Warranty deeds may help protect a homebuyer in the event that previous ownership of a property is contested. It makes certain guarantees to buyers when the deed to a home is passed between buyer and seller.
A seller agrees that the property is in their sole possession and any additional claims on the land or home by either a lender or heir will become the responsibility of the seller, not the homebuyer.
Warranty deeds become particularly important when a buyer is purchasing a foreclosed home or a home that is being sold in a short sale. It outlines any encumbrances to the land, and a seller agrees to cover any financial expenses incurred by the buyer as a result of holds on the land that were not elaborated upon in the deed.
Because debts attach themselves to the land as well as the debtor, and current homeowners may be responsible for defaulted mortgages for the two individuals that owned a home before them, warranty deeds can help to make a sale more secure.
Once a warranty deed has been drawn up, homebuyers and their representatives should conduct a title search on the property going back at least 30 years to ensure that the information put forth in the deed is accurate and that the land does not have any encumbrances that have not been discussed.
Unlike a quick claim deed, a warranty deed protects homebuyers against any information that was not included in the title when the transfer of property occurred. This would include claims by relatives or former spouses and liens by mortgage lenders and other financial institutions.
When a buyer gets a warranty deed, the burden of financial responsibility falls on the previous owner, thus sparing consumers the responsibility of settling debts on their land incurred by previous owners.
The title search will compile data about a home which will include liens, judgments, property transfers and other property records. This information should uncover any liens on the land as well as any additional owners that were not previously discussed.
Typically, real estate professionals will need to visit various city and state run offices to gather this information. But with CRS Data's tools, doing a title search can be as easy as turning on a computer, as all of a home's prior records will be available at one's fingertips.
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DONNA ROACH - Knoxville Area Association of Realtors MLS