What is a Property Title Search?
A property title search is the process of gathering documents that show who has the legal right to own the property in question and, through that ownership, to sell it. While it may seem simple and obvious that the home seller is the owner, there may be hidden claims or liens on the property by other parties that the seller and buyer may be completely unaware of. To avoid any last minute surprises and guarantee that the buyer becomes the sole owner of the property, a property title search is critical to ensuring any property transaction goes smoothly for all parties.
Who Pays for the Property Title Search?
The party that pays for a title search is not necessarily set in stone. The buyer of a home traditionally pays for a search, but if your housing market is in particularly bad shape, you might be able to convince the seller to pay up for a search themselves. Most will be reluctant to do so, but depending on your circumstances, you just might be able to save a few hundred dollars by negotiating a property title search into the sale agreement. In general your lender will only require that a new title search be conducted on property, and they will rarely be adamant about who must conduct it.
Title Insurance Following a Property Title Search
Once a property title is considered legitimate, the title company will then issue title insurance. This insurance protects both property owners and lenders against losing the property due to defects such as liens, encumbrances or errors as well as covering the costs of defending against future, unforeseen claims on the property.
Buying a home is usually the single largest investment most people make in their lifetime. Protecting that investment from issues of ownership and other hidden title defects is a smart added layer of security for any buyer.
Who Pays for Title Insurance?
Just like the property title search, title insurance is generally purchased by the home buyer, and it will protect you from anything that may have been missed in the property title search. Property title searches tend to be thorough in turning up the history of a home, but there are instances where things can slip through the cracks. If you are negotiating for the property title search to be paid for by the seller, you may also be able to have the title insurance included as well. Again, this is all dependent on your bargaining position when looking to purchase a home.
Most companies that offer property title searches also provide title insurance, so you won’t have to deal with multiple companies and they will typically go hand in hand.
Experts in New Jersey Property Title Search Services
At Scott Title, we have been conducting rigorous, thorough and accurate New Jersey property title searches for more than 20 years. Our experienced title search agents take care to ensure all the necessary information and correct documentation is accounted for in each title search we handle. From our office in Red Bank, our team has managed title searches for clients in Monmouth, Ocean, and Middlesex counties, and throughout the rest of New Jersey, simplifying what would be an overwhelming process for our clients and dealing with potential problems before they can cause serious issues. Our in-depth research sets us apart from others in our industry.