First American Title Insurance Company offers full escrow services on transactions for which we are issuing title insurance. The cost of this service is dependent upon the transaction value and the extent of service required. Contact your First American escrow officer for details.
In a real estate transaction, escrow provides a "safety mechanism" for all parties involved in the real estate transaction.The escrow agent is an impartial third party who holds the funds and legal instruments necessary to complete the transaction and makes concurrent delivery of the deed to the purchaser and the purchase money to the seller when all of the terms and conditions of the transaction have been performed.
The authority given to an escrow agent is strictly limited by the instructions provided by the parties involved. These instructions are usually contained within the purchase agreement. Consequently, an escrow agent acts on the mutual instructions given and does not represent any party to the transaction. Some of the tasks an escrow agent may perform are as follows:
- Order payoff information on existing liens;
- Calculate and prorate taxes, liens, interest, rents and insurance policies;
- Arrange for title insurance protection for the buyer and lender;
- Pay costs and liens as agreed upon by the parties to the transaction;
- Close the transaction after all instructions from buyer and seller have been satisfied;
- Prepare a closing statement for the parties to the transaction, showing disposition of funds in the transaction; and
- Arrange for recording of the conveyancing documents and any other legal instruments necessary to transfer title to the property pursuant to the purchase agreement.
Black's Law Dictionary defines "escrow" as:
A writing, deed, money, stock or other property delivered by the grantor, promisor or obligor into the hands of a third person, to be held by the latter until the happening of a contingency or performance of a condition, and then by him delivered to the grantee, promissee or obligee. A system of document transfer in which a deed, bond, or funds is delivered to a third person to hold until all conditions in a contract are fulfilled.
Post-Closing Inquires: Copy of HUD-1 Settlement Statements, unpaid property taxes or other post-close issues
Unclaimed Property Department: Lost or stale dated checks involving an escrow transaction
National Default Services: Loss mitigation, foreclosure, REO title, residential rental, and trustee services for all aspects of the default servicing process
Nontransaction Related Inquiries
Accounting: Vendor inquiries regarding lost or stale dated checks
Warning: It has come to our attention that certain parties on Craigslist advertising property for rent, lease or sale, are replying to inquiries with emails that contain reference to the Escrow Process at First American and this website. Although First American does provide escrow and title services, please be aware that First American is not involved in transactions as described in the Craigslist messages. Please refer to Craigslist information regarding Scams and other considerations involving transactions http://www.craigslist.org/about/scams.
Unclaimed Property Department
National Default Services