Q: Can I back out of a refinance if I did not sign the papers? And, how much will I have to pay.

A: If you’re refinancing your primary residence, you have a three day right to rescind the deal to refinance your home even after you have signed all of your closing documents at the table.

But it sounds as though you haven’t even gotten to that stage. Presumably, you applied for your mortgage and now you don’t want to close.

In some instances, you might not have to pay anything while in others you might be obligated to pony up for some of the costs. If you paid a fee upfront for the application process, you might end up losing that amount. But if you signed a document with the lender agreeing to pay for some of the out-of-pocket expenses associated with the refinance, you could wind up having to shell out for these fees.

For example, some lenders will have you pay an application fee and some amount of money to lock in your interest rate. That document may state that you will lose all or a part of these funds if you decide not to close.

Other lenders’ agreements may state that if you don’t close for any reason other than the lender decides to deny you the loan, you will have certain costs to pay.

You need to review the documentation you signed to see what it says about your obligations to pay. You may find that you’ll lose only your initial payment. If you can’t parse the legalese, get some help from a real estate attorney.

May 22, 2008.