BUYING, SELLING OR REFINANCING?
Miami Real Estate Attorneys:
Residential Title and Closings
Here in Florida, almost all residential real estate sales will require a formal title search so that title insurance can be issued. All real estate transactions require a formal closing at which title passes from the seller to the buyer. There are many property rights and financial interests that can be jeopardized if these processes are not completed correctly. This is why it is important for both buyers and sellers to consult with a real estate attorney in order to protect their legal rights.
What is a Title Search, and Why Do I Need One?
A title search reveals any potential claims to the property being sold. Old debts, tax liens, and other encumbrances can prevent a seller from conveying clear title to the buyer. In this case, the title will not be insurable. Few – if any – lenders will issue a mortgage on a property that does not have an insurable title.
Many of these issues can be cleared up during the process so that clear title can be conveyed at the time of closing. For example: if the seller was awarded the house in a divorce, but the former spouse was not removed from the title, the former spouse might still have a claim to the property. By issuing a quitclaim deed to the seller, the former spouse’s interest is resolved, and the title can be insured. A real estate attorney can help you identify any title issues early and advise you on how best to resolve them so that you can close on the property.
What Happens at Closing?
At closing, the seller officially transfers all of his or her property rights to the buyer, in exchange for the buyer providing funds to meet the agreed-upon purchase price. Logistically, this usually occurs in two separate signings. First, the seller will sign a deed transferring the property to the buyer. Next, the buyer will sign lending documents that authorize the mortgage company to issue funds in the amount of the mortgage to the title company. Costa & Associates will then send these documents to the lender for approval. Once the lender approves, it will wire the mortgage funds to the firm. Costa & Associates then records the deed with the County Recorder and releases any remaining funds to the seller in accordance with the distributions on the final settlement statement.
As you can see, closing is a complicated process with many steps involving many different parties. There are many ways in which your legal rights can be impaired if the closing does not happen correctly. This is why it is important to have a real estate attorney review your final settlement statement, deed, and other closing documents before you sign them. An attorney can help you identify and resolve problems before they cost you money or impair your property rights.
Call Us Today to Speak with a Miami Real Estate Lawyer
At Costa and Associates, we have helped many Miami home buyers and sellers complete successful closings. Call (305) 827-0100 to schedule your free consultation with an experienced Miami real estate attorney.