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Get answers to your escrow questions

It's that time of year—your annual escrow analysis shows what your monthly mortgage payment will be in 2023.

Understanding your escrow analysis

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Join one of our Vibrant mortgage service specialists as she walks you through the typical escrow analysis statement and answers some of your most pressing questions about why your monthly payment may be changing.

Note, if you pay prior to January 1, 2023, your online account may not reflect your updated 2022 payment. Please call first to verify your updated payment amount.

The basics

What is an escrow account?

An escrow account is a special holding account we use to pay your property taxes and homeowners insurance premiums. We manage this account for you so that you only need to make one monthly payment and don’t have to worry about multiple payment due dates.  

The amount of money that goes into your escrow account is based on our best estimate of what your insurance and property tax expenses will be in the coming year. 

What is an escrow analysis?

The amount of money that goes into your escrow account reflects our best estimate of your property tax and homeowners insurance premiums for the coming year. Because these expenses can fluctuate over time (based on your home’s changing market value and other factors), it’s rare that the amount set aside for your escrow account exactly matches what is paid out.

Every fall, we analyze your account to see whether we’ve set aside more money than you need (an overage) or not enough (a shortage). We also take a look at your latest insurance premiums and property tax bills so that we can adjust your payments for next year to reflect any changes. 

What happens if there’s not enough money in my escrow account to pay my taxes and insurance?

If your account has a shortage, your taxes and premiums will still be paid—but you will need to pay the difference back to us. There are two ways to do this: We can either increase your mortgage payments next year to cover that amount, or you can submit a payment for the entire sum before noon on Saturday, December 31, 2022. 

What happens if there’s MORE money in my escrow account than was needed?

If your account has an overage of less than $50, we’ll carry the remainder over to next year to provide a cushion for any potential shortages. If your account has an over of $50 or more, you will receive a check for the surplus amount that you can spend as you see fit. 

Can I choose not to escrow my insurance premiums and property taxes?

In some cases, you can. Contact us and we’ll determine if that is an option for you.

Monthly payments

When does my new monthly payment go into effect?

January 1, 2023. If you typically make your January payment prior to the first of the month, please make sure to adjust that payment to reflect the new payment amount and avoid any late fees.  

IMPORTANT: Your online account will not reflect the updated amount due until January 1, 2023. This is so that we can make adjustments for members who choose to pay all or part of their escrow shortages up until December 31. 

Why is my monthly mortgage payment going up?

While the principal and interest on your mortgage payment haven’t changed, your property taxes and/or homeowners insurance premiums have increased since your last escrow analysis. We therefore have to set aside a larger amount of money each month to cover these increases. 

How do I update my automatic payment?

You need to complete and submit an escrow change form to us by noon on December 31, 2022. If you pay your mortgage through a non-Vibrant account, you will need to provide your account number.

If you pay extra toward your principal balance or would like to start, make sure to note the payment amount on your form.

My mortgage payment has increased by more than my taxes and/or insurance premiums have. Why?

That indicates that your escrow account had a shortage in 2022 (your estimated escrow contributions were smaller than your actual taxes and/or premiums). In addition to increasing your payment to accommodate those higher charges, you also need to make up the amount of the shortage. If you prefer, you can pay some or all of the shortage amount by noon on December 31 and decrease your payments for next year. 

Why is my monthly mortgage payment going down?

While the amount of principal and interest you pay toward your mortgage hasn’t changed, either your property tax assessment or homeowners’ insurance premiums have declined since last year. Enjoy the savings! 

If I pay into the escrow now, can I avoid my payment going up at all?

No, the payments will always be based at minimum of what your taxes and insurance are. Since those typically increase annually, paying the shortage does not mean the monthly amounts won't increase for next year. 

Escrow shortages

Can I pay my shortage up front? How long do I have to make the payment before it affects my payment?

Yes, you can pay all or a portion of your shortage. This must be done by noon on Saturday, December 31, 2022.  

How do I pay my shortage?

You can make your payment through our online banking platform. After logging in, you will see your home loan appear on the main dashboard screen. Click on your home loan to expand this area. Select "Pay Now." In the bulleted options, you will see an "Escrow Only" option. Enter the appropriate amount here. Finish your transaction by selecting "Submit Transfer." Upon payment, please contact us to have your 2023 payments updated accordingly. 

Escrow overages

When will I receive a refund of my escrow overage?

Your check will arrive within two weeks after you receive your escrow analysis letter.  

I had an overage, but I didn’t receive a check. Why not?

If your overage amount was less than $50, it remains on deposit in your escrow account to provide a cushion for any potential shortages in 2023.