FAQs

1. What is the role of a title company?
2. What types of issues can a title search reveal?
3. Are there any types of issues that a title search does not reveal?
4. What is title insurance?
5. Why do I need title insurance?
6. If I am required to purchase title insurance for my lender, why do I need it as well?
7. How does title insurance protect my investment should a claim arise?
8. How long does my coverage last?


1. What is the role of a title company?

The job of a title company begins well before settlement. RETE begins with a thorough examination of land records (title search) and court records. We identify and resolve any potential problems in the transaction and clear any judgments and/or liens against the property or parties prior to closing. In the meantime, RETE coordinates all information necessary for closing. This includes communicating with lenders, real estate agents, the buyer/borrower and the seller, the County and the State, along with any Homeowner’s Association or Condominium Association.

At settlement, RETE serves as escrow agent for the transaction. We collect funds, assure the money is disbursed in accordance with the parties’ written instructions, and record any and all legal instruments to ensure that title to the property is properly conveyed.

After settlement, we follow up to confirm that all liens or potential liens that were satisfied at closing are released. Finally, RETE issues insurance policies to the Buyer (in a purchase transaction) and/or the Lender.
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2. What types of issues can a title search reveal?

A title search can show a number of title defects and liens, as well as other encumbrances and restrictions. Among these are unpaid taxes, unsatisfied mortgages, judgments against the current or prior owner, and restrictions limiting the use of the land.
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3. Are there any types of issues that a title search does not reveal?

Yes. There are some "hidden hazards" that the most diligent title searches may never reveal. For instance, the previous owners may not have revealed that they were divorced, resulting in possible claims by judgment creditors. Other "hidden hazards" include fraud and forgery, defective deeds, claims against the property, mental incompetence, confusion due to similar or identical names and clerical errors in the courthouse records. These defects can arise after you have purchased your home and can jeopardize your right of ownership to the property.
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4. What is Title Insurance?

Title insurance is an insurance policy that protects the insured against loss should any of the issues discussed above result in a claim against your ownership. Unlike other types of insurance that offer protection against future possible occurrences, title insurance offers protection against past occurrences which could result in a claim at a future date. Coverage continues in effect for so long as you have an interest in the covered property. If you should die, the coverage automatically continues for the benefit of your heirs. If you sell your property, giving warranties of title to your buyer, your coverage continues. Likewise, if a buyer gives you a mortgage to finance a purchase of covered property from you, your coverage continues to protect your security interest in the property. Title insurance provides the insured with "peace of mind" in knowing that you are receiving good and marketable title to the real estate you are purchasing.
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5. Why do I need Title Insurance?

When you buy a home, or any property for that matter, you expect to enjoy certain benefits from ownership...to be able to occupy and use the property as you wish, to be free from debts or obligations not created or agreed to by you, and to be able to freely sell or pledge your property as security for a loan. Title insurance is designed to protect these rights. Without an owner's title insurance policy, you may not be fully protected against errors in the public records or hidden defects not disclosed by the public records. As a result, you may be held fully accountable for any liens, judgments or claims brought against your new property. However, your owner's title policy insures that if such an occasion arises, you will be defended, free of charge against all covered claims and paid up to the amount of the policy to settle valid claims.
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6. If I am required to purchase Title Insurance for my Lender, why do I need it as well?

In almost every instance, a lender will require you to purchase lender's title insurance protecting it up to the value of its loan on the property. This coverage only protects the lender, not you, and the coverage diminishes as the loan is paid off. As you build more equity in the property, you expose yourself to a higher risk of loss occasioned by a title defect. In this situation the protected lender will suffer no loss while you as the owner of record bear the substantial risk of the damage. Owner’s title insurance will protect you against any covered loss from failure of title up to the full amount of the policy. Moreover, we offer certain policies that, at no extra cost, include automatic inflation protection, meaning that the face amount of title insurance policy increases by 10% per year for the 1st five years.
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7. How does title insurance protect my investment should a claim arise?

If a claim is made against your property, title insurance will, in accordance with the terms of your policy, assure you of a legal defense - plus pay all court costs and related fees. Also, if the claim proves valid, you will be reimbursed for your actual loss up to the face amount of your policy.
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8. How long does my coverage last?

For as long as you or your heirs retain an interest in the property, and in some cases, even beyond.
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