Honest Abe Lost His Home—Twice

    Abraham Lincoln was born in a one-room cabin in Kentucky. His father paid $200 for the cabin and 300 acres. It wasn’t much, but it was home. However, the Lincolns didn’t have the right papers and someone else had a better claim to the land. At the age of three, Abe’s family packed up and moved. Four years later, Lincoln’s father had to go to court to prove ownership rights again. Abe’s father, Tom, won the suit, but moved his family to Indiana due to the fear of losing another property due to title issues.   The Lincoln’s
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How is a Title Search Conducted?

A professional will search public records for debts, legal judgments and other homeownership issues to give you peace of mind in your investment. Some of the items reviewed include: prior deeds mortgages divorce decrees court judgments delinquent taxes child support payments A title professional will also look for covenants, conditions and restrictions and other types of easements. When an issue is discovered, the title professional will take care of it—typically without you even knowing about it. If the problem is not easily resolved, you will be notified. Title searches reveal problems on more than a third of all residential real
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Real-Life Title Problem

You’ve heard that you really need title insurance, but sometimes it’s just head knowledge that doesn’t feel urgent or pertinent to your life.   If this sounds like you, read about these real-life examples of when title insurance was really a lifesaver.   Missouri Couple Saved from Foreclosure A couple purchased a home from their landlord, who had taken out a $419,000 loan to purchase the property along with several other properties. The lien was missed during the title search, so the lender paid the landlord instead of paying off the lien. Despite making their payments, the bank sent a
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5 Things Every Real Estate Agent Must Know About Title Insurance

Agents are well-aware that homebuyers can be overwhelmed by the paperwork, fees, and task lists facing them prior to closing.  It is critical that your clients do not overlook one key step in this flurry of activity: acquiring a buyer’s title insurance policy.   Title issues arise more often than buyers might think, and title insurance protects your clients against costly legal disputes over whether they have a free and clear ownership interest in their homes.  Given frequent client confusion on this issue, every real estate agent should know the following five things about title insurances.   1.     What is
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Why 20% of Homebuyers May Not Sleep Tonight

Each year, approximately 20% of homebuyers fail to protect themselves by not getting owner’s title insurance. Unfortunately, this leaves them exposed to serious financial risk—causing endless worry and regret. If you’re thinking of buying a home, here’s what you need to know to protect yourself and your property rights, so you can rest assured once you’ve purchased your home. Looking For Potential Threats   During the home-closing process, your title professional will help transition the home from the seller to you, the homebuyer, by examining public records. Generally, if a problem is discovered, the title professional works to resolve them
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Why You Must Have Title Insurance as a Homebuyer

Homebuyers often feel overwhelmed by the high number of tasks that must be completed prior to closing, but there’s one step in particular that homebuyers cannot afford to overlook:  securing title insurance.  Title issues arise more often that you might think, and title insurance protects you against costly legal disputes over whether you truly own your home, free and clear.    Why Do You Need Title Insurance?    Although even conscientious homebuyers may not immediately see the need for title insurance, unforeseeable issues may arise and result in an expensive legal challenge to your title:    You might buy your
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WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT SELLING YOUR HOUSE IN PENNSYLVANIA

Spoiler alert: you don’t need a realtor for this, which means you’ll save thousands of dollars. In today’s market, it is easier than ever to sell your house without a Realtor. An attorney can help you sell your home from the beginning of advertising your home to the end by recording the deed to transfer your home.  The pros of this are many: You save money, because you don’t have to pay the Realtor’s nearly 7% (in many cases) commission You have fewer people in the mix, which means less confusion You’ll have one point of contact throughout the ENTIRE
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What Must I Disclose When Selling Real Estate Property in Pennsylvania?

If you are selling real estate property in Pennsylvania, state law requires that you make certain disclosures to the buyer about the property before closing. The purpose of this disclosure is to aid the buyer in evaluating the property by informing them of any material defects that are not readily observable.      A material defect includes any problem that would have a significant adverse impact on the property’s value or create an unreasonable risk to people on the premises.     The State of Pennsylvania requires you to complete a disclosure statement when selling property with certain exceptions. If the property is being
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Re-Title Your Property to Create a Tenancy by the Entirety After Getting Married

It’s increasingly common for unmarried couples to purchase property together as joint tenants, as they cannot hold property as a tenancy by the entirety if they are unmarried. Compared to a more basic form of co-ownership—”tenants in common”—joint tenancy offers the benefit of right of survivorship. If one person passes away, the other automatically takes full ownership, without the need for the property to go through probate.    However, once a couple marries another form of joint-ownership becomes available to them: tenancy by the entirety. In most states, if a couple is married at the time they purchase property, the deed with automatically be held as
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How to Get the Best Deal on Title Insurance

Obtaining title insurance is an important part of buying a new home. Title companies conduct a title search to make sure there are no problems with the deed of the property.  They also insure your title to protect you in case problems are discovered later on.    The cost of title insurance is included in closing costs. Often times, when people are buying a new home, they automatically choose to use the title company that their real estate agent recommends—which could be quite expensive—without realizing that there are a few things they can do to get a better deal.      If you are buying a new home, consider the following suggestions
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