A Detailed Escrow Timeline

Dated: 02/20/2019

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A typical escrow, which starts once a buyer and seller agree on price and terms, is 30 days long.  If you are doing an FHA or VA loan it's usually a bit longer, around 40 days.  If you are buying a property with all cash (no loan) it can be closed in as few as 5 days.  Here is a timeline for a typical escrow:

Day 0 - Offer is accepted by the seller.  Buyer and seller agree on price and terms.

Day 1 -Escrow is opened.  The agents will open an escrow account and provide the signed contract and other necessary documents to the escrow officer.  The escrow company is like a "middle-man" between buyer and seller and will handle the closing documents and the exchange of money.

Day 3 - Buyer's initial deposit.  The buyer gives an initial deposit to the escrow company, this is typically equal to 3% of the purchase price. This money will remain with the escrow company and be used for the down payment and closing costs.

Day 7 - Seller provides disclosures.  The seller provides the buyer with all the disclosures pertaining to the property.  This is important information for the buyers as it will tell them everything the seller knows about the property and any issues or defects there may be.

Day 10 - Homeowner's insurance selected.  The buyer selects a company to provide homeowner's insurance to protect their new investment.  This is also a lender requirement.

Day 14 - Conditional loan approval.  The buyer receives conditional loan approval from the lender and provides the additional documents requested by the underwriter.

Day 17 - Appraisal & home inspections.  The appraisal, which is done by a third party the bank hires, is completed and reviewed by the lender and the buyer.  Within the first 17 days the buyer has finished and reviewed all of the inspections of the home they deem necessary.

Day 18 - Request for repairs. The buyer can ask the seller to repair problems found in the inspections.  This is negotiable and the seller does not have to agree to any or all the requested repairs.  A price reduction or seller credit may also be offered to the buyer.

Day 21 - Final loan approval.  The buyer will receive final approval for their loan.

Day 25 - Verification of property condition.  The buyer will do a final walk-through of the home ensuring it's in the same condition as when the offer was accepted, and any repairs have been completed.

Day 27 - Signing loan documents and providing down payment, closing costs.  The buyer will sign the loan documents needed to fund the loan. The buyer will also provide escrow with the funds needed for the remaining down payment and closing costs.

Day 30 - Escrow closes, transaction complete.  The escrow company records the necessary documents to transfer ownership with the county recorder's office.  The buyer is now on title as the owner of the home and will get the keys.


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Noa Porter

Noa has been exceeding the expectations of his clients since launching his real estate career in 2003. His client list includes CEO's of Fortune 500 companies, biotechnology executives, professional ....

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