Prior to your scheduled closing date, Jim will be busy gathering documents on your behalf. Condo-type purchases entail additional paperwork: Jim will obtain the Condominium 6D Certificate (a notarized document verifying that all condominium fees and any and all special assessments in the condominium association are up to date for the month of the closing), the Condominium Association's Master Insurance Policy Certificate naming you or your mortgage/lien holder, and the Fire Department Smoke/Carbon Monoxide Detector Certificate.

If purchasing a single-family or townhouse in the City of Boston, there is also the Water & Sewer Commission Final Water Reading. Jim will ensure that these and all state-required documents, like the Title V certificate, are provided at the Registry of Deeds.

The week just prior to the closing is when your lender's underwriter actually prepares all the documents, verifies the accuracy of the settlement statement, reviews the deed, and lines up funds for the closing. If this is a cash deal the seller's legal counsel will prepare the closing documents. Either way, you can count on Jim to be in touch regularly throughout the entire transaction in an effort to monitor the process and generally to assure things proceed smoothly and ultimately without incident. Just bear in mind that your mortgage company is ultimately in the driver's seat!

Contact your attorney about a week before closing to schedule the actual closing date, time, and location, in an effort to avoid any problems with your schedule. If you cannot attend the closing, have your attorney prepare a "Power of Attorney" (POA) as well as a wire transfer - which will save you time and aggravation.

If you plan on being at the closing, you will need certified funds - either a cashier's check or wire transfer. The closing usually takes place at your lender's attorney's office or the Registry of Deeds. Plan on spending about 1-2 hours depending upon the amount of paperwork. Don't forget to bring your driver's license or state-issued photo identification/passport and certified funds.

About three (3) days prior to the closing, you will receive a copy of the settlement statement; sadly, lender's attorneys have typically not had this prepared until about 24-48 hours prior to closing before the rules changed toward the end of 2015. The settlement statement documents the transaction in detail and informs you of the total amount due at the closing - obviously necessary so you can order the wire transfer or get the cashier's check. Should you have any questions in regards to the Closing Statement's itemization of fees, call your attorney or Jim.

Once you and your attorney and mortgage company have ironed everything out and you have a firm time, date, and location scheduled, you will need to pass this along to Jim so that he can schedule a timely walk through of your new home prior to the actual closing time.

The seller or Jim will have all the keys for you at the closing - e.g. building, unit, garage, mail box, storage, etc.

Your lender requires that you secure "Home Owner's Insurance" for your new property, in addition to any master insurance policy which is provided by your condominium association. The experiences of most of my clients have shown that it has been advantageous to be insured by the same insurance carrier that covers the condominium association in an effort to avoid any discrepancies in the actual coverage; although it might be cheaper if you go with the company that provides your vehicle insurance... or vice versa. The important thing is to be well covered in the unfortunate event of a loss or damage to the property.

After closing comes... moving; but, you will want to orchestrate that long before closing. Check out Jim's moving tips.