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How Does LendingTree Get Paid?

LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.

How Long Does It Take to Close on a House?

Updated on:
Content was accurate at the time of publication.

It can take more than 40 days to close on a house, depending on various factors, including your overall financial situation and whether you’re paying with cash or financing with a mortgage. Though the closing process is exciting — it means you’re getting closer to homeownership — it can also be overwhelming. Having a clear understanding of the timeline can help you reduce stress and make it to the closing table with confidence.

The time it takes to close on a house depends on your payment method (cash or mortgage) and loan type. Paying with cash usually expedites the closing process since it eliminates the need for mortgage approval and related paperwork.

The table below breaks down the average closing timelines for different mortgage loan types — conventional loans, FHA loans and VA loans.

Loan typeTimeline
Conventional42 days
FHA43 days
VA40 to 50 days

As you can see, the timelines are similar across the three loan types. To speed up the closing process, maintain open communication with your real estate agent, lender and other parties involved in the transaction. It’s important to respond promptly to requests for additional information to minimize closing delays.

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Closing on a house takes time because there are several important steps involved, which can each take anywhere from one day to several weeks.

  1. Mortgage loan application: One of the first steps in the closing process is to fill out a mortgage application if you are taking out a loan. You’ll need to provide your Social Security number, address, employment information and details about the home you want to purchase.
  2. Purchase agreement: A purchase agreement outlines the terms and conditions of a real estate deal and is typically signed once the buyer and seller agree on a purchase price.
  3. Closing disclosure: Lenders must provide a closing disclosure, which contains a breakdown of your loan terms and closing costs, three business days before your closing date. It’s a good idea to compare the information in your disclosure with your loan estimate and ask questions if you notice discrepancies.
  4. Home inspection: An inspection is crucial to help identify issues with the property. If the inspection uncovers something wrong with the home, you can negotiate repairs with the seller.
  5. Home appraisal: An appraisal determines the home’s value based on its location, square footage and overall condition. Lenders typically require a home appraisal to ensure they don’t lend more money than the home is worth.
  6. Underwriting: Whether purchasing a home or refinancing, you’ll need to go through an underwriting process to confirm your eligibility for a loan. The timeline for underwriting depends on the lender’s processes and the complexity of your financial situation.
  7. Title search: A real estate lawyer typically conducts a title search during the closing process to confirm there are no liens, unpaid property taxes or legal disputes tied to the home.
  8. Approval to close: Once you receive approval to close — you’re almost at the finish line. You’ll want to do a final walk-through before closing to confirm everything is as expected and that the seller completed any necessary repairs.

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Review and sign closing documents

Closing day involves a lot of paperwork and signatures. It’s important to carefully review the documents and ask any questions you have before signing. Closing documents may include:

Closing disclosure
Mortgage or deed of trust
Escrow statement
Mortgage note
Title insurance
Right to cancel (if refinancing)

Pay closing costs

Closing costs are expenses that must be paid to complete a real estate transaction. You’ll typically need to pay closing costs to your title company or closing agent with a certified check or wire transfer — personal checks are usually not accepted. Closing costs may include:

Down payment
Loan origination and application fees
Credit report fees
Prepaid taxes
Mortgage points
Appraisal fees
Title insurance
Homeowners insurance
Home inspection
Realtor commissions
Real estate lawyer fees

Receive your keys

Once you’ve signed the closing documents and paid the closing costs, you’ll usually receive your keys the same day. Congratulations — you’re officially a homeowner!

  • Errors on your loan application: It’s important to fill out your mortgage application thoroughly and accurately — even something as simple as a typo can potentially delay the closing process. If you notice an error on your application, inform your lender immediately.
  • Title issues: Problems with the home’s title, such as unpaid property taxes, liens or judgments, must be resolved before the property can be transferred into your name.
  • Changes to your credit score: To minimize the risk of closing delays, avoid activities that could lower your credit score, such as missing payments, opening new credit accounts or financing major purchases.
  • Employment verification: Lenders may verify your employment multiple times during the closing process to confirm your eligibility for a mortgage. If the lender can’t confirm your employment status, you could face closing delays.
  • Repairs: If the home inspection uncovers structural defects, infestations or other problems with the home, the closing process may be put on hold until these issues are addressed.
  • Appraisal issues: If the home’s appraised value is lower than the purchase price, you may need to put down more money or negotiate a lower price to make up the difference before closing.
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You may be able to speed up the closing process by responding promptly to lender requests, filling out your paperwork accurately and scheduling the home inspection and appraisal in advance (it can take time to get appointments). Getting a mortgage preapproval may also help expedite the closing process.

If you’re unable to close by the closing date, the purchase agreement may lapse, and you’ll technically be in breach of contract. The seller may agree to extend the closing date to allow for the completion of any pending tasks, but additional fees may apply.

Data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) show that 5% of purchase contracts over the previous three months were terminated before closing, according to an NAR survey from March 2024, the most recent report available. You can’t control all of the reasons a closing may fall through, but you can reduce the risks by avoiding big changes to your financial or employment situation.

It can take as little as seven to 10 days to close on a house if you’re using cash. Paying with cash allows you to skip certain steps in the closing process, including the loan application and underwriting. However, you’ll still want to get a home inspection to confirm the property is in good shape.

It generally takes about six weeks to complete a mortgage refinance, though it varies by loan type. You may be able to shorten your closing time if you have enough home equity to qualify for an appraisal waiver.

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