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Title & Escrow News and Information
When people talk about a real estate purchase, they sometimes use the terms “signing” and “closing” interchangeably in reference to the event when the buyers sign documents with Escrow. However, there are several events that take place between the buyer’s signing appointment and the actual closing of the real estate transaction. Let’s take a moment and review that process.

Signing of Documents

Escrow receives instructions to prepare the settlement statement so the lender can provide the Closing Disclosure to the buyer/borrower for acceptance and signature. During the waiting period, the escrow company can prepare the necessary escrow and title transfer documents. After the required waiting period, the lender will then forward the documents for signature to the escrow company, so that the signing appointments can be scheduled.

Lender Reviews Documents & Funds the Loan

Once the loan documents have been signed, the escrow officer delivers them back to the lender either by email, fax or physical delivery for review. When the lender is satisfied that all required documents have been signed and all outstanding loan conditions have been met, the lender will notify escrow that they are ready to disburse the loan funds to escrow. Upon receipt of the wire from the lender, the escrow officer is authorized to send the transfer documents to the county for recording. The time frame for review is normally 24 to 48 hours.

Excise Tax

Real estate transactions in Washington State that involve conveyance or transfer where consideration is paid, require the payment of excise tax. All appropriate tax amounts must be paid before the county will allow the Deed conveying title to be recorded.

Recording is Authorized

Once recording is authorized by the lender, and all funds have been received, documents are either electronically recorded or hand-carried to the county recorder’s office by the title insurance company. The Warranty Deed is recorded first, showing the transfer of the property to the buyer, with the Deed of Trust recorded next. Recording the Deed of Trust just after the Deed insures the lender’s first lien position on the property.

Closed and Recorded

Recording numbers are the unique and specific numbers given by the county recorder’s office to a properly executed legal document thereby making it part of the public record. In other words, when we have recording numbers, the buyer is “on record” as holding title to the property and based on the possession date in the purchase agreement, the new owner may take possession and proceeds may be disbursed to the seller.

We are pleased to announce the availability of Ticor Title's comprehensive Buyer/Seller guide in PDF, eBook, and Print Formats. This guide is designed to provide meaningful information and answer commonly asked questions that home buyers and sellers have throughout a real estate transaction.

Our goal with the Buyer/Seller Guide is to improve the overall experience of buyers and sellers by providing education and insights that demystify Title Insurance, Escrow, the CFPB, Taxes and more. This guide is a useful tool in setting proper expectations for the complex process of buying and selling a home.

How to Get the Buyer & Seller Guide

For your convenience, there are three ways to access the guide:
Buyer & Seller Guide Available Formats
Formats & How to Access
Downloadable PDF Download the Buyer & Seller Guide in PDF format for viewing, sharing, and local print. Download here: Buyer and Seller Guide to Title & Escrow
eBooklet eBooklet format presents well on tablets, smart-phones, and desktops and provides a means of linking to and sharing individual pages or sections of the document. Click here to view the Buyer & Seller Guide in eBook format.
Print The Buyer & Seller Guide is available in a high-quality print format upon request. Please contact your Ticor Title Sales Executive to reserve yours today.

For Immediate Release:

Effective August 1, 2016 we will begin charging the appropriate sales tax on e-recording/Simplifile fees. The sales tax on the e-recording/Simplifile fee will be determined as follows:

File Type Which Tax Rate is Used
Title & Escrow Tax rate determined by escrow location/settlement agent contact location
Escrow Only Tax rate determined by escrow location/settlement agent contact location
Title Only Tax rate is determined by Title Company Contact's Tax rate
 

If you have questions, please contact your Ticor Title Sales Executive or Escrow Officer.


We are pleased to announce that John Kirkpatrick has joined the Ticor Title team in Lynnwood!

A Seasoned Professional

Like many professionals, John Kirkpatrick was led into the world of title and escrow in his early 20s by a family member. While his first role served it's purpose for him at the time, it was not long before a simple "job" turned into a passionate career. With a drive and motivation to show the world what the meaning of true customer service and responsiveness can be, John's career grew exponentially. During his nearly 15 year career, John has held titles such as Customer Service Manager, Centralized Services Manager, Director of Sales Operations, and Business Development Manager.

