Preparing for a Smooth Close of Escrow

As your home purchase nears closing, there are important steps to take. Two to three days before closing, you’ll need to pay the “funds needed to close” in the form of a cashier’s check or wire transfer for the balance of your down payment and closing costs. The day before closing, your lender will wire the loan funds into the escrow account. On the closing day, the title company will record your ownership with the County Clerk’s office, finalizing the transfer of title. While you may not need to be present, it’s essential to coordinate movers and cleaners for a smooth transition into your new home.


2-3 days before closing you will be required to pay the “funds needed to close”. This consists of the balance of your down payment and all closing costs in the form of “guaranteed funds” such as a cashier’s check or wire transfer. Your escrow officer will notify you of the exact amount.


Your lender will wire the loan funds into the escrow account.


The title company transferring ownership of the property will have a representative at the County Clerk’s office. They will record your ownership with the County. At that time, title is considered trans- ferred and you own the home. This event could take place at any time between 8:30 and 5:00 on the day of close of escrow. Geoff will call you to let you know when we have been notified of the recording.


It is important to understand that ownership and possession are two different things. We will negotiate your possession date as part of the purchase contract. For instance, we may close escrow on Friday, but your possession of the home may not begin until Saturday at 5:00 pm. Geoff will be able to give you your new key in time for you to take possession of the home at the agreed upon time.


Pack your things, coordinate your movers (or your friends that own trucks), set up house cleaners or carpet cleaners as needed. In California, it is not necessary for you to be present on the day of close of escrow. Everything that you will need to sign will have been done by this time.

The following links will provide valuable information on the home buying process:

    • PRE-APPROVAL VS. PRE-QUALIFICATION Pre-approval involves a comprehensive review of your financial background by a lender, while pre-qualification is a preliminary assessment based on basic information provided by you.
    • CLOSING COSTSClosing costs are the fees and expenses associated with finalizing a real estate transaction, typically including loan origination fees, appraisal fees, and title insurance.
    • PROPERTY TAXES – Property taxes are assessed by local governments based on the value of a property and are used to fund public services such as schools, roads, and emergency services.
    • BUYER DO’S AND DON’TSAdvice for buyers on getting pre-approved for a mortgage, researching neighborhoods thoroughly, and more, while covering things to avoid, such as making major purchases before closing and skipping the home inspection.
    • CONSIDER YOUR BUYING OPTIONS When considering your buying options, Dore and Geoff Baker encourage you to explore different neighborhoods and property types to find the best fit for your needs, ensuring you make a well-informed decision.
    • MAKING AN OFFER When it comes to making an offer on a home, Dore and Geoff Baker advise careful consideration and strategic planning to ensure you present a compelling offer that aligns with your budget and goals.
    • KEY CONCEPTS Understanding the key concepts in making an offer on a home, including earnest money, escrow, contingencies, and title insurance, is crucial for a smooth and successful real estate transaction.
    • DISCLOSURE & DISCOVERY Disclosure and Discovery rules ensure that buyers are fully informed about the property’s condition and any potential issues before completing the purchase.
    • HOME INSPECTION Home inspection is a crucial step in making an offer on a home, providing buyers with a detailed assessment of the property’s condition to make an informed decision.
    • BUYER’S ESCROW PLANNING TIMELINE Use this chart to draft your buyer’s escrow planning timeline, ensuring you stay on track and meet key deadlines throughout the home buying process.