You may have questions, and we have all the answers! Here are the most frequently asked questions we receive from clients, brokers and agents on a daily basis. If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to our friendly staff for clarification.
Is your money safe?
We’re licensed by the Department of Business Oversight (DBO) which binds us to the most stringent guidelines in our industry.
All of our employees are approved by the DBO and subjected to background checks by the Department of Justice. We’re regularly audited by the DBO & participate in internal financial audits by a CPA firm licensed in the State of California.
We’re also bonded by Escrow Agents’ Fidelity Corporation (EAFC) with insurance similar to that which is provided by the FDIC which protects your assets when deposited with a trusted bank.
All of these standards – and then some - provide assurance that your money is safe and that we’re fulfilling our obligation to guard money and protect your assets.
What types of services do you provide?
Most contracts that involve the transfer, lease, or financing of real or personal property can be placed in Escrow. You may be involved in Escrow not only when you buy or sell a home, but also when you buy a mobile home, sell a business, or transfer stock in a closely held business.
Prize fighters have even been known to have their purses guaranteed through an Escrow depository. The Buyer and Seller should demand the protection of Escrow for any transaction with a substantial investment.
Do I really need escrow?
Of course! Whether you are the Buyer or the Seller, you want assurance that no funds or property will change hands until all of your instructions have been followed.
As a buyer, what am I responsible for?
If the transaction is contingent upon a new loan, it is your responsibility to arrange this loan. Your real estate Agent can be helpful in obtaining a Lender, since he or she actively participates in the real estate industry.
Do I really need escrow?
The Escrow Officer is a trained and experienced professional that can provide you with the assistance required to close your transaction quickly and effectively. This professional person may, under the terms of the instructions, make the decision that the conditions of Escrow have been met, and then order the transfer of the affected real or personal property to the interested parties.
Many Escrow Officers proudly display their professional designations of certification and show these designations on their business cards and letterhead. The designations indicate that this person has met the high standards of education and experience required for certification by the California Escrow Association.
Escrow Instructions are ready.. Now What?
When the Escrow Instructions have been prepared, read them carefully to determine that they are complete and properly reflect your total agreement. If you have questions or concerns, discuss them with the Escrow holder before signing. Once the instructions have been signed, they become the basis for the conduct of the Escrow.
Do I receive interest on my money while in escrow?
No. Funds are held in a non-interest bearing account and do not earn interest while held by us in Escrow.
Can I get legal advice from an Escrow Officer?
An Escrow Officer is NOT a legal counselor and cannot give you advice. Remember, the purpose of Escrow is to take, and comply with, instructions to carry out the mutual agreement of the principals. In the event of a disagreement of the parties, the Escrow Officer must remain neutral until an agreement is reached.
How can I make sure my escrow goes smoothly?
You can begin by sharing with us how we can make it go more smoothly for you. Do you like email or phone calls? Do you have multiple mailing addresses? Do you prefer to come to our office to sign documents or to work through them on your own at home?
Aside from that, watch for mailings and email from our office and do your best to respond quickly. Much of what we do is time sensitive and delays cause more delays down the line. Our documents should be clearly marked in the spots that need to be signed/initialed/notarized.