Closing on a home is exciting. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a first-time homebuyer or a retiree who is looking for a warm-weather getaway, it’s a thrill to have a place that you can call your own. However, what was thrilling can quickly turn terrifying if last-minute issues cause the closing process to fall apart. Here are some steps you can take to help ensure your real estate purchase doesn’t falter at the finish line.

Ensure the title is clear

Title issues are notorious for delaying if not entirely imploding the purchase of a home. You will want to ensure that the title to the property is clear. This means there are no liens against the property, and there are no issues surrounding the ownership of the property.

You can help address possible issues with the title ahead of time by requesting a preliminary title report. Review the report to ensure there aren’t any signs of trouble.

Purchasing title insurance can provide you with some level of protection. However, you can only make a title insurance claim after you’ve closed on the property. Title insurance claims can be complex and take a long time to resolve. It’s best to avoid potential headaches altogether by ensuring the title to your property is free and clear.

Review the closing documents for any errors

The number of documents you have to sign at closing is substantial. If you took the time to read these documents during the closing, you’d be there all week. However, you can request the closing documents in advance. This will give you time to review and correct any errors before you’re locked in.

Document review can be tedious. However, few things are more tedious than trying to resolve issues after a document has been signed.

Address any issues you spot during a final walkthrough

You should ask for a final walkthrough of the home before your closing date. It’s possible that some fixtures you assumed would be included in the sale were taken by the homeowner. Maybe you’ll notice some damage to the wall that you hadn’t seen before. Should a problem arise, your agent can work with the seller’s agent on a resolution. No one wants an unpleasant surprise on moving day.

Be prepared

Thorough preparation can address many of the problems that arise during the closing process. You can save yourself significant time and stress by correcting issues before signing any paperwork. Having a skilled real estate law professional on your side can help ensure a smooth closing process.