Not all assets are what we call "liquid", meaning that they translate to easily-accessible cash. Liquid assets include anything in your checking or savings account, stocks, bonds, or money market funds. Some assets which can easily be sold, such as gold, are also considered liquid.
Non-liquid assets include things that are worth money but difficult to access. The best example of a non-liquid asset is real estate; you cannot usually sell a piece of property quickly—be it a lot, house, or condo—without taking a loss. For example, to sell a house, you typically need to conduct an inspection, make repairs, find a good real estate agent, and hold out for the best possible deal—and even then it is very rare for the buyer to be able to pay you all cash up front.
Can you use non-liquid assets as bail?
If the defendant or someone who is posting bail on the defendant’s behalf owns property they can post bail using that property as collateral. This process is a little trickier than using cash, but is commonly done! You don’t have to sell your home in order to post bail, meaning you don't risk taking a loss from its sale.
What are the Steps?
Firstly, you’ll need to verify your ownership of the property. You can do this by providing a tax or mortgage statement and then having the title searched. Secondly, you’ll need to have the property appraised. This will help you not only understand if your home has enough value to cover the cost of bail, but also will disclose for the bail agent any lens against the property.
You’ll then be able to prepare the documentation. You’ll need to sign both a promissory note and a deed of trust or mortgage. This process might seem complicated, but it protects both the bail agent and the borrower. If you’re confused by any of the steps, your bail agent has likely gone through this process hundreds of times and can help guide you.
If you want to know more about using real estate as collateral, call us at All City Bail Bonds! We're one of the most trusted bail bond businesses in Washington State, and we can promise you that we'll make the process of using your property as collateral safe, secure, and easy.