RE/MAX Pros earnest money policy

For different reasons we have made the decision to not deposit earnest money in our trust account. Under most circumstances we deposit with the escrow company.

The ideal situation is to avoid a promissory note and have the buyer provide a check payable to the escrow company when an offer is prepared. Then after acceptance is obtained turn in check along with full documentation and a complete notice of sale to the front desk so that they have everything necessary to complete the file and then they can forward check to title company for you.

When offers are drafted and a promissory note is used and you do not know who the escrow company will be please make note payable to: Escrow Company. Within 4 days after acceptance the note shall be redeemed and made payable to escrow agency responsible for that transaction. The check will be turned in to the front desk and our staff will forward it to the escrow agent. Please note: a complete notice of sale shall be turned in so staff knows where to send the check. Redemption of earnest money is a contractual agreement and it must be handled in a timely fashion. Document your attempts to collect earnest money and if you can’t collect then please let me know. Do not rely on the buyer to turn in earnest money directly as it is your duty to collect. Also, some of us have a habit of collecting earnest money after inspections take place (the thinking being that if inspection does not work out why should we collect). If there is a dispute it is impossible to collect the money after the fact. Collect it within the 4 days as prescribed in the agreement or if for some reason you need more time for redemption make the appropriate change to the agreement reflecting that need.

In the event you write on a bank owned and you do not know who the title company is and they want a check and not a note have the buyer make the check out to the listing agency.

Exception: There is one exception and that is on HUD Homes. We are required to collect and deposit the earnest money and so the earnest money check shall be made payable to: RE/MAX Pros on these transactions.

There are a few other rare exceptions where we are required to retain the earnest money. On these rare occasions please let me know before collecting.

One last note on this. In the past we had a complaint filed over earnest money not being redeemed. If you handle earnest money in the prescribed fashion we have nothing to worry about. It is not your fault if you cannot redeem earnest money and you have documented your attempts and came to me with the problem, however, if you come to me when there is a problem because of carelessness then you will be at the mercy of the State and this is the one area of license law that you do not want to slip up in.