Property Liens — How to Remove Liens from Property in Florida
One of the most important steps in the process of buying real estate in Florida is the title search. A thorough title search reveals if there are any problems in the chain of ownership, including whether there are any unsatisfied property liens still attached to the property.
It is very important to contact a Daytona real estate lawyer to conduct a title search on any real estate you are interested in purchasing. If there are property liens, your attorney can assist you through the process of removing property liens so that you can receive clear title to the property.
Call (888) 316-2131 now to speak with a Daytona property lien removal attorney.
Common Property Liens in Florida
Some liens are well-known,and people are familiar with those property liens. However, there are property liens that you may not know about that can attach to real property. Common liens that can attach to real estate in Florida include:
• Mortgages — Purchase money mortgages, refinances, credit lines, equity lines, and other mortgage instruments can attach to property if the lienholder files the mortgage properly with the county clerk’s office. A mortgage company typically will not release its lien until it receives payment in full for the loan. However, some companies may release a parcel of land for a partial payment. Furthermore, in some cases, the mortgage company was paid in full but neglected to satisfy its lien on the record.
• Unpaid Property Taxes — If the property taxes are not paid for real estate, the county can place a real estate tax lien against the property. The county may auction the property at a tax sale if the owner does not pay the taxes. Property taxes follow the property,not the owner. Therefore, if you purchase property with unpaid property taxes, you immediately become liable for the tax debt as the new owner.
• Homeowners’ Association Dues — Homeowners’ Associations (HOA) can place a lien on the property if the owner does not pay the HOA dues according to the Restrictive Covenants for the neighborhood. The lien remains on the property for unpaid fees until the debt is paid. A new owner becomes responsible for the HOA lien if it is not paid at closing.
• IRS Tax Lien — If a homeowner does not pay his or her personal income taxes, the IRS can file a tax lien against the property. The owner cannot transfer clear, fee simple title to the property until the IRS tax lien is paid in full or the IRS releases the property from the tax lien.
• Personal Judgment Liens — If a property owner is sued for a personal debt and the creditor obtains a judgment against the property owner, the judgment lien attaches to any real estate the owner has an interest in at the time of the judgment or any time after that. As with any other liens, the owner cannot convey clear title until the judgment lien is satisfied or the property is released from the judgment lien.
• Mechanic’s Liens — When a contractor works on a property, that contractor can place a lien on the property for unpaid services or labor that were provided in good faith. Mechanic’s liens must be recorded within 90 days of the last day work was performed on the property. After providing notice of the lien to the homeowner by certified mail, the contractor may foreclose on the lien if the property owner refuses to pay the debt owed to the contractor.
The above list is not intended to be an exhaustive list of all encumbrances that may relate to Florida real estate. If you are purchasing property, you need a Daytona real estate attorney to perform a thorough title search to determine if the property has any outstanding liens attached to the title. We discussed residential property above; however, the property liens above can also attach to commercial property. In some cases, commercial properties may have numerous mechanic’s liens if the contractor did not pay sub-contractors for their work.
Contact a Daytona Property Lien Removal Attorney for Help
If you are attempting to sell property or purchase property that has one or more liens filed against the property other than a mortgage, you may need assistance in removing those liens. In some cases, the lien has been satisfied,but the lien holder never canceled the lien or satisfied the lien.
Our lawyers can help track down the lien holder to obtain a release or satisfaction of lien when the lien is paid in full. Our Daytona real estate lawyers can also negotiate with lien holders to accept a lower amount to release the lien if there is little to no equity in the property and a foreclosure or other action on the lien would not provide any funds for the lien holder.
Please call (888) 316-2131 to schedule an appointment with our Daytona real estate lawyer to discuss the ways you can have a lien removed from your real property. The sooner you begin the process, the quicker you can close on the contract for sale and move on.