Ellen was a wonderful realtor to work with. Refreshing approach to selling homes. She believes the home will sell itself. No fluff no stuff. She is honest and straight forward. We appreciated this about her. She made herself available to us from the start and never let up all the way through closing. She was informative about the area since we were moving from out of state and this was a big help. Our daughter recommended her because she had been her buyer's agent. I appreciated how she had helped my daughter with the purchase of her 1st home. So Ellen thank you on two counts!.Happy Home Owner for Ellen Hough
Our experience with Ellen Hough as our realtor was wonderful. Moving can be a stressful time especially if you are moving from another state. Ellen was very helpful and very knowledgeable about this area. She went above and beyond our expectations. She was always there for us if we had any questions or concerns and made us feel like we were her only clients! Ellen Hough did a outstanding job and I would recommend you to use her as your Realtor.Noi L. for Ellen Hough
Ellen is without a doubt the BEST agent we've ever had the pleasure of doing business with. Not only did she take us around to numerous (14+) houses in the Jacksonville, NC area, she was extremely honest. Ellen was straight forward with her opinions of the places she was showing and we were so happy to have someone so open and helpful. She stuck with us through six weeks of a battle to buy a "short sale" and then put up no fight when we backed out of the short sale and moved on to the home we did eventually buy.
I look forward to all of our future business with Ellen and her wonderful team at EXIT Independence Realty. She's not only our buying agent but her company is also our property manager for our rental property. She's amazing. You'll love her...happy home buying!Nikki L. for Ellen Hough
Buying or selling a home (or other piece of real property) usually involves the transfer of large sums of money. It is imperative that the transfer of these funds and related documents from one party to another be handled in a neutral, secure and knowledgeable manner. For the protection of buyer, seller and lender, the escrow process was developed.
As a buyer or seller, you want to be certain all conditions of sale have been met before property and money change hands. The technical definition of an escrow is a transaction where one party engaged in the sale, transfer or lease of real or personal property with another person delivers a written instrument, money or other items of value to a neutral third person, called an escrow agent or escrow holder. This third person holds the money or items for disbursement upon the happening of a specified event or the performance of a specified condition.
Simply stated, the escrow holder impartially carries out the written instructions given by the principals. This includes receiving funds and documents necessary to comply with those instructions, completing or obtaining required forms and handling final delivery of all items to the proper parties upon the successful completion of the escrow.
The escrow must be provided with the necessary information to close the transaction. This may include loan documents, tax statements, fire and other insurance policies, title insurance policies, terms of sale and any seller-assisted financing, and requests for payment for various services to be paid out of escrow funds.
If the transaction is dependent on arranging new financing, it is the buyer’s or the buyer’s agent’s responsibility to make the necessary arrangements. Documentation of the new loan agreement must be in the hands of the escrow holder before the transfer of property can take place. A real estate agent can help identify appropriate lending institutions.
When all the instructions in the escrow have been carried out, the closing can take place. At this time, all outstanding funds are collected and fees- such as title insurance premiums, real estate commissions, termite inspection charges- are paid. Title to the property is then transferred under the terms of the escrow instructions and appropriate title insurance is issued.
Payment of funds at the close of escrow should be in the form acceptable to the escrow, since out-of-town and personal checks can cause days of delay in processing the transaction.
The following items represent a typical list of what an escrow holder does and does not do:
THE ESCROW HOLDER:
serves as the neutral “stakeholder” and the communications link to all parties in the transaction;
prepares escrow instructions;
requests a preliminary title search to determine the present condition of title to the property;
requests a beneficiary’s statement if debt or obligation is to be taken over by the buyer;
complies with lender’s requirements, specified in the escrow agreement;
receives purchase funds from the buyer;
prepares or secures the deed or other documents related to escrow;
prorates taxes, interest, insurance and rents according to instructions;
secures releases of all contingencies or other conditions as imposed on any particular escrow;
records deeds and any other documents as instructed;
requests issuance of the title insurance policy;
closes escrow when all the instructions of buyer and seller have been carried out;
disburses funds as authorized by instructions, including charges for title insurance, recording fees, real estate commissions and loan payoffs;
prepares final statements for the parties accounting for the disposition of all funds deposited in escrow (these are useful in the preparation of tax returns).
THE ESCROW HOLDER DOES NOT:
offer legal advice;
negotiate the transaction;
offer investment advice.
Your local title company should be happy to provide additional information.