Apr 12, 2018

Why You Can't Buy a House on the Weekend

Realtors work weekends. It’s just part of the business. The real estate industry operates seven days a week, with agents showing homes and submitting contracts any day of the week. To be successful, there isn’t an easy way around it. So why aren’t title companies open on weekends as well?

After all, the title industry revolves around real estate agent and the business they bring the title companies. The short answer is that we like to have our weekends off. And federal holidays too. But that flippant response probably wouldn’t sit well with the hardworking agents who bring us business – and whose business keeps us alive.

Truthfully, there are several really valid explanations for why title companies are closed on weekends. To begin with, financial institutions, like mortgage companies, are closed on weekends. Therefore, they can’t fund a transaction. More importantly, they aren’t available to answer financing questions. Often buyers have last minute queries about their home loan. Their lender – not their Realtor or the title company – needs to be the one to answer them. They may want clarification on how their insurance or taxes are being escrowed. Or perhaps they have an issue with their appraisal costs or loans fees.

Last minute questions are common and are handled easiest during weekday business hours. Other important institutions are also closed on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. Taxing authorities and court house recording departments are typically closed on weekends. Other real estate related businesses, like home warranty companies and insurance firms, may have claims representatives available on weekends, but their sales and new policy departments are likely not available to take requests.

Occasionally an escrow officer is willing to sign paperwork with a buyer or seller on a weekend and then arrange for funding and recording of paperwork on the next business day. However, some title companies consider it a risk they aren’t willing to take. When it comes to the real estate closing, there are too many moving parts and participants who may need to be contacted on closing day.

Most contracts call for possession of the property to convey to the buyer at closing and funding. Funding is the important word here. It means that until the full funds for the purchase have been received and confirmed by the title company, the buyer does not take possession of the property. No keys and no moving in until the business deal is really done. And that kind of business is only really done during weekday business hours.
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