When you are buying a home, you assume that the previous owner has a clear right to use or sell the property. However, clerical mistakes, liens, or real estate law disputes can leave ownership in question, even if the seller believes that they have a clear title. Title insurance protects you from these risks and minimizes the risk of losses in the future.
How Does Title Insurance Work?
A property can have a variety of defects on the title, including tax liens, lawsuit judgments, or competing claims from the descendents of previous owners. Unfortunately, if you purchase a house with a title defect, you will likely have to pay to clear the cloud before being able to sell the property again. These defects become your responsibility whether or not you knew about them when you bought the house.
A title search helps minimize the risk by bringing these issues to light before a sale. Before the closing, a real estate law attorney will comb through public records to determine whether the property is subject to liens or any other disputes. To guarantee their work, law firms and closing agencies will typically issue title insurance.
If a defect is discovered later, such as when you are trying to sell the property, the title insurance policy will pay to resolve the issue. These policies typically include coverage up to the value of the property, which ensures nearly all clouds can be cleared.
What Are the Benefits of Title Insurance?
Resolving clouds on property titles can cost thousands of dollars and potentially derail a sale later. They can also make it more difficult to get a home equity line of credit or take out a second mortgage, essentially locking away your equity until the issue is resolved.
Title insurance provides peace of mind and a layer of protection against future costs. It also minimizes the chances of real estate law disputes if you decide to put the property on the market later.
Whether you are purchasing a home or investing in commercial real estate, Lee, Livingston, Lee, Nichols & Barron, P.C., will provide the detailed legal advice you need. Their real estate law attorneys have been serving individuals and businesses throughout the Dothan, AL, area since 1948 and are fully authorized to issue title insurance backed by First American Title Insurance Company. Visit their website for more on their real estate law services, or call (334) 792-4156 to schedule your initial consultation today.
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