The Escrow Process
The escrow is a legal procedure for handling the details of the real estate transaction from the time the purchase agreement is ratified until the title is transferred and the sale is completed. A title company typically manages the escrow.
The escrow officer, a neutral third party in the transaction, must complete specific instructions received from the buyer's and the seller's agents before title is transferred and funds are disbursed. Instructions from both agents must be in agreemnt for the escrow to move forward.
The escrow is usually opened the next business day after mutual acceptance of the purchase agreement. The buyer's earnest money is then deposited into the escrow.
Preliminary Title Report
The title company searches the public records for pertinent information about the property. Who is the owner of record? What liens exist against the property? Are there any easements that affect the property? Are there any judgements that have to be cleared before title can be transferred? Any such items must be resolved during the escrow period.
The title insurance policy is protection for the buyer against forgeries, errors in public records, and other specific items. A CLTA (California Land Title Association) title insurance policy is used to protect the buyer. The ALTA (American Land Title Association) title insurance policy is issued to protect the lender.
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Francine@FrancineDiPalma.com or 510-982-4421