It’s estimated that nearly thirty-six percent of Americans plan to purchase a home within the next five years. That percentage has increased dramatically in the last decade due to the reduction in mortgage rates and a healthier economy. If you’re in the market, you know that the purchasing process begins well before receiving the keys. On top of saving enough for the down payment, you’ve probably already begun comparing rates and scanning listings. Along with those items that are already on your home-buying checklist, it’s important to find home title protection. This seemingly small item could end up preventing you from becoming the victim of fraud.
What Is Title Protection?
You protect yourself and your vehicle when you purchase auto insurance. You protect the health of your family when you purchase medical insurance. Why wouldn’t you do the same when you transfer a title into your name? Title protection is specifically designed to protect both you, as the purchaser of a property, and your mortgage lender from any title fraud or claims against the title of the property you’re purchasing. In layman’s terms, it keeps you and your mortgage provider from being held responsible should any problems arise with the title.
Who Needs Title Protection?
You need title protection anytime you are transferring a title to your name. Whether you’re looking to purchase property, a building, or a new home, it’s beneficial to purchase protection. It doesn’t matter how seamless the transaction may seem; title protection gives you peace of mind that no one will dispute the ownership of the title in the future. It protects you and your investment.
Even if you’ve owned your home for years, title protection is still important. Thieves can still steal your title from you or cause major issues if you don’t have the proper security in place. Any time you have a title in your name, whether recent or in the past, consider investing in title protection as soon as possible.
Common Title Claims
Typically, when you purchase insurance, you’re buying it in case of a catastrophic future event. Title protection doesn’t work that way. It protects against past events as well as future events. For example, if an error was committed in the public record and your lot was subdivided incorrectly or if there was a lien placed on the title previously, the integrity of the title is compromised. In order to transfer the title, you’d be subject to the legal fees needed to clear those liens or to have the lot lines recorded properly. Title protection ensures that you aren’t dealing with any of those issues, past or future.
More often than not, fraud and theft are the reasons behind title claims. In some cases, thieves will unlawfully transfer the title of ownership of properties into their names. This makes it extremely difficult for homeowners. It can cost thousands of dollars in legal fees and a myriad of other problems. Whether it’s a fraud, omitted heirs, or other issues, you don’t want to be stuck holding the bill if title claims arise.
Is Title Protection Necessary?
To put things plainly, title protection is absolutely necessary. In fact, many mortgage lenders refuse to lend unless title protection is in place. Not only does it protect you, but it also protects them. It’s their way of ensuring that things go smoothly, and there are no surprises. With title protection, there’s no reason to worry about any claims against the validity or legality of the title throughout the process. Securing title protection also ensures to your lender that you’re interested in the property and that they aren’t wasting their time. It allows both parties to work in confidence, knowing that they’re protected.
What’s the Cost of Title Protection?
Don’t worry; title protection isn’t an on-going fee. Unlike so many other policies, your title protection isn’t a recurring payment. Instead, it’s a one-time payment that offers you protection throughout your mortgage. While it’s difficult to say what your payment will be, you can expect it to be based on the price and location of your home. It’s typically less expensive for lender title protection than it is for homeowner title protection. No matter what the cost may be, you can bet that it will be quite a bit less than the legal fees you could face should a title claim arise in the future.
When Should You Purchase Title Protection?
Title protection should be purchased soon after an offer on a home or property is accepted. Having it in place by your closing date ensures an easy transfer of the title from the previous owner to you. While it is recommended that you purchase the protection before you close on your new investment, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you can’t invest after the fact. Title protection can be purchased after your closing date. However, should an issue arise during the time where there was a lapse in coverage between owners, the claim may not be covered by your new policy. For that reason, timing is key.
Title fraud prevention is simple with the right policy. Whether you’re in the beginning stages of the home-buying process or you’re just starting to think about a new home, now is the time to look into home title protection. Secure Title Lock is dedicated to keeping you and your home safe. With over 65 percent of title claims being fraud-related, it’s more important than ever to cover your assets. Each of our title protection policies includes monthly monitoring, fraud resolution, consultation, education, and, most of all—peace of mind. Rest easy knowing that your title is being watched over and that your investment is safe with the help of the experts at Secure Title Lock.