What is A Title Search?


When you have decided to take the plunge and buy a property, there are a few quintessential steps that must be taken to make sure that the sale goes through without a hitch. One of the most important steps is a title search.  A title search is an in-depth probe through the public records to ensure there are no issues regarding ownership rights. Thankfully the title company, a third party whose job it is to make sure that there are no title issues prior to the purchase of the property, conducts this task for you.


What Do They Search For?

When a title company does a title search, they are looking through many records regarding the property including liens, taxes, deeds, mortgages, marriage records, local municipality assessments, and court records. All of these records could impact the title of the home. The title company wants to make sure the seller has full ownership right of the property, and the rights to sell the property. Further, when the property is transferred to the buyer, they want to make sure the buyer is receiving the title free and clear from any encumbrances, or “clouds” on title.  If they find anything in the title search that would indicate the contrary, they would inform the parties involved upon discovery.


What Happens Next?

If the title search comes back and there appears to be problems with the title, those issues must be resolved with the appropriate parties before closing. If the title comes back clear and indicates no issues, then the closing can move forward.


However, records are not always accurate and no system is perfect. For this reason, the title company also offers title insurance. For a one time premium, this insurance protects buyers from certain title “defects” which may have been missing from the title search. Your title company is there to help with some of the complicated title issues regarding the purchase of your property, and with their help you can rest easy knowing your asset is protected with title insurance!