Arizona Revised Statutes - Title 41 State Government - Section 41-2180 Trust and escrow requirements; rules; exemptions
41-2180. Trust and escrow requirements; rules; exemptions
A. Beginning July 1, 2012, each dealer or broker licensed pursuant to this article shall establish an independent escrow account with an independent financial institution or escrow agent authorized to handle such an account in this state as prescribed by title 6, chapter 7 or 8, for each transaction involving:
1. A new manufactured home.
2. A new factory-built building designed for use as a residential dwelling.
3. A manufactured home, mobile home or factory-built building designed for use as a residential dwelling that is previously owned and that has a purchase price of fifty thousand dollars or more.
B. For the purposes of subsection A of this section, a financial institution or escrow agent is independent if the individual or entity is not controlled by the licensee, a family member of the licensee or a business affiliated with the licensee and the licensee, family member or business affiliate does not have a majority interest in the financial institution or escrow agent.
C. The owner of a mobile home park who also is or owns a dealership licensed pursuant to this article to sell new units may sell a new manufactured home or a new factory-built building designed for use as a residential dwelling as a licensee without complying with subsection a of this section if all of the following apply:
1. The home will be sited in a mobile home park that is owned by the park owner.
2. At the time of the sale, the park owner has on file at the office of manufactured housing the name and address of all mobile home parks owned by the park owner, the name, address and license number of the licensed dealership and documentation showing to the satisfaction of the office of manufactured housing that the park owner either holds the license, owns a majority interest in the license or is controlled by an entity that holds a controlling interest in the license.
3. At the time of the sale, the licensed dealership has posted with the office of manufactured housing a dealer bond in an amount of at least one hundred thousand dollars in a form satisfactory to the office of manufactured housing covering sales by parks sharing common control.
D. Each dealer or broker who is licensed pursuant to this article and who sells manufactured homes, mobile homes or factory-built buildings designed for use as residential dwellings or a manufactured home, mobile home or factory-built building designed for use as a residential dwelling that is previously owned and that has a purchase price of less than fifty thousand dollars shall maintain a trust account or an escrow account with a financial institution or escrow agent located in this state and shall deposit all earnest money received for the sale of manufactured homes, mobile homes or factory-built buildings designed for use as residential dwellings in such account. The department shall conduct an audit of each dealer's or broker's trust or escrow account, including any transactions with an independent escrow account, at least once every two years. Beginning July 1, 2012, a purchaser under this subsection may request that the dealer or broker establish an independent escrow account and if such a request is made in writing no later than the time the purchase contract is signed, and the seller consents, the dealer or broker shall comply with this subsection by complying with subsection A of this section. A licensee handling a transaction under this subsection shall disclose to the purchaser, in writing and before or at the time the purchaser signs the purchase contract, that the purchaser may request in writing the use of an independent escrow account, and that the transaction will otherwise be handled through a trust account controlled by the licensee.
E. All dealers or brokers shall notify the deputy director in writing when the trust or escrow account has been established by indicating the name and number of the account and the name and location of the financial institution used.
F. The dealer or broker, in writing, shall authorize the depository to release any and all information relative to trust or escrow accounts to the deputy director or the deputy director's agent, employee or deputy.
G. The dealer's or broker's earnest money receipt book shall reflect all earnest monies received and shall be at the minimum in duplicate and consecutively numbered.
H. All earnest monies shall be deposited in the escrow account or trust fund account no later than the close of the second banking business day after receipt.
I. The terms or instructions for any escrow account opened under subsection A or D of this section are deemed to be and enforceable as part of the purchase contract. All parties to the purchase contract and the licensee shall sign the terms and instructions. If practicable, the escrow terms or instructions shall be included in the purchase contract or stated in an addendum to the purchase contract. The licensee shall provide a copy of the purchase contract to the escrow agent even if the escrow terms or instructions are contained in a separate document. The licensee shall promptly provide the escrow account information to all parties to the purchase contract once the account is opened.
J. At a minimum, the escrow terms or instructions shall contain:
1. Identification of the escrow agent with information containing at least the name, address and telephone number of the agent.
2. All conditions or requirements that affect or pertain to closing the escrow account and disbursement of the monies in the account.
3. Any conditions or requirements where monies are to be disbursed from the escrow account in advance of the account being closed.
4. Any conditions or requirements where additional monies or documents must be deposited with an escrow agent after the escrow account is opened.
K. A dealer or broker may deposit and maintain up to two hundred dollars in the trust account to offset service charges that may be assessed by the financial institutions.
L. Every deposit into a trust account shall be made with a deposit slip that identifies each transaction as follows:
1. The amount of deposit.
2. The names of all parties involved in the transaction.
All receipts for monies deposited in escrow shall be made accountable by containing the same information.
M. A complete record shall be retained by the dealer's or broker's office of all earnest monies received. The record shall contain provisions for entering:
1. The amount received.
2. From whom the money was received.
3. The date of receipt.
4. The place of deposit.
5. The date of deposit.
6. The daily balance of the trust fund account deposit of each transaction.
7. When the transaction has been completed.
8. The date and payment for all goods and services the dealer has contracted to provide.
N. All earnest money deposited in the trust or escrow account shall be held in such account until one of the following is completed:
1. An application for title transfer has been made.
2. The transaction involved is consummated or terminated and a complete accounting is made.
O. On completion pursuant to subsection N of this section, the earnest money deposit shall be conveyed to the lending institution or the dealer, broker, purchaser, seller, manufacturer or lienholder, whichever is applicable.
P. The dealer or broker shall retain true copies of the purchase agreements, earnest money receipts, depository receipts, evidence of delivery documents and evidence of consummation of sale or termination of sale for a period of three years.
Q. The deposits referred to in this section shall not be used for any purpose other than the transaction for which they were provided.
R. Notwithstanding any other provision of this section and except that this subsection does not apply to an independent escrow account established pursuant to subsection A of this section, before an event listed under subsection N of this section is completed, a licensed dealer may release trust account earnest monies to pay for flooring or inventory for the unit that is the subject of the transaction for which the earnest monies were provided. Either a licensed dealer or broker may release trust account earnest monies to pay other lawfully imposed interim loan amounts and charges imposed by a financial institution or other bona fide lender on the unit that is the subject of the transaction for which the earnest monies were provided. The dealer or broker shall not make any payment out of trust account monies pursuant to this subsection unless done in compliance with all of the following:
1. The payment is made no more than ten business days before the completion date pursuant to subsection N of this section.
2. The payment is made directly to the financial institution or other bona fide lender.
3. The payment is recorded in the dealer's or broker's records under this section and documented by a receipt, a payment record or any other evidence from the financial institution or lender.
4. If the transaction is terminated, the dealer or broker replaces the amount of the payment in the trust account within three business days after receiving written notification of the termination.
This subsection does not affect any other rights or obligations between the purchaser and the licensed dealer or broker.
S. The board shall adopt separate rules for dealer trust and escrow accounts and broker trust and escrow accounts. At a minimum, these rules shall contain trust and escrow account requirements for the following:
1. Record keeping.
3. Service fees or charges.
5. Advances or payments out of trust and escrow accounts.
6. Closing or termination of sales transactions.
7. Auditing or investigation of trust or escrow account complaints.
T. This section shall not apply to a real estate broker or salesperson licensed pursuant to section 32-2122 and pursuant to this article when the unit is sold in conjunction with real estate.Sections: Previous 41-2173 41-2174 41-2175 41-2176 41-2177 41-2178 41-2179 41-2180 41-2181 41-2182 41-2182.01 41-2182.02 41-2182.03 41-2182.04 41-2183 Next
Last modified: February 20, 2012