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The Purchase Process > The Escrow Process

The Escrow Process


The escrow process is the mechanism by which funds and documents related to a real estate transaction are assembled and conveyed to the appropriate parties.

The process is administered by an escrow company which, despite typically being chosen and paid for by the buyer, actually represents both the buyer and seller in the transaction. The company essentially insures that the sale closes on time and in accordance with the terms of the contract.

In order to accomplish that goal, they hold the earnest deposit monies in escrow, order & review the preliminary title report, obtain title insurance for the buyer and mortgage payoff information for the seller.

In addition, they are also responsible for calculating the settlement statements (the ubiquitous and infamous “HUD 1”) to insure that all of the closing figures are correct (including prorations, when required), arranging for both parties to sign all necessary documents, receiving funds from the lender, distributing those funds and making sure that everything is in order prior to recording.

In most cases, these companies will assign an individual escrow officer to administer your transaction and it will be that person’s responsibility to keep all parties informed of progress on “the file” and if any problems are encountered.

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