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Florida Real Estate Pre-Closing Checklist

The best way for an attorney to ensure his or her adequate preparation for closing is to maintain a “things to do” checklist and review every item listed.  Below is a list that we use in our practice broken down into different areas, all of which are to be completed prior to the closing of the transaction.

CONDITIONS REGARDING TITLE

A. Real Property


1. Order abstract/ title insurance commitment
2. Examine evidence of title
3. Note title exceptions
4. Obtain copies of title exceptions
5. Send title report to client
6. Notify seller of acceptance or objection to title
7. Obtain curative documents, if necessary, including:

  • Affidavits
  • Deeds
  • Release
  • Subordinations

8. Give final approval/ rejection of title
9. Proceed to closing or demand return/ forfeiture of deposits.

B. Personal  Property


1. Search circuit court records for liens (name search)
2. Review available invoices.
3. Notify seller of the title impairments
4. Obtain curative documents
5. Give final approval/rejection of title
6. Proceed to closing or demand return/forfeiture of deposits.

Conditions Regarding Property

A. Survey

1. Order and obtain survey or update (review contract for services)
2. Compare legal description with contract description and description in evidence of title.
3. Note encroachments, easements, overlaps, access.
4. Check certification and surveyors certificate
5. Notify seller of objections to survey
6. Obtain curative documents/action, including:

  • Court orders
  • Quitclaim deeds
  • Removal of encroachments

7. Give final approval/rejection of survey
8. Proceed to closing or demand return/forfeiture of deposits

B. Inspections

1. Order property inspections (Generally, one inspection company can conduct all of these inspections.)

  • Air conditioning
  • Appliances
  • Electrical systems
  • Elevators
  • Foundation
  • Radon
  • Subsoil
  • Pest infestation
  • Plumbing
  • Mold
  • Lead-based paint
  • Roof
  • Seawall
  • Dock
  • Swimming pool
  • Well
  • Septic tank
  • Other appurtenances
  • Off-site conditions

2. If necessary, order environmental audit
3. Review inspection reports/audits
4. Notify seller of needed repairs or waiver
5. Obtain second and third opinions when necessary
6. Employ agreed-upon contractor of repairs
7. Ensure timely completion of repairs
8. Give final approval/rejection of conditions
9. Proceed to closing or demand of return/forfeiture of deposits.

Other Conditions

A. Financing - Payoffs - Liens    

1. Obtain loan commitment or loan assumption approval
2. Obtain payoff letters stating required mortgage payoff sums for seller.
3. Obtain letters from taxing authorities regarding liens or assessments.
4. Obtain homeowner/ condominium estoppel regarding liens or assessments.
5. Notify seller of ability/ inability to satisfy financing conditions
6. Proceed to closing or demand return/ forfeiture of deposits.

B. Consents

1. Obtain a homeowner/ condominium consent to transfer of property and/or waiver of right of first refusal.
3. Notify seller of consents obtained/ denied
4. Proceed to closing or demand return/ forfeiture of depoists.

C. Homeowners Insurance   

1. Obtain homeowners insurance (including flood insurance, if required, and mold rider).
2. Notify lender of ability/ inability to obtain insurance
3. Proceed to closing or demand return/ forfeiture of deposits.

D. Utilities   

1. Ensure that buyer opens accounts with provider of utilities.
2. Remind buyer to have utilities turned on at specifics time and date when buyer intends to take
Possession of premises. (Utility Holdback on HUD-1 Closing Statement)

 

You May Also Be Interested in These Popular Real Estate Closing Topics (Most requested real estate information by our clients):

 

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Broward County Lawyers representing clients throughout South Florida including the cities of
Hallandale, Hollywood, Aventura, Sunny Isles, Miramar, Pembroke Pines, Weston, Davie,
North Miami Beach and Dania Beach since 1982
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