While in the process of conducting a title search for a property, it's not uncommon for someone to come across potentially negative issues. Problems can range from the relatively mundane, such as typos, to serious questions, such as who has the title to the location.
American law recognizes that these issues happen. The system also prescribes a solution, and that process is called curing the title. Take a look at why you might need to cure a title and what the process is likely to entail.
When people buy or transfer properties, the ideal scenario is that the title will be clean. That means there won't be any outstanding problems with it. For a seller, a clean title generally means a higher sale price. Buyers rarely want to take on the added risk of an uncured title, and any that do accept the risks are likely to want a lower price for the deal.
Typically, buyers fall into two groups on this matter. Some want clean titles for peace of mind. Other people, however, buy properties with messy titles to save money, and then they may have a real estate law firm cure the title.
Why Do Defects Happen?
Defects occur when people make mistakes, changes aren't recorded, or seemingly accurate records prove to be off-target. Sometimes the geology of a region can alter due to sea levels changing or ground moving, especially in tectonically active areas.
A more modern source of defects is title fraud. Identify thieves may use information about a title to file for changes in the county register so they can subsequently leverage the property as collateral. This would allow them to fraudulently obtain a loan.
How to Cure a Title
Foremost, it's critical to prove that the defects of the title are curable. If there is a valid and current mortgage, for example, the lien against the property is almost certainly enforceable. That's likely the case even if you paid for the property from someone else.
Presuming the defects are just that; you can petition the county court to cure the title. In the petition, a real estate law firm can outline what the defects are and how the court can remedy them.
For example, someone would typically resolve an error involving a property's boundaries by providing the court with the relevant corrections. If there are conflicts with neighboring properties, a surveyor would visit them and gather data. After a judge approves them, the correct boundaries would then go into the county's property registry.
Contact a real estate law firm for more information.