Escrow: Now What?
Congratulations, you are on your way to owning your new NorCal home! Follow these suggestions (and the advice of your escrow officer and your NorCal Home Realtor®), so that escrow and settlement with go as smoothly as possible.
You will be asked for the down payment you contracted to provide on your purchase. You can choose to put down as much or as little as you want and can qualify for (depending on your loan program), but remember, the more you put down toward the total price of your home, the less time it will take you to pay off and the lower your mortgage payments will be every month.
During this period of purchasing your home, you are going to need an escrow or settlement company to act as an independent third party so that you know when and who to give your money to get the deed to your new home. The escrow or settlement company will hold your deposit and coordinate much of the activity that goes on during your escrow.
Pursuant to your purchase contract, your deposit check will be placed in escrow and cashed. Assuming the sale goes through, this money will be applied to the purchase price of the home. If the sale is not consummated, your purchase contract may entitle you to receive all of your deposit back. In certain instances, however, the seller may be able to retain some, or all of this money as liquidated damages. Prior to executing a purchase contract, it would be wise to discuss this with your agent and/or with your counsel regarding whether or not it is your best interest to have a liquidated damages clause as part of your contract.
It can be a long, stressful time for a lot of buyers but once your escrow has closed, you're the proud owner of your new home. Congratulations! If you have questions, submit the form below and we'll get back to you right away.