Escrow starts the process with opening a title search. The title report will give all the information about the property in regards to mortgages, liens, easements, taxes, etc. As escrow is the gathering place for all money and information, they will receive the Buyer’s earnest money deposit (EMD) within 3 days. Escrow will also prepare the escrow instructions for both sides – Buyer and Seller. The new grant deed will be prepared in the Buyer’s name and will need to be notarized. Escrow will start a conversation with the Buyer’s lender and continue to monitor the loan process throughout escrow.
The most important thing to remember about the escrow process is that escrow is a neutral party to the transaction. They gather and disburse money and information. They are not on anybody’s “side”. If there is anything that arises in the escrow process that warrants both sides making decisions to move forward then these issues must be put in writing. Escrow can only act when both sides approve in writing of a change to the approved purchase contract. Any other action on escrow’s part is not allowed. For example, the Buyer’s agent cannot call escrow and tell them to change the closing date without getting it in writing and approved by the Seller.
Since the average escrow for a standard sale in Southern California’s Inland Valley is 30-45 days, there is enough time to thoroughly get to know and understand the process of escrow. Please ask questions of your agent or escrow officer if you do not understand what’s going on, after all they are the ones that do this for a living and can help with any concerns you have.
p.s. if your escrow involves a short sale, the time frame can be much longer…….