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How to choose an escrow company in Corona, California.

Choosing an Escrow CompanyCollie - All escrow companies in California can be grouped into two basic categories:
  • Licensed (Independent)
  • Controlled (Subsidiary)
So what’s the difference and does it matter?
  • Licensed escrow companies are independent businesses licenced by the California Department of Corporations. This License regulates the procedures and practices of the escrow company and subjects them to strict requirements designed to protect consumers.
  • Controlled escrow companies are non-licensed businesses that can be owned by a variety of entities, including Real Estate Brokers, Mortgage Brokers, Banks, Savings and Loans, and Title Insurance Companies.  Such companies fall under the jurisdiction and requirements of a variety of supervising agencies, with regulations and requirements that vary widely.
One fact remains constant, The independent escrow companies licensed by the Department of Corporations have the most stringent regulations designed to protect consumers. They simply have higher standards.

The requirements of the Department of Corporations assure that every licensed escrow company meets the highest standards in the industry. Consumer protection rules & regulations unique to Licensed Escrow Companies include the following:
  • A Certification Program for all employees in the company, including fingerprinting and background checks by the Department of Justice..
  • A requirement that a manager/escrow officer with 5 years of experience be on-site.
  • Financial stability requirement, including a minimum of two audits per year.
  • Prohibiting employment of convicted felons or anyone who has been disbarred from the escrow industry.
  • Membership with the Escrow Agents Fidelity Corporation, which provides a $5 million fidelity bond.

In my opinion, the bottom line is that an independent licensed escrow company is the best possible neutral third party to complete your real estate transaction. Whether searching for an escrow holder yourself, or looking to recommend one to a client or friend, a licensed escrow company gives peace of mind.Corona is home to some of the best independent escrow companies in California: New Dimensions Escrow, Emerald Escrow, Town and Country Escrow and Cornerstone Escrow are all members of the professional organization, The Escrow Institute.*
*EIC members are licensed by the California Department of Corporations, undergo background checks and fingerprinting by the California Department of Justice and are bonded by the Escrow Agents’ Fidelity Corporation. 



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By Deborah Nance

NMLS#202003

Your Local Southern California Reverse Mortgage Professional

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iReverse Home Loans, LLC, NMLS#810502 originates reverse mortgages in Alabama, Alaska, Arizona (MB-0919584), California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Ohio, Oregon (ML-5378), Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont (1164-MB), Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin. 

Important Information: Reverse Mortgages are neither "endorsed" nor "approved" by the Federal Government. The FHA (Federal Housing Administration) provides certain insurance benefits for lenders and borrowers in connection with the lender’s HECM loans; the FHA does not make or originate loans. The owner(s) retain title to the property that is the subject of the reverse mortgage until the person sells or transfers the property and is therefore responsible for paying property taxes, insurance, maintenance and related taxes. Failing to pay these amounts or failure to maintain the condition of your property may cause the reverse mortgage loan to become due immediately. A reverse mortgage is a complex loan secured by your home. Whether such mortgage makes sense for you depends on your financial situation and needs. For these reasons, we strongly recommend that you consult with a qualified independent housing counselor, family members and other trusted advisers before making this decision. This website is not from HUD or FHA and was not approved by HUD or any government agency.

Comment balloon 7 commentsDeborah Nance • February 22 2011 09:01PM

Comments

Hi Deborah,

Excellent info and I'd imagine very few CA REALTORS really understand the difference between the different types of escrow companies.

I carry a chart I have in my planner that's a great visual for clients when I explain the difference.

Posted by Lynda Eisenmann, Broker-Owner,CRS,CDPE,GRI,SRES, Brea,CA, Orange Co (Preferred Home Brokers) about 7 years ago

Hi Lynda,

 

Back in the day (85-90) I used to work as an escrow officer for an independent escrow company.  One of the most rewarding, stressful and demanding jobs a person could have.  Escrow officers are a wealth of information and a great partner to have in your transactions.

(We still need to get together!)

 

Deb

Posted by Deborah Nance, Southern California , Reverse Mortgage Specialist (Orange County, Corona, Riverside, Los Angeles) about 7 years ago

Deborah, I totally agree, you need to find the right one

Posted by Janice Roosevelt, OICP ABR, ePRO,Ecobroker ( Keller Williams Brandywine Valley ) about 7 years ago

Hi Janice!  Thanks for responsding to my post.  Not all states are "escrow" states, some are "attorney" states - I've never attended an attorney closing.  What type of closings do they do in PA?

Posted by Deborah Nance, Southern California , Reverse Mortgage Specialist (Orange County, Corona, Riverside, Los Angeles) about 7 years ago

Lynda did a great post today on what escrow is.

Posted by Deborah Nance, Southern California , Reverse Mortgage Specialist (Orange County, Corona, Riverside, Los Angeles) about 7 years ago

Great information Deb! The California Escrow Association is also a great Escrow trade organization. Ambergate Escrow, which is also an Independent, is a member. Actually, I will have been on the board for the Riverside County Escrow Asso for the last 4 years. Thanks Deb!  Lori

Posted by Lori Renberg Brown almost 7 years ago

Hi Lori.  I am so glad to know you.  You are a true professional.  You know what, you have to invite me to the next RCEA meeting.  I used to be on the board when I had my mobile notary business.  Oh, like 10 years ago.  They even had a baby shower for me!  They are a fantastic caring group of professionals!  Independent escrow rocks!

Posted by Deborah Nance, Southern California , Reverse Mortgage Specialist (Orange County, Corona, Riverside, Los Angeles) almost 7 years ago

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