Title insurance is a crucial component of the real estate process that protects prospective home buyers against specific risks. If you have ever considered purchasing a house, then you have likely come across this term. Despite conducting extensive research and due diligence, it is possible to overlook crucial details about a property that may cause issues during the closing, such as falsified documents or unresolved property conflicts.
Here’s what you need to know about title insurance and why it’s so critical to anyone who wants to buy a home.
What Is Title Insurance?
Title insurance refers to a type of insurance that protects home buyers from any issues with the previous homeowner. These issues could include prior debts, liens, and other claims of ownership. Title insurance is necessary to protect you as the purchaser if someone else comes forward claiming ownership of the property, violations in property codes, and more.
What Should You Look For In A Title Report?
Your real estate attorney assisting with title insurance will run what is called a title report. This will uncover any hidden issues that could prevent you from successfully transferring ownership of the home.
Ideally, your report will not show any obvious issues. But if it does, these are some of the most common:
Every now and then, people will create false documents to fake the chain of title ownership. If the identity of the legal property owner is unknown, this clearly throws a wrench in transferring that ownership.
Home buyers will need to know who the rightful prior owner is so they will not have to debate property ownership with anyone else. These disputes tend to happen if a home is put on the market in the event of the owner’s death. Without a clear will, it is not uncommon for other living relatives to come forward claiming ownership of the property. Which leads us to…
Matters Of Estate
This is the proper name of such a scenario in which an heir claims ownership. It can happen when a newly discovered estate is revealed.
Errors In Public Record
Occasionally, clerical errors can be made on the property deed, which affects its validity.
While encumbrances may not prevent the transfer of property ownership per se, it does mean that there is a third party with interest or certain liabilities. This can result in diminished property value.
“Outstanding liens” refer to any property repairs or additions that were never paid off in full. These could be used as collateral towards the previous homeowner’s debt, which could also become your debt.
Any legal claim to the property could get derailed if the identity of the rightful owner was impersonated during the sale.
Violation Of Building Codes
A home’s title can be affected if it turns out that certain building codes were violated. These codes can vary by state.
Title Insurance Services In South Florida
There’s a lot to think about when buying a home, and lots of paperwork that takes place during the process. Let an experienced lawyer walk you through everything to ensure that the sale goes smoothly from start to finish.