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How long it takes to close on the purchase of your home

The homebuying process can be an eye-opening experience for the first-time homeowner. Once they've been pre-approved for a loan and put in an offer, the buying process can seem as if it comes to a standstill from the perspective of the eager buyer. The back-and-forth communication that's so frequent during the earlier stages are much less so until your lender or attorney's office reaches out to you to schedule the closing.

In case you're wondering what happens between the offer approval and closing, it's during this time that your lender is underwriting your mortgage. While you may have been previously pre-approved for a home loan, it's only once you actually find a home and put an offer on it that your lender dedicates even more time in scrutinizing your financial records.

If your finances, job and life situation have remained relatively the same as when you first received the pre-approval for the loan, then your loan could be processed within as little as 30 to 45 days. However, if circumstances have changed, it's possible that your lender will request additional documentation and need time to analyze it. This might make the process take a little bit longer.

Documents requested may include your tax return, pay stubs and bank statements. Your credit score may even be rerun again.The goal of the lender in doing this is not to cause you stress and aggravation, but instead to make them feel comfortable in knowing that you will be able to repay the loan.

Although initially frustrating, this delay may come as a welcome surprise, especially considering the next step that comes in the closing process. It involves you receiving a call from either the lender or attorney advising you of how much money to bring to the closing to complete the purchase of your home.

The amount you'll be asked to bring will cover the down payment for the home as well as closing costs. Before heading to the closing, the attorney will either ask for you to wire these funds into his or her account. Or, they may simply ask you to bring a certified check from your bank covering the amount instead.

If you're considering buying a home and you have questions about how the purchase or closing process works, then you may benefit from discussing your concerns with a Melbourne, Florida, real estate attorney.

Source: SFGate, "How long does it take a first time home buyer to close?," accessed Aug. 23, 2017

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