Title is your right to own or use your property. Title also establishes any limitations on those rights.
In Maryland, when more than one person will have an interest in the property, Title can be held by the parties in one of the following three ways:
In this type of co-tenancy, each party owns their share of the property as an individual with no right of survivorship. Therefore, if one co-tenant dies, his interest passes to his heirs. In this type of tenancy, two or more co-tenants can hold title in unequal shares (e.g. 60/40, 90/10 etc.). In Maryland, title is presumed to be held as tenants in common unless the owners are married or unless it is specified that the parties will hold as Joint Tenants with Rights of Survivorship.
This is a form of concurrent ownership which can be held only by a married couple. There is a presumption in Maryland that property held by husband and wife is held as tenants by the entireties, even if it is not specified. In Tenants by Entireties, there is a right of survivorship but the owners cannot individually convey or partition their individual interests. Property held as Tenants by the Entireties is immune from creditors of one spouse (except for Fed Tax liens). A Tenancy by the Entirety is destroyed and converted to tenants in common upon the divorce of the parties.
Joint Tenancy is a co-tenancy that includes rights of survivorship for non-married individuals. However, in Maryland, there is a presumption against Joint Tenancy. Therefore, the intention to create a joint tenancy must be explicit, e.g. the deed should state “as joint tenants with rights of survivorship”.
Title insurance plays a major role in making certain home ownership is safe and secure by providing protection against loss due to any defect in title. A reputable title agent offers reliable purchasing information, insight into historic matters of importance, and the security of a state licensed and regulated company.
Unlike most material purchases, paying money for real estate and receiving a deed to property does not assure the buyer of a free and clear title. According to real property laws, once settlement is final, the buyer is financially responsible for any valid claims made against his/her property. This means that any unsettled matters involving the property and past owners become the current owner's problem. For example, the property title may have been transferred by a minor or someone who was legally incompetent. The possibilities are endless. However, title insurance assures you that your investment is secure.
One of the title company's main functions is to conduct a thorough title search of the property, which is a review of all matters affecting the state of ownership. The search also reveals tax information, right of ways for power companies, and any unsatisfied liens or claims against the property. However, sometimes the most careful investigation fails to disclose title defects. For this reason, buyers purchase title insurance to protect themselves and their mortgage company. Title insurance is actually a package of two separate policies, one covering the buyer and the other covering the lender.
In most states, the title insurance premium is a rate that each title underwriter must have approved by the state Insurance Department. Generally, the rates are the same or very similar between companies. And although the premium is paid only once, at settlement, title insurance continuously protects the owner or his/her heirs as long as they own the property. There are no annual renewal payments needed to keep your policy in force. Please reach out to us for a title insurance rate quote.
As an agent for Conestoga Title Insurance Co., we do everything you would expect of a capable title company. We search the title, complete the paperwork accurately and on time, issue title commitments and insurance policies promptly, and conduct settlements at the convenience of the parties. We also provide notary and escrow services wherever needed, along with all the other niceties that take the hassle out of the closing.
We focus on building lasting relationships with professional credibility and integrity Our agency has the experience and personalized service you can depend on. We're local people making local decisions, just like you. And we'll work hard to earn and keep your confidence.
Call don’t email: Confirm your wiring instructions by phone using a known number before transferring funds. Don’t use phone numbers or links from an email.
Be suspicious: It’s uncommon for title companies to change wiring instructions and payment info by email.
Forward, don’t reply: When responding to an email, hit forward instead of reply and then start typing in the person’s email address. Criminals use email address that are very similar to the real one for a company. By typing in email addresses, you will make it easier to discover if a fraudster is after you.
Confirm everything: Ask your bank to confirm the name on the account before sending a wire.
Verify immediately: Call the title company or real estate agent to validate that the funds were received. The sooner it is detected that money has been sent to a wrong account, the better chance you have of recovering the money.
Anyone who is signing in any capacity needs to be present at closing and have a valid government issued ID with a photo for verification purposes. If you need to bring funds to closing and the amount to bring is under $10,000 then make sure you have those funds in the form of a certified check. Anything over $10,000 needs to be wired the day before closing. If you are receiving funds at closing and would prefer a wire then you will need to bring your banking information with you. If anything else is needed, you will be notified by one of our team members prior to closing.