Protecting Your Home with Title Insurance
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Purchasing a home is likely the biggest investment you will make in your lifetime. So before you commit to the transaction, you want to be certain that the property's title is free of other claims.
A title insurance company does all the research to insure that a property has clear title. Making sure that a property is clear of all legal encumbrances is the job of a title company.
You pay the title insurance company a single premium which includes the cost of verifying clear title and covers you in case some fault is later discovered in the title.
The title company searches the property's title history. The title insurance company can usually find any title problems that may arise and have these problems cleared-up before you close on the property.
Because Real Estate Law is so complicated, you need an expert to make sure that all previous transactions have been correct, so you don't end up with legal problems or a problem with the title to your property. Your owner's policy will describe the property and outline the limitations on your ownership. It will also set forth the title company's responsibilities should any claim covered by the policy terms arise. Typically your title insurance will protect you in the following cases:
- Contested title — This usually happens when someone who owned or even lived in the home before you claims to still hold an interest. In this case, the title company will defend the title at no expense to you.
- Defective title — "Defective title" covers any number of problems with the title to your home. It can even include a "contested title". Other examples of title defects include problems with legal access to the property, easements that make the property less usable, unusable, or unsaleable. Many other complicated problems define "Defective title" or "Clouded Title." The title insurance company will find these title problems, or should they miss them, insure your loss up to the amount of the policy.
At American Mortgage Advisers, Inc, we answer questions about this process every day. Call us at 214-865-7442.
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