With the historically low interest rates we have seen in the past year, many people are taking advantage of the opportunity to refinance their home mortgages at a lower rate to save money. There are plenty of lenders out there who can advise you on the best loan for your situation, that is not my job. However, when the time comes to close and sign your documents, you will most likely meet with a notary signing agent. Your lender or escrow office may ask if you prefer an in-office appointment or to have a mobile notary meet you at your residence.

Prior to your closing appointment, you can expect to be contacted by your notary to confirm the time and location. You will be asked to bring a valid photo ID, and if funds are due from you at closing you may be asked to provide a check or be prepared to wire funds to the Title company. You should receive your final closing disclosure from your lender 3 days prior to your signing appointment. It is especially important that you review it for accuracy and address any questions to your loan officer prior to the signing appointment. If the terms are not what you are expecting, this is the time to have them corrected or at least explained by your lender.

Upon arrival, your notary will verify your ID and explain the process; he/she is only authorized to provide a brief description of the documents and ensure that they are executed correctly, they are not permitted to advise you on how to complete any documents or the legal implications of such. If questions arise specific to your loan, the notary will direct you to the relevant content within the documents or advise you to contact the lender or Title company for answers. As you progress through the package some documents will need to be notarized, when you sign those documents your notary will sign and stamp the notarial certificate in your presence per state requirements.

Most refinance signings proceed smoothly and are completed within 30-45 minutes. An average number of pages is typically between 100-150 but could be more or less depending on the lender and Title company. Usually, you will be provided an unsigned copy of the loan package from the notary upon completion of the signing unless the lender is providing it electronically.

With a knowledgeable and efficient signing agent, your closing appointment should be a simple and positive experience.