A Passion for Excellence

While being inside the office supporting his teammates has been extremely rewarding, in recent years John felt a calling to be in the field connecting and building meaningful relationships with clients directly. John is driven by an overwhelming desire to prove to this industry that top-notch customer service is not a thing of the past. Through commitment and dedication to his craft, he strives to build trust and long-lasting partnerships with his clients. John's refreshing authenticity and sense of camaraderie builds solid foundations in which relationships flourish. He wears his heart on his sleeve, his clients see his passion, and they connect with him on a truly genuine level.

John Kirkpatrick

AVP/Sales Executive
425-599-9015
john.kirkpatrick@ticortitle.com
19020 33rd Ave W Suite 550
Lynnwood, WA 98036

Map & Directions

Open an Order

Please join us in welcoming John to the Ticor Title Family!

There are times when a minor is in title. Maybe the deed from Mom & Dad says “Susan B. Jones, a minor.” Or, when she shows up to sign papers, the Realtor® notices the nanny who brought her in. Of course, a child can inherit property. The parents never intended for the child to own it so soon, but it happens.

Are there problems with minors in title?

Most of us know there may be a problem, but what is it, exactly? Can little Suzie even be in title? Can she convey or mortgage the property? How?

Well, yes a minor can be in title, and it happens all the time. That’s not the problem – if she doesn’t want (or need) to sell or mortgage the property now, she will eventually be old enough to do something with it.

But until Suzie reaches the legal age of majority, she is under a type of “disability” because she lacks the capacity to enter in to binding contracts. If she signs title away when she is 17, she can disavow it when she reaches the age of majority and for some time thereafter.

What if a minor needs to sell or mortgage the property?

The only way for Suzie to sell or take out a mortgage is for someone to go to court, open a guardianship, appoint a guardian, get a court order authorizing the transaction, and have the guardian execute the deed or mortgage. Also, if a guardian has been appointed in another state, an ancillary court proceeding will be needed because the foreign court does not have jurisdiction in Washington.

All this can be expensive and time consuming and pretty onerous if the transaction has to happen now. But, there is no alternative – the horse is already out of the barn, so to speak. The conveyance to Suzie (or her inheritance) can’t be undone.

Other ways for a minor to own real estate

There are other more practical ways to deal with children owning real estate.  One is a trust, where title is conveyed to the trustee of the trust, or the trust is set up in a probate. In that case, the title company will need to see the trust document or the will.

A custodianship pursuant to RCW 11.114 is a simple alternative. In that case, title is conveyed to an adult of legal age: “John Paul Jones, as custodian for Susan B. Jones, under the Washington Uniform Transfers to Minors Act.” The statute provides for only one custodian per child per deed, and a trust company can be named as well, if the trust permits it. It used to be called the Uniform Gifts to Minors Act, and you might see this recital in a deed coming from another state. A deed can be accepted from a custodian in any state, which need only recite the adult custodian, the custodianship and the name of the minor.

When title is vested in a custodian, title insurers do not need to call for any proof of authority or documentation. This is an advantage of a custodianship over a guardianship for all concerned. Acknowledgments for a custodian would be for the adult individual, because there is no documentation to present to the notary, while a guardian would use the representative capacity (for a fiduciary) form.

Of course, during the custodianship the adult has a fiduciary responsibility to the minor, and can’t dispose of or use the assets for personal gain. The money from a sale of a house would still belong to the minor. But third parties, including title companies, don’t need to question where the money will end up.

What happens when the minor reaches legal age?

Once the minor reaches 18, 21 or in some cases 25 years of age (it all depends on the circumstances of the transfer), the custodian is to convey the property to the minor. But as an adult she can deal with the property in her own name. With a guardianship, the court action needs to be closed, and the property distributed to the minor.  A custodianship is a convenient way for a minor to hold title, but there can be estate planning and taxation ramifications when children own real estate. An attorney should always be consulted if a minor is or will be in title.


Custodian

Washington has adopted the Uniform Transfers to Minors Act. This is the most practical way for minors to “own” property. There is no document or agreement. The statute deals with the responsibility of the custodian to the child. Otherwise, you can have a…

Trust

A trust can be set up for a minor, either separately or by language in a will. The trustee can also transfer property to a custodian (who can even be the trustee) if the trust permits it. But if there is no trust or custodianship, you need a…

Guardian

A guardianship is often what happens when both parents are deceased without making provisions for how a minor child can deal with property. It’s not absolutely necessary unless real property must be sold or mortgaged, but a court must approve any real estate transaction.

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Minors in title to real estate
Minors to Title in Real Estate