The Real Estate market right now is hot, so if you're in the middle of buying or selling a home, or just refinancing an existing mortgage, you may be wondering what to expect next. Once a real estate contract is drawn, one of the next steps is "Closing." While you may not have needed an attorney up until this point, a closing attorney is legally required to finalize the deal. But what does a closing attorney do? Today we'll discuss the 5 primary functions of a closing attorney in Raleigh during a real estate transaction.
1. The Closing Attorney in Raleigh Must Thoroughly Examine the Title
One of the biggest things to come out of a real estate closing (beyond ownership of a new home) is the title for the property. Without a clear title in hand, the property sale becomes complicated. As such, both the buyer and lender want to see a clear title of the property.
Once there is a real estate purchase agreement or a request from the bank (or mortgage broker), your closing attorney in Raleigh will start checking the title of the property in question. The buyer needs to know if there are any restrictions of use, easements, encroachments, or whether the title is marketable and clear for the seller to transfer said property to the buyer.
The closing attorney in Raleigh is also responsible for identifying any existing mortgages currently in place that need to be satisfied in order to transfer the title to the buyer. The lender wants an overview of what liens, judgments and/or mortgages exist prior to closing so it can secure a 1st lien position on the real estate. This title examination process also provides the lender's underwriters with an opportunity to raise any concerns they may have over the status of the title.
The entire title examination process takes time, thus the reason that so many close dates are 30 to 45 days from the tile a contract is written.
2. Obtain Title Insurance
Once the title examination process is complete, your closing attorney in Raleigh prepares their opinion on that title and then offers it to a title company so a title binder can be issued. The title binder is a preliminary step in obtaining title insurance.
Typically, title insurance is an optional step for the buyer at the time of closing if financing is not done through a bank or mortgage broker. However, if the buyer is financing with a bank or mortgage broker, title insurance is a requirement as it insures the buyer on the title with regard to any claims of interests, rights or liens against the property being purchased. The lender requires title insurance because they want absolute assurance that they've secured the 1st lien position on the position.
3. The Closing Attorney in Raleigh is the Primary Coordinator for Closing
While your main point of contact during the real estate process to date has been your realtor, once a real estate contract is in place, the closing attorney takes over all lines of communication in preparation for closing.
Not only does your closing attorney in Raleigh talk with the buyer and seller, but they also will coordinate with your lender, real estate brokers, surveyors, or any merchants and parties that may hold judgments that are attached to the property. They'll also coordinate with the seller's mortgage holder to settle the payoff, the buyer's prospective homeowner's insurance company, the county tax department, home inspectors, contractors, the homeowner's association, the seller's attorney - even adjoining property owners. The closing attorney literally manages all communications on the sale of the property.
Again, this is why it takes 30 to 45 days to close. Your closing attorney in Raleigh is addressing all the things necessary to secure a smooth closing transaction, which often means communicating with multiple parties. In fact, these efforts increase as your closing attorney starts preparing the settlement statement for closing and has to take account with all of these parties on dates and specific dollar amounts for closing purposes.
Are you looking for the right closing attorney in Raleigh? Contact our real estate attorney in Raleigh, NC to schedule a consultation.