How far back does title search go?

2 Replies

I am buying a property. The seller purchased the property in 1988. Upon receiving the title commitment, the property is in my seller's name, but there was a break in the chain of title from about 80 years ago. There is no record of previous seller A selling to previous seller B (not my seller). Title company says they want conveyance from previous Seller A to my seller. 

I've done some searching, and previous Seller A's company is no longer in business. 

My question: 

1. Do title company absolutely NEED conveyance even though title is in my seller's name? Will they close the deal regardless?  

2. Will switching title companies be beneficial as other title company may not look back so far? 

3. Is the only way to solve the issue is conveying title from previous seller A to my seller? 

60 years is pretty much standard around here... but since your property now has a known problem (trust me, title insurers do not operate in a vacuum), the time period is irrelevant.

Switching title companies wouldn't fix the problem, it would actually hurt you. Closing with a known issue would likely bar a title insurance claim once the issue surfaced and regardless, this is a title problem that as a buyer you definitely want resolved.

There are a few ways to resolve this including a corrective or confirmatory or other deed but they all will require full disclosure to the title company/insurer and some corrective action or affirmative coverage for the issue.

Great advise, Thanks Tom. We resolved the issue. Turns out both previous sellers were companies owned by the same person. I made my title company aware, and got it taken care of.