It isn’t all that uncommon for a purchase closing to be delayed due to an issue with the buyer’s mortgage company. Problems with the appraisal, an insurance issue or a buyer that is slow providing all of the required paperwork, just to name a few.

Last Friday, we were scheduled to handle a closing in Philadelphia for a buyer who chose TD Bank as his lender. As we always do, we started contacting the loan closer early in the week in an effort to get the lender’s closing instructions, so that we could prepare the HUD-1 settlement statement and provide our mutual customer with the final amount needed at closing.

After twenty some years and more than 9,000 closings it’s never a good sign when the lender doesn’t return your calls or emails. Finally late on Thursday the email arrived... "it doesn’t look like we’ll be closing on Friday." We were told, along with the buyer, that there was a question as to whether or not flood insurance was going to be required and that it would take a little time to figure it out. A Monday afternoon settlement would be more realistic.  Once again, no real problem at this point because last-minute snafu’s are not all that uncommon.

Here’s where it starts to annoy everyone involved. It’s now Monday and all parties are on stand-by waiting for the call from TD Bank that we’re good to go. When it’s apparent that the closing is not going to happen on Monday, we along with the buyer begin to ask if we’re going on Tuesday. No response! Now it’s Tuesday, and TD Bank's closer sends an email to us and the buyer instructing both of us not to email or call anymore, “we’ll let you know when we’re ready.”

Great customer service, right? Meanwhile the seller is getting nervous that the deal may be falling apart and the buyer, his real estate agent and his title company are completely in the dark because TD Bank said not to bother them.

As I said in a previous post, if you want a bank where you can cash a check on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon, TD Bank might be your answer. When it comes to residential mortgages, avoid them like the plague. Their rates are good, but I can name a dozen local lenders that are just as competitive that will treat you with respect and not put you through the wringer.

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