Ten Commonly Asked Escrow Questions - Escrow and Your Title Company

1.) When can you tell me the amount of funds required to close escrow?

Upon receipt of your loan documents and preparation of your escrow instruction, the title company will contact your real estate agent and/or you to let you know the amount of funds you will need to close escrow.

2.) Who will call me to schedule an appointment?

Normally your real estate agent will call you. However, sometimes the title company will call to make arrangements for your signing.

3.) Can I give the title company a personal check?

No, according to California State Law, all funds must be in the form a cashier's check or via wire transfer. The title company does, however, accept teller's checks as long as they are drawn from a California banking institution. Please verify that your bank will issue a teller's check. Let them know that you are purchasing a home and the check is being issued to a title company.

4.) When do I get my keys?

At the close of escrow your real estate agent will contact you regarding the disbursement of the keys. Usually this is on the possession date.

5.) How much time should I allow for my signing appointment?

Please allow 35-45 minutes for your signing appointment.

6.) What will the escrow officer explain to me at my appointment?

Any and all loan documents drawn by the lender of your choice, escrow instructions with terms of sale per your purchase contract, the estimated escrow statement, preliminary report, etc. The escrow officer will explain any reports and inspections that may be required on the property. The escrow officer will also provide you with a complete package of all documents you have signed so that you may take it home for further review. Should you have any questions after reviewing your package, please do not hesitate to contact your real estate agent.

7.) What is a Statement of Information?

Statements of Information provide title companies with the information they need to distinguish the buyers and sellers of real property from other people with similar names. After identifying the true buyers and sellers, title companies may disregard the judgments, liens or other matters on the public records under similar names.

8.) When should I shop for homeowners/fire insurance?

Due to recent natural disasters in our state, I suggest that you start shopping for homeowners/fire insurance as soon as your offer is accepted (it is a good idea to call your current insurer first). Know the age of your home when shopping for insurance. Please have your agent contact your escrow officer when you have made your decision. If you are purchasing a condominium, you will now have to purchase homeowners/fire insurance (no longer covered in the monthly dues).

9.) What will I need to take to the Title Company when I go in to sign my papers?

You will need to bring your cashier's check payable to your title company (if the amount was given to you previously). Bring a valid driver's license, California I.D. card, valid passport or Military I.D.

10.) When will I get my deed showing proof of ownership?

The day escrow closes is the day the deed records with the county and you become the owner of your home. It could take 6-10 weeks from that date for the county to mail you the original signed/recorded deed.

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