Real Estate in Texas

On the surface, a quitclam deed appears to be a quick and simple way to sell your property or land.  However, while it’s true that these types of deeds are very cheap, it’s also true that they aren’t as useful.  According to laws related to real estate in Texas, title passed to another via a quitclaim deed, for example, cannot be insured, and the property listed in that title cannot be insured until all statute of limitations that apply expire.  In many cases, the statutes won’t expire for 25 years!  Also, it makes no guarantee that the title the seller is handing over to the buyer is a legal, official title.  It only says that, as far as the seller knows, they own the land free and clear.

What are Quitclam Deeds useful for?

While it might seem like quitclaim deeds are, therefore, completely useless, this isn’t entirely true.  Real estate lawyers may recommend doing a quitclaim deed in specific circumstances.  If it’s questionable about which heir has a claim on a property, a quitclaim deed can be written and signed by that heir so that another individual can take ownership of the property.  Quitclaim deeds are also useful if someone has acquired a title to real estate in Texas by adverse possessions, more commonly known as squatter’s rights.

Warranty Deeds

In most cases, if you are buying or selling a property, you want a warranty deed.  This type of deed shows that the seller owns the property being sold to the buyer and has the right to put the property up for sell.  A warranty deed allows property to be insured right away without waiting for any time period to expire.  It also states that the seller has done nothing to invalidate the title.  In nearly every case, real estate in Texas is transferred via warranty deeds rather than quitclaim deeds.

A Third Form: The Deed Without Warranty

Real estate law in Texas actually includes a third form of deed that isn’t exactly a quitclaim deed or a warranty deed.  Instead, it has some properties of both.  A Deed without Warranty, much like a warranty deed, shows that the seller does indeed own the land and has the right to sell it to the buyer.  However, like a quitclaim deed, it does not make any warranty or guarantee that the seller has full right to the property.  If the buyer later discovered the title has a forged signature or some other invalidating item, the seller is not liable in any way.

Please contact a real estate attorney to find out more information on deeds and property.
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