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Let's talk about "escrow". An escrow agent is hired to assure your home closes on time and the closing process goes smoothly. When money is held by a third party in a transaction between a buyer and a seller, it's in escrow. A simple way to think of what an escrow company does is to think of how you might use PayPal for online purchases.

The escrow company makes sure that the terms and conditions of the agreement between the sellers and the buyers are met prior to the sale being finalized.

These are the legal forms that escrow agents usually look for:

  • Tax statements
  • Fire and other insurance policies
  • Title insurance policies
  • Terms of sale and any seller-assisted financing
  • Requests for payment for various services to be paid out of escrow funds
  • Loan documents

You're ready to close when every step is complete in escrow process. At this time, all payments and fees for inspections, title insurance and real estate commissions are collected. The home's title goes to you and title insurance is issued per the policies of your individual escrow process.

At the close of escrow, in an acceptable form to the escrow. I'll keep you updated on the next steps.

The Escrow Holder Will:

  • Assemble escrow guidelines
  • Request title search
  • Meet lender's standards as outlined in the escrow agreement
  • Intake funds from the buyer
  • Prorate insurance, tax, interest and other payments according to instructions
  • Record deeds and other paperwork as instructed
  • Obtain title insurance policy
  • Close escrow when all terms of agreement of seller and buyer are met
  • Disburse funds and finish instructions

The Escrow Holder Will Not:

  • Tell you what's best - the escrow company must maintain a neutral, third-party status
  • Dispense opinions about the outcome of your taxes
The Escrow Holder Will:
The Escrow Holder Won't:
  • Prepare escrow instructions
  • Petition title research
  • Comply with the bank's guidelines as specified in the escrow agreement
  • Receive funds from the buyer
  • Prorate interest, insurance, tax and other payments according to instructions
  • Record deeds and other paperwork as instructed
  • Obtain title insurance policy
  • Close escrow when all instructions of seller and buyer are complete
  • Disburse funds and finalize instructions
  • Offer advice - the escrow holder must maintain a neutral, third-party status
  • Give insight about the outcome of your taxes

Mortgage Escrow Account

Creating a Mortgage Escrow Account helps keep track of on-going expenses while there's a loan on your house. Though most home buyers make payments via their monthly mortgage payment, Escrow Accounts are deposited into at closing as well.

Once you have the basics of the escrow process down, you can be a better buyer.

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