As your title closer will tell you at the closing table, it is imperative that you go to the county or township and file your homestead excemption on your property for tax purposes. This is a simple, free process.You have 45 days (in Michigan) to do this after your closing. Otherwise, you will be charged a $5/day late fee up to $200. Your closer will have given you a Homestead Status sheet (plus a copy.) You basically show up at the county/township assessor office and bring along your documents that you were given by the title closer. Ask the clerk to date stamp the copy and give it back to you. Keep it in a safe place. This is to ensure that your property is homestead correctly. Its that easy. If you dont homestead your property by April 1, your property taxes could increase significantly (approximately 40%). It is best to homestead your property as soon as you move into your new home, as forgetting and trying to undo the forgetfulness isnt easy and its costly.
YOUR FIRST MORTGAGE PAYMENT
If you do not receive your payment booklet by the time your first payment is due.....use the coupons that were handed to you at close! You don't want to miss your first payment or be late and be charged for it! More often than not, your mortgage loan will be sold from the company that you received your mortgage from, to a secondary market investor. This is important to you as you will need to pay your monthly mortgage payment to whoever is currently servicing or owns your mortgage. Do not be alarmed when you get a letter after closing stating that ABC Mortgage has sold your loan and to start making payments to XYZ Mortgage. You will also get a letter from XYZ Mortgage, letting you know how to contact them and where to send your payments. This will probably happen a number of times throughout the life of the loan. Lately, we have seen loans being sold to different companies a number of times before the first payment is even made. Just make sure that you are contacted by the company that HAD your mortgage and verify that it was sold before you start sending mortgage payments to unconfirmed places.
MAIL AND UTITLIES
Chances are you have already arranged for utility services on your new home; most people will have them lined up for the day of or the day after closing. You can contact the United States Postal Service to get your mailing address switched, and dont forget to contact each of your individual banks, employers, creditors, subscriptions and other service providers.
IMPORTANT TITLE INSURANCE INFORMATION
When you purchase your home, you will be put on the title of the property. Title shows who owes the home. Please be aware that the recording process is just that, a process. it doesnt happen overnight. It can take months for your name to show up in title to your property. If you are purchasing a bank owned property it will take even longer.
FINAL HUD STATEMENT
This document is important when you are doing your taxes for year end of the year you purchased your home. There are alllowable deductions on this form. So, be sure to hand them over to your tax preparer Your closer will have given you a copy of these documents for your records.
If you mortgaged your property, an appraisal was ordered and required by your lender. You should have a copy of it for your records, you paid for it! If you did not receive a copy from your loan officer, ask them to send a copy to you. Keep this document with your other housing closing records. It may come in handy if you decide to sell your home.
HOME OWNERS INSURANCE
You are settled in and you are now considering shopping around a bit more for your homeowner insurance. First off, don't make a switch until you talk to your lender. You need to be sure that there is no lapse in your homeowner policy. Otherwise, if the bank receives a notice that you cancelled one policy before they receive a notice that you have a new insurance carrier, they will give you insurance at a very heavy cost to youthe payments will go into your house payment! So it is very important that transferring home owner insurance is seemless.
Many first time home-buyers have questions after closing. Every transaction is different, so dont be afraid to call your realtor or loan officer or title company for guidance.