If you can even believe it, my Montage condo clients actually signed the papers for their condo closing yesterday. What a wild ride it’s been. We heard Thursday night that the paperwork on their loan had been completed and that if they could manage to sign the documents by Friday, they would be eligible for another special incentive of 1% of purchase price toward closing costs paid for by Montecito Properties. Basically, to facilitate this closing I spent most of Friday on the phone chasing a paper trail of emailed loan docs and begging for an appointment for my clients. It finally worked out, though, and they went in to sign at 2:15pm. I think it was a case of a squeaky wheel. Once the title company realized that it was either, find time to fit them in today, or, send an escrow agent and a courier to Tucson Saturday morning, they magically found a previously undiscovered time slot. Plus I think they just wanted me to stop calling every 10 minutes.
Anyway, I had the opportunity to put into practice some knowledge I’d recently garnered on a ‘lesson learned’ basis. While they were signing, I couldn’t actually be at the appointment due to a previous commitment, but I had reviewed the Settlement Statement to make sure everything the title company had put together looked correct. So before my clients went in to sign, I told them to make sure they understood everything they were signing, and that everything matched what they had been previously told. If they didn’t understand something or something didn’t match, I told them NOT TO SIGN, but to call me. About half an hour later I got a call about the mortgage paperwork. The monthly payment amount was significantly higher than what they were told it would be. I advised them to again, NOT SIGN ANYTHING, until they had a reasonable and clear explanation of why this was from their Loan Officer. It turned out to be an error in paperwork that took a few hours to correct and resubmit, but it was very much worth it to them.
This lesson took me a bit to get, but I’ve got it now. If anything is wrong or even seems wrong in the paperwork, it is much easier to correct before the papers have been sign and the deed has recorded. If you assume people have done their job correctly or that you can fix it later, you may be in store for several weeks of work, extra fees and fingers of blame pointed, instead of a few hours of waiting in the title office.