Why do I need Escrow?
Weather you are the Buyer or Seller, you want assurance that no funds or property will change hands until all of your instructions have been followed. With the increasing complexity of business, law and tax structures, it takes a trained professional to supervise the transaction.

What is the Escrow process?
The escrow service company of holder prepares the escrow instructions from information supplied by the Real Estate Agent in accordance with the Real Estate Contract signed by Buyer and Seller. These contract instructions, once signed by the principals, provide authorization by the Seller to have the escrow holder deliver to the Buyer the documents necessary for ownership when the Buyer has deposited the agreed upon purchase price and when all other instructions have been complied with.

The instructions also provide the buyer’s authorization to deliver the purchase money to the Seller once the escrow holder has recorded the Deed and escrow has ordered a Policy of Title Insurance insuring the Buyer will receive clear title.

What happens at the closing?
After the Buyer has signed loan documents, the documents are returned to the lender for funding. When all conditions of the loan have been met, the lender will fund the day prior to recording. When all conditions of the instructions have been met, the escrow holder “closes the escrow” by recording the documents. After recording, escrow will disburse funds according to instructions, including loan payoffs, real estate commissions, recoding fees, etc., and deliver the proceeds to the Seller and title to the Buyer.

As a Buyer entering into Escrow what must I do?

  1. If your contract calls for a new loan, it is your responsibility to arrange for this loan. Your Real Estate Agent can be most helpful. He or she will be knowledgeable as to the current mortgage market. Application should be made as soon as possible.
  2. Your lender will have certain insurance policy requirements. You will need to provide escrow with your insurance agent’s number so that we may make certain those requirements are met and the policy is ordered in time for the closing.
  3. The law requires your closing funds to be deposited into escrow in the form of a cashier’s check drawn on a California bank. Please arrange with your bank or savings & loan to draw on a California bank the checks you will need. Contact your Escrow Officer for help in determining what funds will be required. Wired funds are also acceptable.
  4. Stay in contact with your lender and Real Estate Agent regarding the progress of your loan.

When will Escrow need my closing funds?
After escrow has received loan documents from the lender, we will advise you of the final monies required to close escrow. Escrow will need all monies two days prior to closing.

As a Seller entering into Escrow what must I do?

  1. Return all instructions – notarize documents as soon as possible
  2. Advise escrow what taxes have been paid and when.
  3. Keep payments current on all loans during the escrow period.
  4. Provide escrow with your forwarding address prior to the close of escrow.
  5. If your property is insured by California Fair Plan, advise escrow.

When will Seller receive net proceeds check?
In most instances, on the day of recording, escrow can disburse the Seller’s proceeds. Contact you Escrow Officer regarding disbursement of your proceeds.

What Escrow fee & closing costs are required?
An escrow fee is charged to each party, based upon the size and complexity of the transaction. Other fees include: title insurance premium, lender’s fees, recordation fees, real estate commission and documentary transfer tax.

After closing now what?
As the Buyer, you should make arrangements for possession of the property, keys, garage door openers, etc. through your Real Estate Agent. Any recorded document to which you are entitled will be sent to you from the County Recorder.

What if the transaction isn’t completed – What happens to my deposit?
When a transaction fails to close, law requires a cancellation agreement be obtained in writing from Buyer and Seller. This may take a reasonable amount of time. The amount of the cancellation changes will vary depending on costs incurred.