Life of an Escrow

The following time line is based on a hypothetical 30-day escrow. Individual escrows may follow a different schedule and require different documents.

Day 1
Buyer and Seller sign a residential purchase agreement, a joint escrow instructions form, and any other documents required by the real estate agents. Buyer makes a good-faith deposit.

Day 2
Residential purchase agreement, joint escrow instructions and good-faith deposit are delivered to the Escrow Company.

Day 3
Escrow Company sends out additional escrow instructions and other pertinent documents to Buyer, Seller, Real Estate Agents, Brokers, and Buyer's Lender.

Days 4-10
Buyer and Seller return all escrow documents to Escrow Company. Buyer proceeds with physical/geological inspections on the property. Buyer's Lender provides written loan approval and time frame for loan documents.

Days 11-18
Termite report is prepared. Preliminary title report, natural hazard disclosures report, city reports, retrofit ordinances and homeowner's association documents (if any) are sent to the Buyer and Seller.

Days 19-21
Buyer and Seller approve any outstanding conditions.

Day 22
Loan documents are sent to Escrow Company.

Day 23
Buyer signs loan documents. Balance due is delivered or wire-transferred to Escrow Company.

Day 24
Loan documents are returned to Lender.

Day 25-27
Lender reviews documents. Buyer's closing funds must be deposited into escrow before Lender funds the loan.

Day 28
Lender schedules transfer of funds.

Day 29
Title receives Lender's wired funds. The Escrow Company authorizes the title company to release documents for recording the next day.

Day 30
Escrow closes when Escrow Holder receives confirmation that title has recorded.