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Table of contents
Real Estate Agent Tips for a Timely Closing
Real estate agents want to provide the smoothest possible closing for their customers. Remember, different states have different closing procedures. Prepare accordingly to gain an understanding a head of time, and this will help the closing to go as smoothly as possible.
Make sure the contract and any handwritten documents are easy to read.
Provide an email address, phone numbers and office address, along with a preferred method of communication and the best time to contact. This goes for all parties involved in the transaction, and includes real estate agents, buyer(s), seller(s), attorneys, surveyor, inspector, Homeowner Association or Condo Association, etc. Importantly, buyers should provide a current physical address to receive documents. Also, for sellers, a forwarding address and new contact information must be provided in the case they need to be contacted after the settlement.
Transaction Fees and Commissions
Provide the amount to be listed on the closing documents and the parties paying/receiving these fees.
Provide closing agent with copies of any revisions and/or addendums as soon as possible.
Debts pertinent to the transaction and listed on the closing documents must paid at closing, provide copies to the closing agent at least one week prior to closing. After all parties approve the closing documents, modification may delay the closing.
In addition, provide current marital status of all parties to ensure the accuracy of the deed and determine whether additional parties need to sign closing documents.
Powers of Attorney and Trust Documents
The closing agent and/or the lender must approve all Powers of Attorney (POAs) prior to settlement. Inform the closing agent and lender as soon as possible if you are planning to use a POA. Also, inform both parties if the property is being held or placed into a trust.
Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act of 1980 (FIRPTA)
Tax equal to 15 percent of the amount realized needs either deducted or withheld if the seller is not a United States citizen by the closing agent. Generally, this is based on the amount paid paid for the property. Please advise your customers to review the FIRPTA requirements prior to closing.
Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
All real estate transactions must be reported to the IRS. Sellers will therefore must provide their social security number(s).
If any parties are unable to attend the closing, provide a physical address(es) where the closing documents should be delivered and a contact phone number. Remember, some documents may require the services of a notary.