Transfer of Title and Ownership of Real Estate in Florida
A deed is a legal instrument used to transfer title and ownership of real property. When you transfer title and ownership of real estate in Florida, you sign a deed conveying or transferring the property to the new owner. In most real estate closings, the seller is responsible for providing the deed that is signed at closing. A seller can allow a buyer's attorney to prepare the deed or the seller can retain a Daytona real estate attorney to represent the seller during the real estate closing process.
All deeds executed in Florida must be signed in the presence of a notary public and two witnesses. Because there are several different types of deeds used to convey real estate, it is important to work with a Daytona real estate attorney. Using the incorrect deed type could result in a cloud on the title that might prevent the new owner from obtaining a mortgage or transferring clear title.
If you want to transfer title to real estate to another party, contact our real estate lawyer in Daytona by calling (888) 316-2131. Our law firm can help you with all your real estate matters.
Types of Deeds Used in Florida to Convey Title
The two most common types of deeds used to transfer real estate are a Warranty Deed and a Quitclaim Deed. Below are descriptions of those deeds and the other deeds that may be used to transfer real estate in Daytona and throughout the state.
• General Warranty Deed — A Warranty Deed is the most common type of deed used in Florida real estate transactions. When an owner signs a General Warranty Deed, the owner is asserting that he is the current owner; he has the right to transfer the property; there are no undisclosed liens or encumbrances; there is no defect of title that will interfere with the new owner's ability to use the property; and, the seller agrees to protect the new owner from damages caused by a title defect and to defend the buyer against all claims by others to the property.
• Statutory Warranty Deed — Provides the same five assertions as the General Warranty Deed, but it was created by a Florida statute as a short-form version of the General Warranty Deed.
• Special Warranty Deed — A Special Warranty Deed conveys the title to the new owner with the same five assertions as a General Warranty Deed. However, the period covered by the assertions is limited to the time that the owner held title to the property. Instead of warranting the property for all previous owners, the Special Warranty Deed only provides the warranty for the time the current seller owned the property. Somewhere within the deed, the seller's liability for the five covenants is limited by specific language such as “arise by, through, or under the Grantor, but no others.”
• Fee Simple Deed — A Fee Simple Deed only conveys title to the property to the new owner. The seller/grantor is not offering any warranties, covenants, or guarantees.
• Quit Claim Deed — A Quit Claim Deed does not provide any warranties and does not claim to transfer fee simple title. The purpose of a Quit Claim Deed is for someone to state that if they own an interest in the property that they are “quitting” their “claim” to the property. In other words, they are giving away any claim or interest they might have owned in the property. The deed is used to clear title defects.
• Life Estate Deeds — Life Estate Deeds transfer title to the property to a person or person for and during their natural lives. When the person or persons dies, the property passes to another person in fee simple. Life Estate Deeds are often used for estate planning purposes.
• Personal Representative's Deeds — When a personal representative (PR) transfers real property from an estate to an heir or a buyer, the PR uses a special deed. In most cases, the deed is based on a Fee Simple Deed,and it does not contain any warranties or covenants.
Several other types of deeds exist, but the deeds are not used very often because they have very limited purposes. As you can see, it is important to choose the correct deed type to convey title. As a buyer, you want a General Warranty Deed because it provides the highest level of covenants and warranties from the seller.
Contact a Daytona Real Estate Attorney
If you are a seller or a buyer, our law firm can represent you a real estate transaction. Our Daytona real estate lawyer can help you negotiate the terms of the contract, prepare the required documents, and ensure your rights and best interests are protected throughout the process.
Call (888) 316-2131 to schedule an appointment or talk with an attorney about a real estate matter.