How Important Is a Signature From 70 Years Ago to Your Home Ownership?
Anybody who has been through the home buying process knows that it is no easy task. With the constant barrage or requirements, paperwork, fees, and phone calls, it is easy for things to bet overlooked.
One of the most commonly overlooked aspects of the home buying process a title search and subsequent title insurance. Available only prior to settlement, title insurance is possibly one of the most important aspects you should pay attention to as, once you sign the papers, it’s too late.
The easiest way to think about what title insurance is and its benefits is an example.
Imagine a scenario where the property you are buying is part of an inheritance. However, this inheritance occurred over 70 years ago, even before the current owner purchased the property. In the will, it was noted that the property was to be sold and then the proceeds split up between four surviving children.
However, in this scenario, one of the children was estranged from the family in the lead up to the person passing away, and subsequently wasn’t notified of death or the inheritance.
Fast forward to a future where you have signed the papers and are enjoying creating a home with your family. Also at this time, the fourth person named in the will mentioned above is made aware of their entitlement.
In this instance, the nominated person can raise a claim against part ownership of the title of your home, and make a demand for compensation of monies lost during a transfer that occurred decades earlier and prior to the sale of the home to its previous owner whom you dealt with.
While it can seem preposterous that such a claim can be made, it very much can, and it is very much legal. This is the very scenario where title insurance has its primary benefit.
It all starts with a title search. A title search is an investigation performed by your title insurance agent into the history of your title. Namely, the legalities surrounding any transfers. It is during this search that potential situations such as the one mentioned above can be uncovered. This search looks into numerous factors of each transfer to ensure that it was completed legally and correctly.
Once the title search is complete and the agency is aware of their position, a title insurance policy is drawn up. This policy outlines the level of financial protection that will be afforded. In the above scenario, title insurance is the product that would compensate the claimant for monies lost during a previous sale, without any financial burden to yourself, the current homeowner.
As you can likely tell, title insurance is a necessity for any homeowner looking to purchase a home, and starting the process and obtaining a policy is as easy as shopping on the Groupon Coupons page for Ann Taylor. A quick search online will show you your nearest title insurance agents, or, ask your family and friends who have been through the process before if they have any recommended agents for you to use.