Buying a home is filled with anticipation, excitement, and a whirlwind of paperwork and decisions. As you approach the finish line, closing day, staying organized for a seamless transition is crucial. 

That is why we have put together a comprehensive guide on what to do leading up to closing, covering the most essential tasks.

 

1. Secure Homeowners Insurance

Homeowners insurance is a critical component of homeownership. It provides protection for your property and personal belongings, as well as liability coverage. Make sure you choose the best option and ensure a smooth transition by:

      • Shopping Around: Start by researching different insurance providers and obtaining quotes. Compare coverage options, deductibles, and premiums to find the policy that best suits your needs and budget.
      • Notifying Your Lender: Your lender will require proof of homeowners insurance before closing. Provide them with the necessary documentation to satisfy this requirement.
      • Understanding Your Coverage: Review your policy carefully to understand what is covered and any limitations or exclusions. Make any necessary adjustments to guarantee adequate coverage.

 

2. Coordinate Utilities

Providing your new home with essential utilities is crucial for a seamless transition. Here’s what you need to do:

      • Transfer or Set Up Utilities: Contact utility providers for services such as electricity, gas, water, sewage, trash, internet, and cable. Arrange for service transfer or new installations to verify you have utilities on the day you move in.
      • Schedule Service Activation: Schedule utility activation or transfer appointments well in advance. Having these services up and running before your move-in date is a good idea.
      • Verify Service Providers: Confirm the utility providers in your new area, as they may differ from your current location. Make sure you have the correct contact information for setting up services.

 

3. Manage Your Mail

Don’t forget to address your mail during the transition to your new home:

      • Forward Your Mail: Visit your local post office or use the USPS website to set up mail forwarding. This ensures that any mail sent to your previous address will be redirected to your new one.
      • Update Important Contacts: Inform important contacts, such as banks, insurance providers, and government agencies, of your change of address. This will see to it that you receive critical documents and notifications.
      • Notify Subscriptions and Services: Update your address with magazine subscriptions, online shopping accounts, and other services that send mail to your home.

 

4. Finalize the Last Walk-Through

Before closing, you’ll typically have the opportunity to conduct a final walk-through of the property. Here’s what to keep in mind:

      • Schedule the Walk-Through: Coordinate with the seller and your real estate agent to schedule a final walk-through a day or two before closing. This is your chance to establish that the property is in the agreed-upon condition.
      • Check for Repairs: Verify that any repairs or agreed-upon fixes have been completed. If not, address these issues with the seller before closing.
      • Inspect Major Systems: Test major systems and appliances, such as heating, cooling, plumbing, and electrical, to make sure they are in working order.

 

5. Prepare for Closing Costs

You’ll need to review and prepare for various costs and fees in the days leading up to closing.

      • Closing Disclosure: Your lender will provide a closing disclosure at least three days before closing. Review this document carefully to understand the final costs, including the down payment, closing costs, and any prepaid items like property taxes and insurance.
      • Secure Funds: Double-check that you have the necessary funds available for closing. These funds should cover your down payment, closing costs, and any other expenses specified in the Closing Disclosure.  Make sure to contact your closing company to determine how they accept funds and to call your bank to determine if they are able to get the funds to the closing company with no issues.

 

6. Plan Your Move

Moving day is a significant event in any home buyer’s life. To make it as smooth as possible:

      • Hire Movers or Arrange Help: Decide whether you’ll hire professional movers or rely on friends and family to assist with the move. Make arrangements well in advance.
      • Pack Strategically: Start packing your belongings systematically, labeling boxes by room and contents. This will make unpacking in your new home much more manageable.
      • Update Emergency Contacts: Update your emergency contact list with your new address and phone numbers.

 

7. Finalize Home Inspection

While this step typically occurs earlier in the process, it is important to revisit your home inspection report and check that any agreed-upon repairs have been made.

      • Review the Inspection Report: Review the home inspection report to remind yourself of any identified repairs or issues.
      • Request Proof of Repairs: Ask the seller for documentation or proof that the necessary repairs have been completed satisfactorily.

 

8. Prepare for Closing Day

Finally, be prepared for the big day:

      • Confirm Closing Details: Double-check the closing date, time, and location with your real estate agent or attorney.
      • Bring Required Documents: Gather all necessary documents, including identification, your cashier’s check for closing costs, and any paperwork requested by your lender or title company.
      • Ask Questions: Do not hesitate to ask questions or seek clarification on any aspects of the closing process you are unsure about.

 

By following this comprehensive guide, you can rest assured that the transition to your new home is as smooth and stress-free as possible, allowing you to enjoy the excitement of homeownership to the fullest.