Your closing day is finally almost here! You are within days of receiving the keys to your new home in your hand. Before you head out the door to go to your closing, though, you should know what you need to bring. The more prepared you are, the easier the process will be and the quicker you can call yourself an official homeowner.

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First, let’s talk about how much time you’ll spend at the closing table. If you’ve never seen a mortgage closing packet, prepare yourself. You may wind up signing more than 300 documents before it’s all said and done. A smooth closing can take around 2 hours. If you have one with a few bumps in the road, you’ll need even more time. Along with that time, you might want to bring a little patience too.

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Now, what physical items should you bring to the closing?

  • Your photo ID – The mortgage closer and loan officer need to verify your identity. They need to be sure beyond a reasonable doubt that no one else is signing the documents for you (that’s mortgage fraud).
  • Paid receipt for homeowner’s insurance – You must have a full year’s worth of homeowner’s insurance paid before you can close on your mortgage. At the closing, you must bring the Declaration’s Page of your homeowner’s insurance that shows your coverage along with a receipt that shows you paid it in full for the full year. You must do this even if you plan to set up an escrow account for your real estate taxes and insurance.
  • Money – You’ll need money to cover your down payment and closing costs. You should know ahead of time how much you need, as your lender must send you the Closing Disclosure before the closing. You must bring the money in the form of a cashier’s check. The closing agent cannot accept cash or a personal check.
  • The purchase contract – It’s a good idea to have a copy of the executed purchase contract with you, especially if any issues come up at the closing. The seller should be in attendance at the closing and can address any issues you have. If you don’t think something that was agreed upon is being handled, you will have the help of your attorney to iron things out.
  • The Closing Disclosure – Bring your copy of the Closing Disclosure with you so that you can make sure the numbers match what you were told before the closing. It’s against the law for the lender to switch anything around at this point, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.

You may also want to ask your loan officer if there is anything else you need to bring to the closing that is specific to your loan. Each lender has their own requirements and each transaction has its own issues that may need to be addressed. Knowing ahead of time what you need can help you be the most prepared for your closing.