Closing is the real estate transaction finish line that both buyers and sellers strive hard to cross as soon as possible. It is when dotted lines are signed, money and ownership change hands, and both parties get what they want. The difficulty, though, lies in the fact that there is any number of uncertainties and obstacles along the way, so you just can’t count your closing chickens till they actually hatch. But what are some of the biggest and most common closing obstacles? To answer that question, here are 5 things that will delay the closing when buying or selling real estate in Santa Cruz.
1. Financing Problems
Most people have to get a mortgage loan in order to buy real estate – very few of us have enough money on hand to make a cash purchase. Understandably, then, financing problems are often at the top of the list of things that will delay the closing in buying/selling real estate in Santa Cruz.
Often, buyers think they have their financing locked in after talking to a lender, but things then go south after the lender examines their financial situation more closely. Here are some of the common financing problems that delay the closing:
- Failure to get or inability to get pre-approved
- Failure to provide 100% accurate information to the lender
- Job loss or job change
- Inflation of debt-to-income ration
- A drop in credit score
- Opening new lines of credit
- Making major purchases
2. Title Issues
Title issues are also right up there vying for the number-one spot on the list of things that will delay the closing when buying or selling real estate in Santa Cruz. Remember, lenders will require that a title search be performed before lending money in order to ensure that there are no other parties who have some claim on the property. The purpose of the title search is to protect the lender and buyer against cases in which there are debts or liens attached to the property and/or entities other than the seller can claim legal ownership.
Here’s what industry pros say about title issues: “Title report issues are the most common reason for closing delays. Some sellers are completely unaware that there were previous liens on their property and buyers face the frustration of waiting out these sometimes complicated resolutions. Title release tracking and title curative services are the most effective ways to safeguard against these costly delays.”
To find out more about this common closing delay – and what to do about it – contact a Santa Cruz agent at 831-588-2334.
3. Low Appraisal Value
Lenders will require an appraisal to ensure the real estate is at least valued at what they intend to lend. And if the appraisal is done late in the game or another appraisal values the property at a lower figure after the initial one, this too can delay the closing.
“In theory, you would know if there were issues with the home’s appraisal before the closing date was fast approaching. However, the theory isn’t the same as real life when it comes to buying and selling homes. Issues with appraisals can arise when a home doesn’t appraise at or above the sale price, and requirements are not clearly communicated to the parties. Either a bank may ask for repairs before closing or another appraisal needs to be ordered, thus delaying the proceedings.”
4. Instrument Survey Problems
An often overlooked thing that will delay the closing in buying/selling real estate in Santa Cruz is a problem with the instrument survey. Even homes that have been bought and sold several times before without a hitch can be susceptible to instrument survey issues on further investigation.
“A home of any age,” experts say, “can run into boundary line encroachment disputes with regards to the land the home is situated on. Property lines, walls or fencing may become an issue, and closing can be delayed until all parties can settle discrepancies through signed affidavits.”
5. Inspection Issues
Most buyers will want an inspection clause or contingency in the purchase contract. They will want to have a professional inspection done to make sure the property doesn’t have costly problems or need major repairs. They want to be able to walk away from the deal if the inspection does turn up such problems. And if serious problems are revealed, it can, of course, delay the closing.
That’s why inspections are typically done early in the process. If the inspection finds that repairs are needed, the buyer and seller can hammer out solutions well before closing. But it doesn’t always work that way.
“[D]ue to miscommunications, delays, or simply neglect, some of these repairs may not get done, and this will often come to light during the final inspection. Mortgage lenders won’t stand for this as they aren’t receiving what is on the contract, so expect delays. Also, final inspections can reveal unexpected issues such as broken appliances or plumbing fixtures. These sorts of issues will also cause closing delays.”
Using a Santa Cruz Agent to Avoid Closing Delays
You can see, then, that a lot of pieces have to fall into place for closing to occur on time and without delays. Your best bet to avoid closing delays is to have an experienced Santa Cruz agent in your corner to guide you through the process and to help ensure that all the pieces are in fact in place when needed. So if you truly want to avoid these things that will delay the closing when buying or selling real estate in Santa Cruz, contact us today at 831-588-2334.