New homeowners want to focus on buying new furniture for the living room or painting walls, not worrying about having to pay a bill left behind by a previous owner.
Lenders require a title insurance policy to protect their investment. You should have a policy to protect your investment as well. For a one-time fee paid at closing, an owner’s policy can protect your property rights for as long as you or your heirs own the property.
An owner’s policy protects you from:
- Unpaid mortgages
- Unpaid property taxes
- Child support liens
- Missing heirs who could claim the property belongs to him or her
- Missed easements or rights of way that could limit your use of the property
There are two types of title insurance policies. As mentioned, the owner’s policy protects the homebuyer. A loan policy protects the lender. Most lenders usually require a loan policy when they issue you a loan. The loan policy is based usually on the dollar amount of your loan. It only protects the lender’s interests in the property should a problem with the title arise. It does not protect the buyer. The policy amount decreases each year and eventually disappears as the loan is paid off. An owner’s policy, usually issued in the amount of the real estate purchase, provides protection for as long as you or your heirs have an interest in the property.