Riverside Realtor Blog - Alma Dizon

Alma shares her experiences and observations as a Realtor in Riverside California.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Keys will be given after title records

Lately, I've had trouble with buyers trying to get keys before title records. I've even had one buyer's agent give his client the key that was in the lockbox. He sent me an email, but I didn't receive the email until after I went to take the lockbox down and discovered that the key was missing.

The reason why is that the buyer is still not technically the owner (at least, not according to county records) before title records even after the loan has funded. So I can't hand over the keys until then, and the residential purchase agreement allows for possession at close of escrow or within three days after but not before. A separate agreement has to be made to allow the buyer to move into the property ahead of title recording.

On the RPA, the buyer can put down what time of day they wish to get possession, but this is at best an ideal schedule. I've seen agents put down 10 am on close of escrow. That's nice, but confirmation can take hours, and if it's a special afternoon recording on a Friday afternoon or at the end of the month, confirmation may come after 5 pm.

As for the agent who took the key out of the box ahead of time, I chose not to complain because my seller had already moved out months before and it was a special recording on a Fri. afternoon. I had planned on taking the lockbox down the previous weekend but had left it up to accomodate the buyer who had to reschedule the final walk-through at a time that I couldn't make. But from now on, I'm taking the lockbox off after the inspections and will be leaving them at my office, just in case.

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