If my title search comes up clean, do I still need title insurance?
The home buying process is full of anticipation. There’s the anxiousness prior to your offer being accepted, holding your breath that the inspection doesn’t turn up any major problems, and the hope that the title search comes back clear, paving the path for a smooth closing process. Many home buyers assume that closing is the final hurdle to overcome, but that isn’t always the case. Sometimes, a “clean” title isn’t so clean, and you only find out after closing. If your title search comes up clean, do you still need title insurance?
A title search can uncover issues with a property’s title such as remaining liens or challenges to legal ownership (and therefore who can legally sell you the property). If an issue with the title comes up before closing, it is the seller’s responsibility to rectify the problem in order to transfer the title. But sometimes, the title search doesn’t uncover everything, leaving the buyer responsible for either a costly fix or lengthy legal battle to prove legal ownership.
Title insurance protects you from financial obligation should there be any issues with the title of your new property. Typically purchased during the closing process, title insurance is a one-time premium that guarantees title problems won’t surprise you in the future. If a title defect arises after closing, such as a filing error or uncovered judgment on the property, title insurance will cover the cost to clear the title.
Still, how necessary is title insurance if the initial title search comes up clean? It’s easy to think that a clear title search means title problems aren’t in your future. It’s also understandable that with all the costs of closing, one more fee can feel like a burden. The catch is that title searches are not foolproof. Title insurance provides peace of mind in the event that something was missed. By purchasing title insurance, you can be confident that you’re protected from any surprises.
While not always legally required, title insurance is generally a mandatory condition of financing your home purchase through a lender. Unlike other insurance premiums though, title insurance is a one-time payment that will cover you for as long as you own the property. Also, in many counties in Florida, it is customary for the seller to cover the premium payment.
Although a clean title is a good sign, it’s not an iron-clad guarantee that you’re protected from issues with the title of your new property. Title insurance can provide you with peace of mind. Interested in learning more about title insurance? Ready to get a quote? Call Clear Title to get started.
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