Americans have the future in mind when they build a house, and they purchase homeowner’s insurance to help protect that future. But with home ownership comes the need to protect the property against the past, as well as the future.
Each successive owner brings the possibility of title challenges to the property. Title insurance protects a policyholder against challenges to rightful ownership of real property, challenges that arise from circumstances of past ownerships.
When you purchase real property, rely on Chicago Title to protect your interests. You’ll be insured by the leading title company in the U.S., backed by more than 160 years of successful title operations.
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It is of utmost importance that you receive clear title to the property when you purchase real estate. In order to do so, you must first be informed of any existing rights or claims that may, in the future, threaten your title and possession to the property. Title insurance provides you with this twofold protection.
In order to determine the status of title, Chicago Title conducts a diligent search of the public records for those documents associated with the property. Chicago Title then examines those recorded documents in order to determine if there are any rights or claims that may have an impact upon the title to the property. The title search may reveal the existence of recorded defects, liens or encumbrances upon the title such as unpaid taxes, unsatisfied mortgages, judgments and tax liens against the current or past owners, easements, restrictions and court actions. These recorded defects, liens and encumbrances are reported to you prior to your purchase of the property. Once reported, these matters can be accepted, resolved or extinguished prior to the closing of the transaction. In addition, you are protected against any recorded defects, liens or encumbrances upon the title that are unreported to you and which are within the coverage of the particular policy issued in the transaction. This is the first benefit you receive from title insurance.
The title to the property that you have purchased could be seriously threatened or lost completely by hazards which are considered "hidden risks." "Hidden Risks" are those matters, rights or claims that are not shown by the public records and, therefore, are not discoverable by a search and examination of those public records. Matters such as forgery, incompetency or incapacity of the parties, fraudulent impersonation, and unknown errors in the records are examples of "hidden risks" which could provide a basis for a claim after you have purchased the property. In order to protect you against this possibility, Chicago Title provides insurance coverage for such claims. This is the second benefit you receive from title insurance.
If a claim is made against your insured title, Chicago Title Insurance Company protects you by: (1) Defending your title, in court if necessary, at no cost to you, and (2) Bearing the cost of settling the case, if it proves valid, in order to protect your title and maintain your possession of your property.
Title insurance gives you the assurance that possible clouds on title to the property you are purchasing and developing - which can be discovered from the public records - have been called to your attention that such defects can be corrected before you buy. Additionally, it is insurance that if any undiscovered claims covered by your policy arise out of the past to threaten your ownership of real estate, it will be disposed of, or you will be reimbursed exactly as your title insurance policy provides.
Unlike other forms of insurance, the original premium is your only cost as long as you or your heirs own the property. There are no annual payments to keep your Owner's Title Insurance Policy in force.
Every owner, purchaser and beneficiary, whether by a deed or contract, should have an insured title. The entire investment depends upon the quality of title. If you are buying real estate mortgages, you are paying for a good title and you should see that you have one. If either fire insurance or title insurance is omitted, your security is not complete.
Our title policy protects you against unforeseen defects in title that would not be revealed by an abstract, the public records or an attorney’s opinion.
Whether this is your first home or fiftieth real estate investment, ask your realtor or broker to protect you and your property with Chicago Title.