Because land is permanent and can have may owners over the years, various rights in land may have been acquired by others (such as mineral, air or utility rights) by the time you come into possession of it, even if the land has never before been built upon. In order to transfer a clear title to a piece of land, it is first necessary to determine whether any rights are outstanding.
A title search is a comprehensive review of the available historical records concerning a property. Some of these records include but are not limited to: deeds, court records, name and property indexes. The reason for the title search is to authenticate the rights of the sellers to transfer ownership, and to determine if the property has any claims, defects and other rights or burdens against it.
Performing a title search can reveal a number of title liens and defects, along with additional encumbrances and restrictions. Included items include any unpaid taxes, open mortgages, seller’s judgments and any restrictions limiting the land use.
Absolutely. There are certain “hidden hazards” which even the most thorough search will never find. One example is when the previous property owner improperly stated his marital status, and as a result his legal spouse files a claim. Furthermore, forgery, fraud, defective deeds, mental incompetence of the transferor, identical and/or similar names and clerical errors by the clerk are additional examples of hidden hazards. These property defects usually come up after the purchase of your home and can threaten your legal right to ownership of the property.
This be contingent on the type of claim filed. In the worst-case scenario, you could sustain a complete loss of your home and property, while still being liable for the remaining mortgage balance. Generally, the majority of claims aren’t this severe, but regardless, any claim will cost aggravation, money and legal fees for your defense.
In the event that a claim is presented against your property, according to the terms of your title policy, a legal defense will be provided and will cover the court costs and related legal fees. In the event that the claim turns out to be valid, any actual losses that the policy holder suffers will be reimbursed as per the cap amount of the policy.
Unfortunately, a deed is not always enough. The deed is not proof of ownership, but rather a document that is used as a right of ownership when land is transferred. The deed doesn’t speak to the rights that another person may have to the subject property. Furthermore, a deed does not show any title encumbrances such as claims or liens against the title.
It might and maybe it might not. An abstract provides the property title history available in public records and may contain various errors and other hidden hazards which may put your ownership rights at risk without having a title insurance policy.
An attorney’s opinion will not yield any better results in finding title issues, because an attorney’s search no matter how comprehensive is still centered around the public records. Moreover, contrary to a title insurance company, an attorney will not be liable in the event that you suffer a loss due to hidden issues with your title.
Yes, it does not take long to encumber title. The owner of the property you are purchasing could have either gotten married, divorced, granted an easement or made construction improvements on the property as well as encumbered a lien against the property. Due to any of the aforementioned reasons, conducting a current title search is the only way to avoid such issues.
The builders title insurance in Florida only provides protection for the builder and not you. As previously mentioned encumbrances may have attached to the builder’s property since the time that his title insurance policy was issued.
There are two types of title insurance policies, the loan policy and an owner’s policy. A loan insurance policy is used to protect the interest of the lender in the property for the remaining balance on the buyer’s mortgage. An owner’s title insurance policy protects the buyer’s equity and/or investment in the property based on the amount of coverage as per the policy.
Although the cost varies slightly from county to county, typically title insurance in Florida comes to around one percent of the cost of the property. The cost of the policy includes an exhaustive title search, review and additional associated services. In contrast to other types of insurance premiums, that are paid on a yearly basis, title insurance premiums are only a one-time payment, generally at settlement.
Coverage will last for all of the time that the owner or the owner’s heirs maintain an interest in the property.
From a reputable, Florida licensed title insurance company such as Compass Land and Title, which has several locations in the Tampa Bay area, including Palm Harbor, Tampa and Saint Petersburg. Moreover, a title insurance company such as Compass Land and Title can perform a closing anywhere in the State of Florida.