It's not uncommon for closing dates on real estate purchases to get pushed back again and again, until before you know it, you're closing weeks or months after you had originally planned. While some causes of late closings -- such as the seller going out of town or failing to turn in proper paperwork -- are out of your control, others are not. Follow these four tips to reduce your chances of having your closing date pushed back.
Don't move big sums of money.
When the mortgage company examines your accounts and is in the process of approving your loan, they will keep an eye on any large transfers that are made in or out of your accounts. This could signal to them that you are trying to make it appear as though you have more money than you do, or that there is some sort of other fraudulent activity going on. If they see something suspicious, they'll have to call you up and ask for an explanation -- and this takes time. You can expedite the closing process by avoiding large money transfers until your real estate purchase has closed.
Gather your paperwork beforehand.
Early in the home buying process, make sure you spend time gathering all relevant paperwork, including your tax returns, statements from any other debt you have, W2s, 1099s, and the like. This way, if the mortgage company calls you asking for more information, you can just reach into your pile and find it rather than having to hunt through your home. Prompt replies to the mortgage company's requests and making a few calls beforehand will speed up the closing process.
Don't plan a vacation during the closing process.
When you go out of town, inevitably you will get a call from the mortgage company or your real estate lawyer asking you to come into the office and fill something out. Or, you may get a phone call that you don't reply to for hours because you were busy relaxing on the beach. Put off your vacations until after the closing process so you're easy to get ahold of when needed.
Set up an appointment for the final walk-through well in advance.
Before you can close, you'll need to do a final walk-through of the home. If you wait until the last minute to schedule this with your realtor, he or she may not be able to get to it immediately, and this could set your closing date back. Instead, tentatively schedule an appointment for the walk-through when your offer on the home is accepted. Then, the realtor will have this time set aside in his or her schedule and you'll be sure to get it done in time for your originally planned closing date.