The process of buying and selling real estate can be confusing. If you one of the multitude of first time home buyers who have never bought or sold real estate before, you may find yourself discovering title insurance well after your journey has already begun adding to the confusion and chaos. We are here to help home buyers and sellers understand title insurance in the State of Virginia and how it helps protect life’s most valuable asset – your home.
What is a Title Insurance Company and what do they do?
The best way to describe a title insurance company is to consider it home base for all things regarding your real estate transaction. Your title insurance company will be the central processing unit for your transaction ensuring that all terms of the contract are met prior to completing the successful sale of your property. In addition to reviewing the terms of the contract, your title insurance company will conduct a through search of the history of your property. This Property Deed Search, or Abstract, will verify the chain of custody of your property and the seller’s right to transfer ownership of that property to the buyer.
Once all terms have been met, the property has been verified to be in good standing for sale, and money has been transferred into escrow, we will conduct your closing facilitating the transfer of money to the appropriate parties while handling the processing of your documents and final exchange of keys.
If my Title Company verifies the deed history, why do I need Title Insurance?
Property records are unfortunately not an exact science. They are maintained county by county with method and completeness varying from location to location. Factors such as time, fraud, or even an overlooked surviving family member of a decease previous owner can have a profound affect on your ability to call your new home yours if you do not have title insurance.
This is why, if you seek a mortgage on your property, we will issue a Lenders Policy. This policy does not cover your interest in the property, but rather protects your mortgage against potential claims to the property that may arise in the future. Though rare, lenders take no risk that their investment could be jeopardized. Lenders will always acquire a Lenders Policy when issuing a mortgage against a property.
Like the Lenders Policy, you too may purchase an Owners Policy to protect your investment. Owners Policies will dispute and pay out any potential claims to your property due to title defects and covers your ownership interest as well as the ownership claims of your heirs. An Owners Policy is a one time fee due at closing that offers a lifetime of peace of mind protecting you and your family against a potential total loss of your right to own your home.
Title Insurance is a cornerstone of confident home ownership in America. If you have questions regarding title insurance or the real estate closing process, please do not hesitate to contact us. A member of our experienced team will be happy to assist.