The Title Search
The people who do title searches have an extremely important job. They must ensure that the sellers really own the property being sold and that all liens against the property are being paid off as a result of the sale.
If the seller has had financial difficulties, for instance, and didn’t pay his bills, there may be judgments that must be satisfied on or before the closing. Someone in addition to the party who signed the sales agreement may have an interest in the property. If so, it will be necessary for that person to sign the sales agreement and the deed that transfers ownership to the new buyer. The preliminary title report will also show any easements that run with the property. The Title Company will go back many years, examining what is called the “chain of title”. If you learn that the property you are buying has title problems, don’t panic. Most of them are resolved easily and in plenty of time to avoid delays in the closing.