Title Insurance

Why Do I Need Title Insurance?

When it comes to buying or refinancing a home, we often are asked the following questions: What is title insurance? Why do I need it?

Title insurance, sometimes referred to as owner’s title insurance or simultaneous title insurance, is a simple insurance policy that provides protection in the event someone comes along and contests your ownership of a property, as well as for those refinancing in the event that money is stolen when being wired between their banks. It also requires the title company to defend you in the event that your ownership is challenged.

If you think this can’t happen, think again. Consider the following examples from consumer expert Clark Howard, including one relayed to him by his brother, a lawyer with many years of experience in real estate title issues:

  • An individual claimed she was part owner of a piece of land that has been divided to create a subdivision and sued the homeowners of the community for a partial share of the land. The residents almost lost their homes, until the woman agreed to a settlement. However, the homeowners spent several thousand dollars in legal fees, defending their property rights.
  • You decide to refinance and break ties with Bank A, paying them off with the proceeds lent to you by Bank B. What happens if the money is stolen while being wired from bank to bank? In many states, you would owe both mortgages, even if you were refinancing in good faith.

When buying a home, you pay a premium for title insurance, but that only protects the bank, not you. Owner’s title insurance can protect you from financial ruin, whether you are buying or refinancing. That’s why investing in owner’s title insurance is an important step in the process. It’s one of the best ways to protect yourself and your finances and is something we highly recommend.