At the end of the mortgage loan process is the closing, where all the loan documents are signed, typically at a title company or attorney’s office. I like to attend as many of my closings as I can, and not just because most title companies have coffee and cookies in the lobbies. Most closings are fairly straightforward. It is at an office I’m familiar with, the closer is knowledgeable and friendly and my clients are happy they are buying a new home or refinancing to save money. It is a good time to see everyone after most of our work has been done over phone and email.
The exceptions are more memorable. Once I showed up for a 10 am closing where the buyers and the seller, a small builder, each had an attorney and they were all yelling at each other. After a while I went to eat lunch, when I returned they were still yelling at each other so I went back to my office. At 4:55 they sent over the signed closing documents, I called the title officer to confirm we were ready to fund the loan and I could hear them all still yelling at each other in the background.
One investor I was working with was using the proceeds from selling a property as the down payment for the property I was financing. The sale of his property was delayed which delayed our closing by about a week. This upset the seller greatly, which is understandable but sometimes these things happen and the fault wasn’t with me or the buyer. This didn’t stop her from calling to threaten the buyer and me if the closing didn’t happen on time. When the buyer and I arrived at closing seated at the table was the seller and three large, scruffy guys she identified as her sons. They didn’t say a word through the whole closing and fortunately didn’t follow us to the parking lot.
At closing everyone is signing legal documents and the title officer does have to make sure everything happens correctly. I wasn’t present to witness this, but one of our closings was finishing a divorce and the now ex-husband had to come in to sign over his part of the house and receive his proceeds. The first thing he told the title officer was, “I had to have three drinks to get myself in here today.” Since legal documents can’t be signed while impaired, she rescheduled him to come in first thing in the morning. I had another buyer who was ready to celebrate the purchase of her first home with a bottle of champagne, at 9:00 am. The title officer let her know that would be OK, after everything was signed so the cork wasn’t popped for another 30 minutes or so.
I’ll keep going to closings, where hopefully there won’t be any drama bigger than a coffee spill.
Adam Stephens / Residential Mortgage Loan Originator / NMLS#216606