure they give you an approved list of surveyors and appraisers before you hire one. You need to make sure the bank / mortgage company is going to accept their submission. Once you have the list, go shopping, and hire the company you like best. I usually go for cheapest, but then again, the properties I have bought are all in platted areas, and I already know what they are worth. So really, the opinions of the surveyor and appraiser are meaningless to me. But they matter to the mortgage company. Now, if you are buying land that needs a “real” survey, then credentials etc. become important.
2. Communicate with the Title Company Often
Maybe not everyday, but make it a point 2-3 times per week to check in with the title company, see what they have received, what they are still missing, etc. The title company facilitates the entire deal, and if they are missing information, you won’t close, plain and simple. So make sure you know what things are outstanding with them through the process. Again, most realtors are not going to be this prudent, and therefore you could be delayed substantially due to a missing piece of information, that you become aware of weeks after it was known.
3. Communicate with All the Other Professionals Involved
As a minimum, you want to check in once a week with your realtor, mortgage broker / banker, and any others that may be involved. Just keep up with them, as they are busy, and may not get details to you in a timely manner. It just the way people are, they already have the deal inked, and they want to do as little work as possible to get their check.
4. Make Sure You Get Detailed Instructions Before Going to a Closing
This seems like a no brainer, but just make sure you communicate with the title company on the day you close. They will let you know the exact amount the cashier’s check should be made out for, along with any other certifications, letters, etc. that you need to have to close the deal. Make sure you set aside plenty of time to review the documents before you sign. This could really save your neck.
So there you have it, go close that deal! If you have any questions, just leave them at the bottom for me. I’ll answer them ASAP!