In our area, Buyers/Lenders almost always choose the Closing Attorney. It is equally important to choose a professional, experienced, and detailed oriented closing attorney.
The Closing Attorney's office handles the title order and examination, prepares the tax, HOA, fee prorations, Seller's pay off, reviews Survey, Liens on the property, and prepares documents/reviews Buyer's lender's instructions regarding the home.
The title examination includes all public records (Deed, Mortgages, Assessments, Liens, Wills, Divorces, Etc). The attorney verifies the legal owner and that all debts owed against the home are summarized.
Once all of the above are complete then they will prepare the closing statements (HUD) and disperse to all parties for review. Once approved by all parties then the closing can commence.
At the closing the Seller will sign the deed and closing affidavit. And then the Buyer will sign the new note and mortgage. The Seller's old loan is paid off by wiring of funds. Lastly the Seller, real estate professionals, attorneys (and Home Warranty Company, Loan Officer, Title Agent) are paid.
After the closing the deed is recorded in the county in which the property is located. Title insurance policies are prepared and sent to the new lender and to you (if you ordered Owner's Title Insurance which is highly recommended).
Here are a few of the Closing Attorneys that have provided excellent service to my clients:
Mattingly and Ford (no relationship to me that I know of)
Pitt and Frank
Borders and Borders