Home Buyers: What happens at a home closing?

what happens at a home closing


When it comes time close on your new home, it’s called the act of sale. But what happens at a house closing? Does confetti shoot out of the sky? (MAN, DO WE WISH!) Does money rain down to pay for the house? There are many questions, and no one ever tells you! To be clear, though, this is for the New Orleans metro area only. We do not guarantee how other states, or even the rest of Louisiana, operate. 



Document signing

There are LOADS of documents that need to be signed. Purchasing a home through a lender means putting the house up as collateral for the loan. (If you don’t pay your mortgage, the bank can repossess the house.) You will sign mortgage documents with this information. There is other info in these mortgage documents, too – make sure you go through all of this with your lender BEFORE the act of sale. 

When we are sitting at the closing table, this is not the time to read line by line your mortgage documents. You will be there for hours, and none of the terms can be changed. 

You will also sign what is known as the “cash sale.” This document hands the property from the seller’s hands into yours! 

There will also be plenty of other forms to put your John Hancock on. There will be an amortization schedule and escrow info too. The title attorney will go through ALL of these papers with you so you know what you’re signing off on. 



Money will be exchanged.

Your closing date is when your down payment and closing costs are due. Personal checks are not accepted over the amount of $2500. Wiring the money or getting a cashier’s check ahead of time will be crucial. 

The title company will give you the amount you owe that day. If you have a great lender, they will have likely informed you of the amount owed as well! 





The act of sale date is also when you get the house keys! In Louisiana, this is when you take possession of the house, and it’s all yours! (for better or for worse!)

Moving items into the house beforehand is not possible. You will need to wait until after all the paperwork is signed and you have been given keys to the home. (Side note: always change the locks after you purchase the house!)




How long does the closing take? 

While this depends on whether people are late or if it’s a cash deal, we would allot an hour and a half. Cash transactions are usually 30 minutes at most. 




Usually, the seller is at the closing table with you. This is the perfect time to ask the home seller about any house quirks, when trash is picked up, etc. Ask all the questions you want! 

The seller is not always at the act of sale, but most of the time, they are there! 



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