December 10, 2018
The Documents You Should Hold On to After Closing
Even though the law requires closing companies to retain a copy of all the documents produced for closing, it’s a good idea to hold on to a number of them yourself. One never knows what may happen in the future—as we are well aware in the title curative industry—and the best way to deal with a situation is to have already prepared for its possible eventuality.
Of course, the pages of documents a buyer is going to encounter during the property-purchase process can number in the hundreds. So it’s wise to know just which of these will be most important to keep a copy of.
- Your buyer’s agent agreement with the brokerage you’ve chosen to represent you in the transaction is a contract which describes the agent’s legal duties and responsibilities to you. Should any issues arise after closing that were or should have been dependent on these duties, it’s important you know what they were.
- The real estate purchase agreement, on the other hand, is the contract detailing the rights and duties of both seller and purchaser to a home. If the provisions in it are not followed to the letter, it can spell trouble in the form of a potential law suit. You want to be sure you’re doing everything you are supposed to, and to be able to hold the other party to the same standard—and to be able to prove afterward what exactly those provisions were.
- In addition to the initial purchase agreement, be sure to hold on to any riders, addenda, or amendments that were made afterward to the agreement, for the same reasons—especially since they are likely to have materially altered the initial contract. Should any repairs agreed on after the inspection be faulty, these can be particularly useful.
- The sellers of a property are required to produce disclosure forms detailing any problems with the home, whether in past or present, that might be material to its value. Keeping these forms give you a leg to stand on in a law suit should any such issues crop up after you’ve taken possession of the home and legally-required disclosures were not made.
- Your inspection report can be useful for determining what sorts of repairs might need to be done to the property while it’s in your possession in order to lower the likelihood of decreasing your property’s value.
- The closing disclosure (CD) that your mortgage company supplies prior to closing details the loan type, loan term, closing costs, interest rate, and other financial elements of the note into which you will enter. You may need to refer to it in the future—not least of all when filing taxes, if you want to get that mortgage points deduction.
- The deed you receive after closing is the legal instrument conveying title—ownership of the property—to you. The only way to prove legal ownership of a property is to produce the deed. In many cases it is sent to you alone. Mortgage companies and title companies are not required to keep a copy of it. Even if you retain none of the other forms on this list, you must be sure to hold on to this one.
- We at Topouzis & Associates, P.C. provide title insurance in addition to our title curative services, and you will want to hold on to a copy of the title insurance policy. It provides peace of mind in the face of potential liens, fraud in the past that might affect your future ownership, and other hidden issues with title that somehow manage to creep out of the past. Should someone else try to claim ownership over your duly-purchased property, you’ll be glad you kept a copy.
An experienced closing firm like Topouzis & Associates, P.C. is one you can count on to perform a thorough title search on any property, whether in Cranston, Rhode Island; Boca Raton, Florida; or Cambridge, Massachusetts, and will provide that title insurance policy. Whether you’re a lender, realtor, or prospective home buyer, feel free to contact us.