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Watson, McMillin and Street, LLP

At Marathon Title Company, we want to answer your questions and ensure your experience is quick and easy.

WHAT ARE THE BASIC STEPS IN A CLOSING 

  1. Obtain a Title Request from the purchaser or lender, along with a copy of the Purchase Agreement. 
  2. Contact all parties involved in the transaction to obtain non-public information. 
  3. Order the abstract report from the abstractor. The abstract report will provide a title history to the property. 
  4. Once the abstract has been reviewed, if no title curative measures are required, we are ready to move forward with the closing. At this time, we will contact all parties involved to coordinate a closing date and time. 
  5. Depending on the type of transaction, we will prepare a Cash Deed, Closing Disclosure or Settlement Statement, along with any other related documents. We strive to provide all parties with a copy of the documents for their review at least 24 hours prior to closing. 
  6. At the closing table the closer and/or attorney will be present to explain all closing documents to the appropriate parties and notarize all signatures. 
  7. Once the closing is complete, we will ensure the necessary documents are recorded with the appropriate clerk of court ( usually the Cash Deed and Mortgage) and disburse the closing proceeds to the appropriate parties as shown on the Closing Disclosure or Settlement Statement. 
  8. Once the necessary documents have been recorded, we will forward a copy of the recorded documents to the appropriate parties, along with a copy of the Closing Disclosure or Settlement Statement. 

 

WHAT IS HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION

The homestead exemption is a tax exemption on the first $75,000.00 of the value of a person's primary residence. The value is exempt from parish property taxes.

 

HOW TO OBTAIN HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION

After the loan closing, you will receive a copy of the recorded Cash Deed. You will need to take a copy of the recorded Cash Deed to the Tax Assessor's Office to file for homestead exemption.

 

WHAT IS TITLE INSURANCE AND WHY DO I NEED IT

Title insurance is used to protect the investment made in a property when ownership is challenged. Even the most skilled title professionals may not find all title problems. There are many title issues that could cause you to lose your property, such as the following:

