6 Tips for Buyers to Avoid Closing Delays

Once you have found the home that you want, you have made an offer and have had a satisfactory home inspection, then you need to focus on finishing up all paperwork and work towards getting to your closing date. In most cases your closing date will be met, however, there are some cases where things can get delayed. In fact, the National Association of Realtors has reported that 32% of buyers face delays at closing. Here are 6 tips to pay attention to so that you can avoid delays with your deal.

Downpayment and closing costs

Most everyone is well aware these days that you need to have a downpayment when you buy a home. Having 20% down is great as you can avoid paying PMI, but many people are getting away with 5 or 10% too. However, closing costs are a whole other thing. These are all of your prepaid expenses and associated loan costs. The best thing to do is to consult with your mortgage broker to get a good idea of what you need to have on hand for funds. 


Loan snags are a common delay for closings. Even if this is your second home and even if you have the same job as when you bought your first home, you still need to get pre-approved. Rates change, your credit can change and the only way you can safely enter contract is if a mortgage agent checks everything out and provides you with a pre-approval letter.

Divorce decree

Yes. If you have gotten a divorce, you will need to have the supporting paperwork to show it along with any child support or alimony. All of this plays a role in your financial status. 

Mortgage application

First, you should get pre-approved. Second, once you have made your offer on a home then you need to proceed with the mortgage application immediately. The average application takes 30 days, but can take longer during busier markets. Begin this as soon as possible so you have ample time for processing. 

Home appraisals

Another common issue is the home appraisal. Sometimes the home gets listed for more than it will appraise for which is troublesome for financing. According to the National Association of Realtors, this accounts for 20% of closing delays. When you are submitting your offer, check the local and recent comps with your agent and make sure the price is aligned with the market. 


Sometimes there are delays but for good reason. Perhaps at the inspection some damage was discovered and the seller is going to remedy it and needs more time. While this can be disappointing, it will be less of a headache down the road and well worth pushing the closing date out a bit. It is best to have everything the way you want it before you take possession.