Title: Step by Step
Consumers work hard to find a real estate agent they feel comfortable with. As a buyer or seller, you are entitled to choose a Title Company you can trust to work efficiently and accurately, and who will stand behind your transaction.
We do understand that at the execution of the contract, you can request the title company of your choice, and it is important that before making that all important decision you select the best partner to protect your interest and your property.
Protecting your property title today and tomorrow is our mission.
What is Title Insurance?
Title Insurance is protection against loss arising from problems connected to the title to your property.
We strongly encourage you to seek legal counsel or other advisors who can explain all the potential issues and items unique to your particular transaction.
To view a video on the closing process:
Before you purchased your home, ownership probably changed – possibly many times. The land on which your house stands also went through many changes of ownership. At any point in the ‘chain of title’ there may be a weak link from fraud or error. Someone may have forged a signature. There might be unpaid real estate taxes or other liens. Title insurance covers the insured party against claims and legal fees that arise from such problems.
Step 1: Starting the Process
A sales contract is signed by the buyer and seller and delivered to the closing agent, usually with a deposit check. The escrow is accepted by the escrow agent, often by written notation on the contract. The escrow agent starts the closing process by opening a title order. The file begins to be processed. Tax information, loan payoffs, survey (if necessary), homeowner/maintenance fees, inspections/reports, and hazard and other insurances, as well as legal papers are ordered. A title search is ordered.
Step 2: Title Search and Examination
This is a search made of the public records. Records searched will disclose deeds, mortgages, paving assessments, liens, wills, divorce settlements and other documents affecting title to the property. Title examination is the examination of the documents found during the title search that affect the title to the property. This is when verification of the legal owner is made and the debts against the property are determined. Upon completion of the search and examination, a title commitment is prepared, reviewed and sent out to interested parties.
Step 3: Document Preparation and/or Request to Produce
The closing agent reviews the new lender’s instructions and requirements, reviews instructions from other parties to the transaction, reviews legal and loan documents, assembles charges, prepares closing statements, and schedules the closing.
Step 4: Settlement or Closing the Transaction
The settlement agent oversees closing of the transaction. The seller signs the deed and closing affidavit. The buyer signs the new note and mortgage. The old loan is paid off. The seller, real estate agents, attorneys and other parties who provided services related to the closing are paid.
Step 5: Post-closing
After the signing has been completed, the settlement agent will forward payment prior lender, and pay all parties who performed services in connection with your closing (if they have not been paid). The transaction documents are recorded in the county in which the property is located. Title insurance policies are prepared and sent to the new lender and to you. This all happens without any further actions by the buyer or seller.