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Title Service FAQ

Title Insurance

Why do I need title insurance?

Title insurance protects the homeowner and the lender from any claim against the ownership of the property. Basically, it’s insurance that the seller is the proper and rightful owner, and has right to sell the property. 

Who would have a claim against the property?

Anyone that had an ownership stake in the property and did not properly transfer title to the next owner would have a claim against the title of the property. For instance, if a home was left to siblings after a death, and only one sibling signed off on the sale, the other sibling may have a claim to half ownership. 

What happens in a title dispute?

The court will determine whether the title defect is enough to revert ownership to the party bringing the challenge.  If so, it can result in complete loss of ownership to the current owner and lender, which is why title insurance is so important. 


Where should I have my closing?

You can request your closing at any facility you like. Your real estate agent will likely suggest hosting the closing at his/her office, at the lending bank if a mortgage is involved, or at the title company.  Any of these options is perfectly fine, or you can choose a facility that is more convenient for you.  We’ll go wherever you need us, as title and closing does not have to happen in any particular location. 

Who is at a closing?

All parties involved in the transaction will be present. Typically, that includes the buyer, seller, lending institution, and title insurance representative.  Most title insurance reps are also able to handle closing and escrow, but the closing agent and escrow agent could be different in some circumstances. 

What is a split closing?

If the buyer and seller are not able to meet at the same time/place, a split closing is used.  We will meet with the buyer and seller at different times or places, and then complete the transfer when all parties have completed their obligations.  This is fairly common.  


What is escrow?

Escrow is how the parties transfer title and payment without risk of loss. The closing company will provide escrow services to hold deposits, down payments, good faith monies, or any other payments against the title, then distribute the money to the seller at the time of closing.  This reduces risk of loss by paying the seller directly prior to the transfer of title. 

How do I know my money is safe?

Title and closing companies are highly regulated, and must provide accounting audits to the state at any time.  Special IOTA bank accounts are used for escrow, and all money is protected by a surety bond, professional malpractice insurance, or E&O insurance. 

When does escrow close?

The term “closing” on a home comes from the close of escrow services that nearly always accompanies a home purchase. Escrow closes at the time of transfer, so seller and buyer receive all funds that they are owed at the closing.  

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