The written document where a property owner (grantor) transfers an ownership interest in real property to a buyer (grantee). There are many types of deeds that are different in the type of covenant made by the grantor:
- Warranty Deed
- Grant Deed
- Bargain & Sale Deed
- Quitclaim Deed
There is not usually any effect if a deed is lost or destroyed as a deed is simply evidence of the title, not the actual title. A deed is normally recorded in the public records to protect the grantee against claims from an outside party.
The right to or ownership of land. Also, it is the evidence of the right to an estate. Title may be held individually, jointly, in trust, or in a corporate or partnership form.
There are two types of title insurance---a lender's policy and an owner's policy. Provided by a title insurance company, title insurance is a comprehensive indemnity contract where they warrant to cover any losses arising through defect in title. Where auto or life insurance covers customers from something that hasn't happened yet, title insurance in effect protects the policyholder against a loss from some occurrence that has already happened. The policy protects the insured from title defects and will defend the policyholder's title in court against lawsuits. Some common title defects are:
- Forged documents
- Undisclosed heirs
- Misfiled documents
- Incorrect martial status
- Confusion from similarity of names
- Mistaken legal interpretations
An investigation of public records performed by a title search company to determine if there are any title defects in the chain of title. The title search is required by lenders who will order the examination at the cost of the borrower to determine if there are any outstanding liens on the property. At the time the title search is ordered most if not all of the terms of the contract have been completed.
A property that is in some form of difficulty. In most cases it is a home that is going through the short sale process (a home that will be sold for less than what is owed on the mortgage) or is pending foreclosure.
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