Escrow, Inspections & Appraisal

This is the phase in which we learn more details about your most favored property choice.


Escrow:  Escrow begins when the buyer’s earnest money deposit and purchase offer is accepted by you.  Escrow ends when the buyer becomes the official new owner, registered in the county records.


Title Company and Escrow Holder:  Signature Properties can help you select a title company and escrow holder (often the same company), whose job it is to act as a neutral third party which holds all instruments necessary to the sale, including funds and deed with instructions as to their use.  The title company will research the complete recorded history of this property, to insure that the title is free and clear of encumbrances by the date of closing and that all new encumbrances are properly added to the title.  You will receive a “preliminary report” that will show current encumbrances and easements.  For example, some properties are subject to subdivision restrictions, covenants, and conditions which can place restrictions on materials used in a home construction or replacement materials or may limit various activities.  There may be recorded easements and encroachments, where others have limited rights to use your property or you theirs.  Signature Properties always strives to make sure you understand the title report in detail.


Contingencies:  Most purchase agreements provide the buyer with specific amounts of time to inspect the property, review the preliminary title report and all disclosure documents and obtain financing and insurance before they must actually complete their purchase of the property.  At the successful conclusion of each of these milestones, the buyer will remove that contingency of their purchase and move one step closer to the close.  Or, the buyer may use information they have learned to request a renegotiation of the terms of the contract (often the price).  This is when Signature Properties’ objectivity and experienced as your listing agent can really make a difference.  Signature Properties is the best at helping you make an informed decision on how to respond to the buyer.


Inspections:  The buyer has the right to have a wide variety of property inspections to determine the property’s condition and the cost of any impending repairs or upgrades.  Inspections may include roof, termite, pests, WDIs (wood destroying insects), chimney/fireplace, property boundary survey, well, septic systems, pool/spa, arborist, landscaping, watering systems, or mold.  You are entitled to a copy of any of their inspection reports.


Appraisal & Loan Process:  We recommend accepting offers from buyers who have a lender’s pre-approval letter.  This is because this is stronger than a pre-qualification letter.  In this phase of a transaction, the lender will send an appraiser out to the property to ensure that the property is worth the sales price.


It’s Time to Start Packing:  Signature Properties can recommend when it is time for you to start packing, based on our vast experience with transactions similar to yours.  Too soon, and you risk having your house in upheaval right when a buyers’ offer falls apart or we need to begin showing your home to prospective buyers again.  Via its long term experience and its “Real Estate Marketing Network”, this is a phase where Signature Properties shines and adds tremendous value to your property sell experience in many ways.


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