Escrow Process and Timetable

Many home buyers are confused by the seemingly complicated and drawn-out process of buying a home. A particular area of confusion seems to revolve around the escrow process. 

Once your offer is accepted and signed, it becomes a contract and thus begins the escrow process.  This process involves a third party who will control the steps that are necessary to complete the sale, including title search.  The escrow process can last from a few weeks to a couple of months and is dependent upon a number of factors, including the desires of the seller and buyer, the timetable for funding, and other considerations.  We will monitor the escrow process and keep you informed of how escrow is progressing, and when a step arises that requires your attention. Once everything is completed and you have signed your documents at closing, the funds will be disbursed to the seller and you will be given the keys to your home. The following timeline is a basic timeline of how escrow works, and is intended for informational use only. Escrow timelines can change based on a variety of factors.

  • Escrow agent receives the contract.  The escrow agent will then send initial instructions on escrow to the seller and the buyer and may request more information about the transaction. 
  • After receiving a preliminary title, escrow will mail the title "commitment" to the parties. Escrow agents will then begin to clear off any mortgages, lines, judgments and so on from the title.
  • The escrow agent will prepare the necessary documents that are needed to close the sale, including the warranty deed, closing disclosure for the seller, tax affidavits, and any documents that are required by the Lender.
  • Escrow will typically receive the loan document from your lender about three days prior to closing.  New CFPB rules were put into place October 2015, which changed the way Lenders provide information and documentation to the escrow agent.
  • The escrow agent will prepare documents for the parties to sign at closing.  An appointment will be made for the seller and the buyer to sign the closing papers.  The Lender will provide the buyer with the amount of funds needed to close the sale.  Funds must be in the form of "certified funds" (cashier's check).
  • Once signed, the lender will review the closing documents and approve them. After approval by the lender, the escrow agent "fund the file", disburse funds to appropriate parties and record the documents.  

Contact us now if you are interested in buying a home or selling your home. We can guide you through the process.  Buying or selling a home can be a complicated process that involves lots of legal jargon and paperwork. Let us be your guide as you take this momentous step in life. Call us today!