What is Title Insurance?
Buying a home is, for many of us, the biggest single investment we'll ever make.
Knowing this, most homeowners provide for the security and safekeeping of their homes by insuring them against hazards such as fire, theft and weather damage. There is another hazard that can pose an even greater risk to home ownership: Defects in the title to your property can cause you to lose part or all of the investment in your home. Fortunately, there is a way to protect your investment from these title defects. It comes in the form of title insurance.
When you buy a home, you want to be certain it's safely yours. But even the most diligent search of the public records could fail to disclose a number of title defects. Things such as a forged will or deed. Or a title transfer by someone under age. Or a married person conveying real estate without his or her spouse. Or fraudulent impersonations, secret marriages, undisclosed heirs, invalid divorces and false affidavits are just a few of the problems that can suddenly surface. Without the protection of the title insurance, you'll be in jeopardy of losing your investment.
For lenders, title insurance offers financial protection, which makes loans more negotiable in the secondary market and allows lenders greater flexibility in upgrading their portfolios. For home buyers and commercial investors, title insurance provides peace of mind, the assurance that their investments are protected for as long as they or their heirs retain an interest in the property.
What can I expect as a Seller?
When opening an escrow order, a letter requesting information is sent to the seller for details regarding the property. Once this letter is sent back. the closing agent starts the closing process based upon the information you provided. Once all parties are ready to close the transaction, the Real Estate Agent or Closing Agent calls and makes appointments for signing of the documents and Settlement Statements. When everything has been signed, moneys are received from the buyer and lender (if one is involved), authorization to record takes place. Documents are sent to the Court House for recording. Disbursement of funds occurs after recording. If closing is in the afternoon, recording and disbursement may not happen until the next business day. Proceeds to the seller can either be picked up, mailed or wired and/or deposited to a bank of seller choice.
What can I expect as a buyer?
When opening an escrow order, information is gathered by the Closing Agent regarding buyers names, forwarding addresses, phone numbers and lender information. When all parties are ready to close, the Real Estate Agent or Closing Agent will contact the buyers for an appointment to sign documents. The Closing Agent will okay the documents for signing and answer any questions the buyer might have. Upon signing and the receipt of all funds, deed and loan documents are sent for recording. Acceptable forms of payment to close are: cashiers check, check from a local bank ( with verified funds) or wired funds. Money market checks will delay the recording and disbursing of a closing. They have to clear our bank and payees bank, before we can record. Once recording has taken place and ownership has been transferred, all moneys are disbursed and the transaction is complete.
What can I expect when I Refinance?
When you refinance your property, the lender will call and open an escrow order. When the lender and borrower are ready to close the refinance, they set up an appointment for the signing for loan documents. At signing the Closing Agent will go over all documents and answer any questions. Documents are then notarized and sent back to the lender for review. When refinancing your property, there is a rescission period of three business days during which you may cancel the transaction. Once the rescission period has expired and we have confirmation from the lender that the loan has been funded, recording of the documents occurs. Money is disbursed and the transaction is complete.
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