Fast Closing Tips: 18 Day Escrow Funded - With Thanksgiving in Between!
It's true. I just funded a loan in less than 18 days. Thanksgiving holiday included! Every year when the holidays come around it's critical to figure in the business days we lose. During Thanksgiving week, I always assume I lose two and a half productive days. Companies close early on Wednesday, and are closed on Thursday and Friday. Also important, many people take time off over the holidays, so often a lender is working with a reduced staff. Buyers, Jim and Dan, started their home search in January 2018. They were outbid at least six times. Frustration had set in, and they had put their search on hold. Then, quite by accident, they found their perfect house. The minute they walked in they felt at home. This was "the one"! How did they get their offer accepted this time? TERMS!
Their realtor expertly navigated the logistics with the listing agent, and was able to make a preemptive offer with no contingencies and a fast close! The sellers appreciated the fast close because they were relocating out of state and needed the proceeds to purchase another home. Jim and Dan's offer was accepted the evening of Monday, November 19th. When an offer is accepted in the evening, I've already lost the first day of our escrow period. The closing date was Friday, December 7th, and just to make things more interesting, the buyers were moving in on Saturday, the 8th! There was no wiggle room for delays! Here's how I close a loan FAST: BUYER IS PREPARED Working with the buyer beforehand and knowing the particulars of their financial situation is essential to avoid surprises. There is not even a day to spare with such a short closing. Every buyer - no matter how well qualified - has something unique about their transaction. It might be their down payment source, income source or credit issues. It's imperative to have all the kinks worked out before getting into contract. LENDING RELATIONSHIP For my part, the most important aspect is the team at the lender. My rep, the underwriter, the processor, doc drawer and funder. Everyone needs to be RESPONSIVE. My rep's role is especially crucial - if any part breaks down, she will get it back on track. She is also the person who gets me assigned to the underwriter I want, and requests the rushes I need. This is why I choose lenders that offer competitive rates, and have also built their business model on relationship lending. TEAMWORK Responsiveness of the Realtors and the escrow team is also critical. From providing the executed contract in a timely manner, to quoting escrow and title fees quickly so that required disclosures can be generated, to sending the funding package back to the lender quickly to start the funding review process. It takes a village to close a loan quickly. Once in contract, I switch hats from mortgage/financial adviser to project manager. I personally handle every aspect of the loan processing. I coordinate and communicate with all parties - buyers, realtors, escrow, and the lender. Everyone stays informed and on track. I pride myself on making sure the buyer knows exactly what to expect by providing this easy to understand, comprehensive payment and closing cost breakdown. The buyer receives this from me early in the pre-qualification process, and for every potential house they are considering purchasing. Understanding the "big picture" is imperative to making a good financial decision. Yes, there are required government disclosures - the Loan Estimate and Closing Disclosure. But these are only issued after a buyer is in contract, and although these forms are improved from previous versions, they are still confusing to many buyers. My form gives them exactly what they need to know in an easy to understand format so there are NO SURPRISES at closing.
PREPARATION AND TEAMWORK ARE THE KEYS TO...Happy Homeowners! "As buyers, we were completely unaware of the demands of such a quick close and the impact of the Thanksgiving holiday. That's a true testament to Julie's professionalism and skill! She expertly navigated the bumps in the road, and never left us in doubt on the status of our loan. That freed us to concentrate on the countless other details of buying and selling, and to plan our move into the home we had been searching for - for nearly a year!" - Jim and Dan