You can become a closing agent by obtaining a high school diploma and taking training courses in real estate title research, escrow, and sales closings. Alternatively, you can pursue certification as a paralegal with a specialty in real estate transactions. In some instances, it is also helpful to have a title agent license. The position relies on specific knowledge of the closing process and experience, so any activity that will teach you the ins and outs of real estate closings under various circumstances and provides some hands on experience will launch a career in this field.
A closing agent performs administrative work for an escrow company to complete real estate sales. An escrow company is a neutral third party that handles the exchange of the title to the property for the agreed upon sales price so that each party receives the disbursement of the benefit of the transaction at the exact same time. The agent duties include typing commitments, handling offers and payoffs, dealing with insurance and property surveys, and ensuring the title research and exchange are completed properly.
The minimum educational requirement to become a closing agent is a high school diploma. Employers also typically want experience in various aspects of closing real estate transactions. Many will allow the substitution of specific training for experience. There are numerous training courses available for closing agents, and the easiest way to obtain training is by checking the course offerings at local community colleges.
Many community colleges offer complete courses in general real estate sales and specialty courses in certain aspects of the sales process. These courses provide certifications upon completion of a number of classes and will qualify you to take licensing exams. A community college will also typically offer a course of study to become a paralegal with an emphasis on real estate transactions. Availing yourself of any of these resources to add to your resume will help you become a closing agent.
Real estate trade associations also offer training courses and licensing. Employers look for knowledge of pre-closing and closing tasks, familiarity with real estate title searches and insurance, and proficiency with different types of closing software. Obtaining a title agent license will also help you become a closing agent. Escrow companies also work with distressed properties, so any training or familiarity with foreclosures, bank-owned properties, and both public and private housing and mortgage organizations and practices are also good skills to have.
To become a closing agent, you will also have to demonstrate certain soft skills. Agents work closely with buyers and sellers to coordinate and facilitate the sale. Employers want agents that have a strong customer service ethos and substantial organizational skills. While you obtain the education and requisite training for the position, make sure to participate in enrichment activities that show a proficiency in these areas.