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January 12, 2014

I go over the HUD-1 first

I go over the HUD-1 First

Some notaries public start the loan at the beginning and go in the order that the documents are in. Ninja notaries call this following the order of the universe. But, other notaries public start with the HUD-1 Settlement Statement first. It is sometimes helpful to go over the most critical figures in the loan. That way if there is a problem, you will know at the very beginning.

On the other hand, you could call the borrower up before you leave your home and go over the numbers. That way you can stop a bad signing right before it even starts! That is sort of like reading the weather report online before you drive two hours to the beach. After all, do you want to go to the beach while it is raining?

One of our notaries public likes to go over the bottom of the 3rd page of the HUD and get to the really critical information first. To each their own. Just remember — either follow the order of the universe or follow your own inner order (if you have one). Good luck!

Think ahead — go over the HUD-1 Settlement Statement

(1) Some notaries start the loan at the beginning and go in the order the docs are in.
(2) You could call the borrower up before you leave your home & go over the numbers
(3) One of our notaries likes to go over the bottom of the 3rd page of the HUD & get to the critical info 1st.



  1. I usually go over the HUD-1 first because if there are any issues with the numbers I feel it’s best to get that over with. There have many instances where the issue gets cleared up quickly with the Loan Officer and the signing moves along smoothly after that. Add to that I have never been brought to task by anyone for having the HUD-1 on the top of the pile.

    Comment by William Ponsot — January 18, 2014 @ 2:02 am

  2. Put yourself inside the head of your buyer, seller, or borrower. What would you want to know first? 1. How did the Title company arrive at the number they are asking for? That’s why we go over the first page of the HUD first. 2. As a buyer or “re-fier”, What is my new loan going to involve? For that reason we go over the third page that gives the details of the new loan. We also,at that time, tell them when the first payment will be due. If there are no problems or further questions about the above parts of the transaction, the rest is usually a slam dunk. We also mention that much of the rest of the package is a lot of repetition and everything just sails along as we mention what each page is for.

    Comment by Rodrigo Jones — January 18, 2014 @ 6:27 am

  3. Yep, I do the HUD and then the note.

    Comment by Oregon Notary — January 18, 2014 @ 5:26 pm

  4. I always go over the Hud first, and I do mine as I was trained at a title company, I start with the 2nd page first, I show the costs, their escrow if any, then I go to the front page and show the figure I just showed them on the 2nd page, their payoff and the gross amount they need, then I go through the credits to show if they have money coming back or paying or even. Then I go over the 3rd page to show the details of their loan. Then I will go through the package in order given because most companies want the package kept in same order it was sent, the only exception I make is if I come to the mortgage before the note, I will pull the note out and go through it first with them so they can see their terms, so they won’t be inclined to read the whole mortgage page by page.

    Comment by Linda K Cox — December 2, 2014 @ 6:32 pm

  5. I try to see the HUD before I print out docs to see if they owe money or are getting cash back. This avoids a lot of print out of docs if there is something wrong. Also at the closing I go over the terms of the loan first to make sure they are comfortable with the figures before we ever start signing.

    Comment by Barbara Wilson — July 23, 2015 @ 9:24 pm

  6. Recognizing this an old post, I disagree. I take care of identifying the borrowers first. If we don’t have the right people we are violating privacy laws by going over anything else. Numbers are the second topic of discussion.

    Comment by John Axt — August 18, 2017 @ 10:58 am

  7. I’m curious as to if any notaries received special training to explain the Closing Disclosure (loan closing statement) since the HUD-1 is mostly used now for reverse mortgage and cash nonloan) transactions.

    Comment by Venita Peyton — April 21, 2019 @ 3:31 pm

  8. Wouldn’t going over private and important detailed information on a loan of any kind be against the codes of privacy because we have not made proper identification with the signer?

    After all…MOST of them we have never met

    Comment by JACQUELINE — April 21, 2019 @ 5:41 pm

  9. I think I’ll pass on that advise

    Most of your posts have been pretty good though.

    Comment by JACQUELINE — April 21, 2019 @ 5:47 pm

  10. I put place holders for the Alta, CD, Note & Deed of Trust, and then present them in that order, When I get back or am ready to ship, I put them back in order and save my place holders for the next signing.

    Comment by Miguel Buchwald — April 21, 2019 @ 6:43 pm

  11. P. S. It goes without saying that the first thing you do is identify the signers, whether you follow the route of showing the ‘critical’ documents first or not.

    Comment by Miguel Buchwald — April 21, 2019 @ 6:45 pm

  12. I have handled 1,500+ loan signings–not the highest number–but every “refusal to sign” was bc of (prior to the CD) unexpected figures on the HUD, now unexpected figures on the CD/and or Alta Settlement Statement. We all get into the habit of putting all documents back in the order of the PDF(‘s), per our instructions from the vendor/title company/lender–whomever hires us, and I get that. My initial training was to “flag out”, use sticky notes, and I continue to flag all signatures/initials/places to fill in things like, “I acquired the property on MONTH, YEAR.” It doesn’t take long to go through page by page and I become familiar with THAT loan document and develop a short term memory of it by flagging out. It’s not that hard to put a big sticky note hanging out of the side to find the CD and the Alta Settlement Statement, show those to the signer(s), ask them, “Is this what you were expecting?” Also, that is when they can call their lender/title company with any questions. You give NO legal advice with this question, and some skittish signers will be more comfortable completing the loan package. I also tell them that Yesterday (or today) was the very first time that I saw their loan. Speaking of sticky notes, I now use a 4″x4″ sticky note with a pink highlighter slash across it to remind me to administer an oath for any jurats. Preparation with the paperwork, as in Anything in life, saves you time and grief.

    Comment by betty — April 22, 2019 @ 11:45 am

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