  1. Forged deeds, mortgages, satisfactions or releases.
  2. Deed by person who is insane or mentally incompetent.
  3. Deed by minor.
  4. Deed from corporation, unauthorized under corporate bylaws or given under falsified corporate resolution.
  5. Deed from partnership, unauthorized partnership agreement.
  6. Deed from purported trustee, unauthorized under trust agreement.
  7. Deed to or from a "corporation" before incorporation, or after loss of corporate charter.
  8. Deed from a legal non-entity (styled, for example, as a church, charity or club);
  9. Deed by person in a foreign country, vulnerable to challenge as incompetent, unauthorized or defective under foreign laws.
  10. Claims resulting from the use of "alias" or fictitious name style by a predecessor in title.
  11. Deed challenged as being given under fraud, undue influence or duress.
  12. Deed following non-judicial foreclosure, where requested procedure was not followed.
  13. Deed affecting land in judicial proceedings (bankruptcy, receivership, probate, conservatorship, dissolution of marriage), unauthorized by the court.
  14. Deed following judicial proceedings, subject to appeal or further court order.
  15. Deed following judicial proceedings, where all necessary parties were not joined.
  16. Lack of jurisdiction over persons or property in judicial proceedings.
  17. Deed signed by mistake (grantor did not know what they signed).
  18. Deed executed under falsified power of attorney.
  19. Deed executed under expired power of attorney ( death, disability or insanity of principal).
  20. Deed apparently valid, but actually delivered after death of grantor or grantee, or without consent of the grantor.
  21. Deed affecting property purported to be separate property of grantor, which is in fact community or jointly-owned property.
  22. Undisclosed divorce of one who conveys as sole heir of a deceased former spouse.
  23. Deed affecting property of deceased person, not joining all heirs.
  24. Deed following administration of estate of missing person, who later re-appears.
  25. Conveyance by heir or survivor of a joint estate, who murdered the decedent.
  26. Conveyances and proceedings affecting rights of service-member protected by the Soldiers and Sailors Civil Relief Act.
  27. Conveyance void as in violation of public policy (payment of gambling debt, payment for contract to commit crime, or conveyance made in restraint of trade.)
  28. Deed to land including "wetlands" subject to public trust (vesting title in government to protect public interest in navigation, commerce, fishing and recreation.).
  29. Deed from government entity, vulnerable to challenge as unauthorized or unlawful.
  30. Ineffective release of prior satisfied mortgage due to acquisition of note by bona fide purchaser (without notice of satisfaction).
  31. Ineffective release of prior satisfied mortgage due to bankruptcy of creditor prior to recording ofrelease (avoiding powers in bankruptcy).
  32. Ineffective release of prior mortgage or lien, as fraudulently obtained by predecessor in title.
  33. Disputed release of prior mortgage or lien, as given under mistake or misunderstanding.
  34. Ineffective subordination agreement, causing junior interest to be reinstated to priority.
  35. Deed recorded, but not properly indexed so as to be locatable in the land records.
  36. Undisclosed but recorded federal or state tax lien.
  37. Undisclosed but recorded judgment or spousal/child support lien.
  38. Undisclosed but recorded prior mortgage.
  39. Undisclosed but recorded notice of pending lawsuit affecting land.
  40. Undisclosed but recorded environmental lien.
  41. Undisclosed but recorded option, or right of first refusal, to purchase property.
  42. Undisclosed but recorded covenants or restrictions, with (or without) rights of reverter.
  43. Undisclosed but recorded easements (for access, utilities, drainage, airspace, views) benefiting neighboring land.
  44. Undisclosed but recorded boundary, party wall or setback agreements.
  45. Errors in tax records (mailing tax bill to wrong party resulting in tax sale, or crediting payment to wrong property).
  46. Erroneous release of tax or assessment liens, which are later reinstated to the tax rolls.
  47. Erroneous reports furnished by tax officials (not binding local government).
  48. Special assessments which become liens upon passage of a law or ordinance, but before recorded notice of commencement of improvements for which assessment is made.
  49. Adverse claim of vendor's lien.
  50. Adverse claim of equitable lien.
  51. Ambiguous covenants or restrictions in ancient documents.
  52. Misinterpretation of wills, deeds and other instruments.
  53. Discovery of will of supposed intestate individual, after probate.
  54. Discovery of later will after probate of first will.
  55. Erroneous or inadequate legal descriptions.
  56. Deed to land without a right of access to a public street or road.
  57. Deed to land with legal access subject to undisclosed but recorded conditions or restrictions.
  58. Right of access wiped out by foreclosure on neighboring land.
  59. Patent defects in recorded instruments (for example, failure to attach notarial acknowledgment or a legal description).
  60. Defective acknowledgment due to lack of authority of notary (acknowledgment taken before commission or after expiration of commission).
  61. Forged notarization or witness acknowledgment.
  62. Deed not properly recorded (wrong parish, missing pages or other contents, or without required payment).
  63. Deed from grantor who is claimed to have acquired the title through fraud upon creditors of a prior owner. In certain instances, an extended coverage policy may be requested to protect against such additional defects as:
    • Deed to a purchaser from one who has previously sold or leased the same land to a third party under an unrecorded contract, where the third party is in possession of the premises.
    • Claimed prescriptive rights, not of record and not disclosed by survey.
    • Physical location of easement (underground pipe or sewer line) which does not conform with easement of record.
    • Deed to land with improvements encroaching upon land of another. Incorrect survey (misstating location, dimensions, area, easements or improvements upon land).
    • "Mechanics' lien" claims (securing payment of contractors and material suppliers for improvements) which may attach without recorded notice.
    • Federal estate or state inheritance tax liens (may attach without recorded notice).
    • Pre-existing violation of subdivision mapping laws.
    • Pre-existing violation of conditions, covenants and restrictions affecting the land.
    • Pre-existing violation of zoning ordinances.
    • Post-policy forgery against the insured interest.
    • Forced removal of residential improvements due to lack of an appropriate building permit (subject to deductible).
    • Post-policy construction of improvements by a neighbor onto insured land.
    • Damage to residential structures from use of the surface of insured land for extraction or development of minerals.

Without title insurance from a reputable and financially secure company, your title could be worthless. With the proper insurance, your rights will be defended in court.

 

TYPES OF TITLE INSURANCE POLICIES

There are two types of title insurance: an Owner's Title Policy and a Lender's Title Policy.

OWNER'S POLICY

As a buyer, you want to protect your investment and the ownership rights that come with it. An owner's policy of title insurance will protect your rights as the homeowner for as long as you have an interest in the property.

LENDER'S POLICY

If you are working with a lender to purchase a home or refinance an existing mortgage, purchasing title insurance is a lender requirement. This policy protects the bank or other lending institutions for as long as they maintain a security interest in the property. A lender's title policy does not provide title insurance to the property owner.

 

WHAT IS THE PREMIUM FOR AN OWNER'S OR LENDER'S POLICY

You will pay a one-time premium for both the owner's and lender's policy at the close of your transaction. The premium for an owner's policy is based on the purchase price and the lender's premium is based on the loan amount. If an owner's and lender's policy are purchased simultaneously the lender's policy premium is discounted.

Marathon Title Company

As a full service agency, Marathon Title offers complete real estate title services from a basic title search and report to a fully insured closing. As an agent of First American Title Insurance Company, we have the expertise and ability to provide the most comprehensive title insurance coverage available in the industry. Contact Sandra Dement for your title needs.

(318) 322-9700

info@wmhllp.com | 1881 Hudson Circle, Monroe, Louisiana 71201

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