One of the most exciting dates for New Jersey homebuyers is closing day. Early in the homebuying process, the buyers and sellers will agree on a closing date, typically about a month after signing the purchase agreement contract. This leaves time for the lender to process the mortgage application, for the completion of a title search and for the buyer to schedule various inspections. For first-time purchasers of residential real estate, it may be helpful to know what to expect on closing day.

Closing on a house means taking the final step to homeownership. The buyers and sellers have completed negotiations, financing is secured and both sides are satisfied with the agreement. The buyers may have worked closely with other professionals, like an attorney and a home inspector, and they have taken a final walkthrough to ensure the property is in the condition to which the seller agreed.

If everything has gone well between the signing of the purchase agreement and closing day, both parties will sign many documents to transfer the title to the new owners. The buyers will also sign mortgage notes and turn over a certified or cashier’s check for the closing costs. The seller will hand the keys to the new owners. The closing typically takes place in a private office, such as at a law firm, and may last an hour or longer.

This all sounds smooth and simple. However, there are many things that could go wrong during the long weeks before closing. This is why many in New Jersey taking the leap into residential real estate find it helpful to have a skilled attorney by their sides throughout the process.