An escrow officer’s main responsibility is managing all the paperwork involved in real estate transactions so that funds held in escrow can be released, and the home or property can be closed on.
An escrow officer will deal with lenders, real estate agents, buyers, sellers, home inspectors, termite inspectors, roof certification professionals, courts, and title officials from the state the real estate is located in.
An escrow officer is allowed to converse with both buyer and seller as to the steps involved in the real estate transaction and any delays in the process but must maintain absolute equality and demonstrate no favoritism to either party involved in the transaction at any time.
Success as an escrow officer requires experience, a thorough knowledge of all real estate paper work and transaction details, facility with computer programs, and the ability to deal with people in a variety of positions and frequently in ill humor. An escrow officer must, above all else, be detail oriented and capable of noting the smallest detail that is absent or incorrect on all the forms necessary for a real estate transaction to be legally processed.
There is usually no requirement for a college education to become an escrow officer. The standard career track involves specific training in all aspects of the real estate application and closing process. Most in-house training is specific to the state that an escrow officer will work in.
Higher level position as an escrow officer may require a degree in finance or accounting. Some companies offer certification programs that are nationally recognized as part of the training for an escrow officer. Some escrow officer positions require specific education in real estate, finance, or business administration.
Typing and computer skills are a necessity for a successful escrow officer. Knowledge of smart phone technology and the use of apps can be an invaluable asset to a new escrow agent. Some training may be required in company specific computer software.
An escrow officer must be able to deal effectively and efficiently with people. Development of thick skin is a realistic necessity in being a successful escrow officer because people get upset with delays in real estate transactions and expect the escrow officer to be able to speed things along when, in reality, the escrow officer has to wait patiently for other people to complete their various parts of the real estate transaction.
Patience, attention to detail, people skills, a genuine desire to complete very detailed work successfully on as timely as basis as possible, and a thorough knowledge of all the details involved in real estate transactions make a great escrow officer.