Title and Real Estate Expert Bryan Nazor Weighs In On Typical Kinds of Property Title Defects Home Owners Should Be Aware Of
What is a property title defect, how does it happen and how can you avoid it? If you are a home owner or looking into purchasing a home, this may be a question that has crossed your mind. It is common for home owners to not be aware of the ins and outs of property titles and what they do, said Bryan Nazor, a title and real estate closing expert in New Jersey.
According to Bryan Nazor, a property title defect, which can also be referred to as a “cloud”, is a threat to the property owner’s claim to a property. If the owner’s right to a particular property is uncertain, Bryan Nazor said it is essential for the problem to be cleared up before a property can transfer ownership. In other words, if you want to sell your property and there is a property title defect, you cannot sell the property until the issue is resolved.
How does a property title defect occur in the first place? One way is when there are unknown heirs of a property, according to Bryan Nazor. “In some cases, an heir of a previous property owner will come forward long after the previous owner has died,” Bryan Nazor said. “They have a will that states the property now rightfully belongs to them.” Even if the property has since been purchased by someone else, the heir coming forward with a will calls into question the property title and who is the rightful owner.
Another situation Bryan Nazor said is not uncommon is for an unknown lien to be on a property. In this case, a previous owner could be behind on their payments of a property. If there is a lien on the property, it may not become known until the property has been purchased by someone else, but the debt remains with the property.
A property title defect is sometimes just a mistake, Bryan Nazor added. Clerical errors are often easier to sort out than the aforementioned defects, but they do happen more than people might think. Human error accounts for plenty of cases of property title defects, Bryan Nazor said.
Because having a property title defect is complex and takes time and money to straighten out, it is always smart to purchase property title insurance, Bryan Nazor said. If your property has an unknown heir, a problem with forgery or a clerical error or has an unknown lien, title insurance is there to protect you. Those who are purchasing property should protect themselves against unknown and potential issues in the past of a property and get good title insurance, said Bryan Nazor