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First, a little about "escrow". An escrow company is brought on to assure your home closes on time and the transaction goes smoothly. When money is held by a third party in a transaction between a buyer and a seller, it's in escrow. An easy way to understand what an escrow company does is to compare it to PayPal for online purchases.

The escrow agent is careful to assure that all terms and conditions of the seller's and buyer's negotiated agreement are performed prior to the sale being finished. This includes getting monies and records, filling out required forms, and getting the release documents for any loans or liens that are to be paid off with the transaction, assuring you have a clean title to your property before the purchase price is fully paid.

The pieces of paperwork the escrow holder may obtain include:

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

Closing on the home takes place when all of the procedures of the escrow are complete. At this time, all payments and fees for inspections, title insurance and real estate commissions are taken. Title to the house is then given to you as now current homeowner and correct title insurance is issued as outlined in the escrow instructions.

The escrow company receives a payment when the closing is complete. As your REALTOR, I'll let you know what is an acceptable way of paying.

The Escrow Holder Will:

  • Write escrow instructions
  • Petition title inquiry
  • Comply with the bank's standards as specified in the escrow agreement
  • Intake funds from the buyer
  • Prorate interest, insurance, tax and other payments according to guidelines
  • Record deeds and other legal documents as instructed
  • Request title insurance policy
  • Close escrow when all terms of agreement of seller and buyer have been finished
  • Disburse payments and finish instructions

The Escrow Holder Will Not:

  • Tell you what's best - the escrow agent has to remain an impartial, third-party status
  • Dispense opinions about tax implications
The Escrow Holder Will:
The Escrow Holder Won't:
  • Assemble escrow instructions
  • Request title research
  • Meet lender's standards as specified in the escrow agreement
  • Accept payments from the buyer
  • Prorate tax, interest, insurance and other fees according to guidelines
  • Record deeds and other documents as instructed
  • Obtain title insurance policy
  • Close escrow when all terms of agreement of seller and buyer have been met
  • Disburse payments and finish instructions
  • Advise you - the escrow holder stays a neutral, third-party status
  • Give insight about future tax estimations

Mortgage Escrow Account

A Mortgage Escrow Account is started to make payments for recurring fees while there is a loan on the house. Usually, the home buyer makes a payment at closing and also makes regular deposits through their monthly mortgage payment to fund the Escrow Account.

This is a quick run-down of the escrow process. Your particular process may be different based on your lender and your escrow holder.

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700 E. Shaw Ave.
Fresno, CA 93710-7732