Frequently Asked Questions
Below you’ll find the answers to many of the questions we get asked everyday about title searches, insurance and real estate closing. If you have further questions, please feel free to give our office a call.
When you buy a home, you want to be certain it’s safely yours. But even the most diligent search of the public records could fail to disclose a number of title defects.
Things such as:
A forged will or deed
A title transfer by someone under age
A married person conveying real estate without his or her spouse
These are just a few of the problems that can suddenly surface. Without the protection of title insurance, you’ll be in jeopardy of losing your investment.
HOW TITLE INSURANCE PROTECTS
Are homeowners helpless against these and other pitfalls? Absolutely not. You can safeguard your real estate investment against these and other “horrors” with owner’s title insurance.
First, a service known as a title search describes, as well as possible, the condition and quality of the title to the land you are buying. Then, your title insurance protects you against mistakes or threats that might otherwise result in financial loss to you – including those hidden, unknown items.
Your title insurance protection is a permanent assurance that your ownership and use will be defended promptly against claims at no cost to you, whether the claim is valid or not.
WHO TITLE INSURANCE PROTECTS
There are two basic types of title insurance protection. One for the mortgage lender and one for the homeowner or real estate investor.
If a mortgage is to be placed on your new home, the mortgage lender will probably require that you purchase title insurance to protect the institution’s position as a holder of a mortgage loan. But this mortgagee’s title insurance policy doesn’t protect you, the homeowner. You need an owner’s title insurance policy to protect your investment.
You pay only once. There are no renewal premiums, and there is no expiration date on the policy. Yet the protection lasts as long as you, or your heirs, retain an interest in the property.
A SMALL COST FOR YEARS OF PROTECTION
The real estate you own represents stability, permanence and the hope of the future. Don’t take a chance and let your property be taken from you because of a flaw in the title. It makes good sense, for the relatively small amount it costs, to protect yourself with title insurance.
Closing costs or settlement costs are an accumulation of separate charges paid to different entities for the professional services associated with the buying and selling of real estate.
Some of the items associated with closing costs are:
Title Insurance Premium. Fee paid by an individual to insure he has a marketable title or – in the case of a lender – to insure their lien position.
Real Estate Commission. Fee paid to a real estate company for services rendered in listing, showing, selling and consummating the transfer of property.
Transfer and Assumption Charges. Fees charged by a lender to allow a new purchaser to assume an existing loan.
Recording Fees. Fees assessed by a county recorder’s office for recording the documents of a real estate transaction.
Loan Fees. Fees charged by a lender in connection with the processing of a new loan. These may include points, origination fee and credit report.
Escrow Fees. Fees charged by a title and/or escrow company for services rendered in preparing documents necessary in consummation of a real estate transaction.
Additional Settlement. Taxes, insurance, impounds, and interest prorations; termite inspection fees.
An agent will be happy to review the above and other closing costs with you and explain them before you finalize your transaction and take ownership of your property.
Just how much is the title insurance going to cost you? Not as much as you probably think. Only a small percentage of closing fees are actually for title insurance protection. Title insurance is less than 1 percent of the purchase price of your property.
Certified funds by either cashier’s check or wire transfer.
Yes, you can. While we would prefer you to come to our office because we would love to see your smiling faces, there are technologies of DocuSign, Remote Online Notarization (RON) and Mobile Notary (for additional fees) that will allow you to sign remotely.