Real Estate Title & Closings

Real Estate Title and Closing Services

Palma Law Group, P.A. provides full service real estate title and closing services to buyers, sellers and Real Estate professionals with their real estate title insurance and closing needs. Our attorneys are active members of the Florida Attorney Title Insurance Fund and are licensed title agents with one of the nation’s largest and most prestigious title insurance underwriters, Old Republic National Title Insurance Company.

At Palma Law Group, P.A. our attorneys and staff work together in a collective effort to provide prompt, professional and accurate information and services to our clients.
*Negotiate Short Sale Contracts with Lenders

* Title searches and thorough examinations

*Preparation of Title commitments which specify all defects which must be cured prior to closing

*Clear all liens and encumbrances and obtain corrective documentation to provide clean and transferable title

*Assist in the coordination and scheduling of surveyors, home inspectors, insurance inspectors and other parties necessary for a timely closing

*Perform all phases of the real estate closings (hold escrow funds in trust, review closing packets provided by lenders, notarize signed documents, collect and disburse funds, record necessary documents with lenders and Clerk of Court)

*Issue final Title policies for both Owners and Lenders.

*Approved to perform Government closing on all HUD properties

Owner’s Policies/Mortgagee Policies

There are two types of title insurance; owner’s title insurance (an Owner’s Policy), which protects the buyer, and lender title insurance (a Mortgagee Policy), which protects the lender. In a typical residential transaction, the title insurance often required by the mortgage lender will not safeguard the rights and interests of the homebuyer; therefore, a separate Owner’s Policy is necessary.

An Owner’s Policy is typically issued in the amount of the real estate purchase price and remains in effect for as long as the owner, or his or her heirs, retains an interest in the property. In addition to identifying risk before a transaction is completed, the Owner’s Policy will pay valid claims and all defense costs against attacks on the title.

A Mortgagee Policy assures the lender of the validity, priority and enforceability of its lien (mortgage) – serving as protection for the lender’s security interest in the property. A Mortgagee Policy is issued in the amount of the loan and liability decreases as the mortgage debt is reduced.

Who pays for the title insurance is indicated in the terms of your contract. In some Florida counties it is customary that the seller purchases the Owner’s Policy for the buyer, in effect telling them the title is clear.

Why Title Insurance?

In addition to being a requirement by most conventional lending institutions, title insurance is critical to a real estate transaction because issues can, and often do, arise with regard to a property’s chain of title.  The basis for purchasing title insurance is to protect the title owner against any defects which would prevent them from clearly owning the property. It also protects against liens that any previous owner of the property may have incurred which would be revealed within the chain of title. These instances include unpaid mortgages, property taxes, unpaid debts, survey encroachments within the property boundary lines, or prior errors in public records.

Real Estate Attorney vs. Non-Attorney Title Company

There is a misconception that using a non-attorney title company rather than a real estate attorney will result in cheaper title policy premiums. When selecting Palma Law Group, P.A. this is not the case. Florida Law requires that a title agent issuing an insurance policy charge rates promulgated by the Department of Insurance. These promulgated rates are the same for an attorney as they are for a title company and in many cases, the title insurance issued by an attorney is underwritten by the same underwriting company as would be obtained through a title company.

The main advantage to utilizing a real estate attorney over a non-attorney title company for closing a real estate transaction is that the title company can only provide a limited scope of services and cannot provide legal advice. An attorney can review and explain an offer for purchase or sale as well as negotiate short sale offers with the lender. An attorney can also prepare contract modifications which may be instrumental in closing a deal. In some instances a title search may uncover a problem or defect with title that an attorney can prepare the corrective documents and provide legal advice as to the best way to proceed with the transaction.

In summation, the real estate attorneys at Palma Law Group, P.A. can provide all the same service as a non-attorney title company with an added value of being able to provide legal advice and services when needed.