Buying a home is an exciting and exhilarating time, but between the time your offer was accepted, and when you actually have the keys in hand and finally step into your new home, it can be stressful. The escrow period, also known as the closing, can take the most easygoing home buyer to the brink of insanity. But, after you’ve negotiated your best price and come to an agreement, there are ways to make the escrow process less anxiety-provoking. Here are some tips from top real estate agents to help you get through the escrow process without losing your cool.
Trusting your real estate agent to walk you through the entire process is key to a smoothly closing escrow. Rely them to do their job, but don’t be afraid to express any anxieties, and lean on them during negotiations and inspections. They are the experts, so ask questions and ask for advice, but try not to second guess their guidance or recommendations.
Retain as much flexibility as possible during the closing process and focus on the big picture, rather than petty details. Ask for credits and repairs as needed, but do not dig your heels in about minor fixer projects. In the bigger picture, a couple thousand dollars might not be a deal breaker.
When opening escrow, ask your agent to give you an overview of the expected timeline from beginning to end. Knowing what to expect, and when, as well as seeing milestones hit goes a long way in reducing anxiety. Ask to be notified when important milestones are met.
Chaos rarely inspires confidence. Stay on top of all paperwork and make sure you sign and return everything to your lender promptly to eliminate delays. The lender and escrow company want the sale to close in a timely fashion, too, so don’t slow them down by being disorganized or failing to return important documentation such as income tax information or bank statements.
No home is perfect, so be prepared for inspections that bring daunting news. Ask to be present when the inspections are performed. The more information you have about your prospective home, the better you will be prepared to negotiate for repairs before they surprise you in the future.
While you might have it penciled in on your calendar, it’s common for closing dates to change. Instead if thinking of your closing date as set in stone, think of it as a flexible target. Do not book movers until the last minute, so you won’t be stressed when your belongings are all packed in a truck and the escrow date is set forward a day or two.
Don’t forget to breathe! Take a run, meditate, or do yoga. Take the time to relax before the big move.