Help! Title issue in SC and trying to close.

19 Replies

We are supposed to closing in 8 days on a duplex in South Carolina and I just found out that the previous (deceased) owner had joint ownership on title of property at some point. Then changed title to himself using Power of Attorney for the other person. How is that possible?

Their attorney will insure title through Chicago title but what happens when/if we sell.   What if some long lost heirs later pop us down the road.  Is this easy to fix?   Does Chicago title cover the fix or do we? 

Any direction or light on the issue will be greatly appreciated. 

Alan  

Alan, interesting situation.   My first inclination is that you would be fine if you have received a clean, clear marketable title.  If there is a claim and you are insured that's a great first step...BUT, be very sure to review your policy and exclusions from Chicago.   If a quiet title action is required it will take quite a while typically and several thousand dollars.  I have been involved in multiple situations that required it and it can be a long process.  The other thing to do is contact your regular title co. and discuss it with them.   Getting another perspective from a title expert is always a great idea.

Thank you @Account Closed , we pushed back a little and evidently there is some family drama. They produced documentation for the POA and record of $65k transfer before the quit claim to current owner. Made us feel a little better. But...

Question for you, our lender indicated that this is very common. She seesthis 1in every 5 transactions. Have u seen this. I thought that as an attorney state the sellers attorney is signing off on clear title. So I would think she would want it clear. It's her license on the line.

That’s a good idea for checking the policy.  Thanks.   Here is CA we use escrow companies and our person here said she would be cautious but she didn’t know about attorney states.   I will be calling around Monday.

Thx again, 

Alan

Attorney states are really, really strange to us who are use to our "normal" title and escrow companies and the fairly similar processes they use.   My feeling is that the attorney states and their processes seem to be all over the place and differ from attorney to attorney.   You DEFINITELY want to find a really good attorney who knows their stuff....it's a huge help.   

1 in 5 seems like an insane stat to me.  We have done over 60+ transactions in SC and I have never seen it.   Again, I would be all over reading the policy and exclusions first of all.  You can have marketable title, but that doesn't necessarily mean you have all the bugs off title - just because the attorney conveys title for you does NOT mean you don't have any title issues.   There are many examples, but I won't ramble on here about it.   I would just be very clear on what the title situation will be if you close.    If you need a couple really good SC attorney's just let me know.  

Originally posted by @Alan Sweeten :

Thank you @Douglas Davies , we pushed back a little and evidently there is some family drama. They produced documentation for the POA and record of $65k transfer before the quit claim to current owner. Made us feel a little better. But...

Question for you, our lender indicated that this is very common.  She seesthis 1in every 5 transactions.  Have u seen this.   I thought that as an attorney state the sellers attorney is signing off on clear title.  So I would think she would want it clear.  It’s her license on the line.  

That’s a good idea for checking the policy.  Thanks.   Here is CA we use escrow companies and our person here said she would be cautious but she didn’t know about attorney states.   I will be calling around Monday.

Thx again, 

Alan

IN SC I sure do.. that's why when I go into contract in that state I run title day one.. so this does not happen at the end after I spend money on due diligence.. most closers there wait until the last minute to run title so its a little backwards compared to CA or OR WA NV etc. 

Originally posted by @Douglas Davies:

Attorney states are really, really strange to us who are use to our "normal" title and escrow companies and the fairly similar processes they use.   My feeling is that the attorney states and their processes seem to be all over the place and differ from attorney to attorney.   You DEFINITELY want to find a really good attorney who knows their stuff....it's a huge help.   

1 in 5 seems like an insane stat to me.  We have done over 60+ transactions in SC and I have never seen it.   Again, I would be all over reading the policy and exclusions first of all.  You can have marketable title, but that doesn't necessarily mean you have all the bugs off title - just because the attorney conveys title for you does NOT mean you don't have any title issues.   There are many examples, but I won't ramble on here about it.   I would just be very clear on what the title situation will be if you close.    If you need a couple really good SC attorney's just let me know.  

have not seen a mic in the cockpit in a while  great photo !!!  

Originally posted by @Douglas Davies:

@Jay Hinrichs  Ha!  Yep, in our 2006 King Air 200 we have one on both sides :)

 burning Jet A love it !!!  me Cirrus sr 22  bug smashing at its finest !

Originally posted by @Douglas Davies:

 @Jay Hinrichs  Love the Cirrus have flown the regular SR22 and the turbo with the G1000.   Great planes

 I bought mine new in 04  that was cool going to Duluth transition training and walking into the hanger seeing that brand new bird :)

I have about 1000 hours in it.. not as much as I like.. and right now I am battling my medical.. so been grounded for while.

Anyway safe flying.. and I really really enjoy working in Charleston SC  great people great place.. !!!!

@Jay Hinrichs   Wow...that's too cool!!  The factory pick up is really a cool thing to do.   My buddy who got the turbo did the same thing and loved it.    Good luck with the medical...that whole process is frustrating for sure, but they are better about it nowadays.    

We are based in AZ...but have been in the Asheville, NC market, AZ, San Diego markets.  We now focus primarily in Greenville - been in the market for 2.5yrs or so and just love the people, the area and the market.   

Have a great Sunday - get that medical back and let's go fly!

Originally posted by @Douglas Davies:

@Jay Hinrichs  Wow...that's too cool!!  The factory pick up is really a cool thing to do.   My buddy who got the turbo did the same thing and loved it.    Good luck with the medical...that whole process is frustrating for sure, but they are better about it nowadays.    

We are based in AZ...but have been in the Asheville, NC market, AZ, San Diego markets.  We now focus primarily in Greenville - been in the market for 2.5yrs or so and just love the people, the area and the market.   

Have a great Sunday - get that medical back and let's go fly!

a little thread creep here.. I plan on getting my medical back we have a place in Summerlin and spend the winter and I Love flying in the southland so that is my goal.. Like flying over to Catalina is super cool and mixing it up with atc flying through the LA basin .. brings back your radio skills  that we sometimes lose when I am mainly flying rural NW.. and not talking to anyone..  

Yes, @Jay Hinrichs I think the pilot passion stuff just took over a thread.  Sorry @Alan Sweeten -  Jay and I have been around a while if we can help any further just let us know.   You are welcome to call my cell any time.   Again, sorry for the take over here :)

Originally posted by @Alan Sweeten :

Thank you @Account Closed , we pushed back a little and evidently there is some family drama. They produced documentation for the POA and record of $65k transfer before the quit claim to current owner. Made us feel a little better. But...

Question for you, our lender indicated that this is very common.  She seesthis 1in every 5 transactions.  Have u seen this.   I thought that as an attorney state the sellers attorney is signing off on clear title.  So I would think she would want it clear.  It’s her license on the line.  

That’s a good idea for checking the policy.  Thanks.   Here is CA we use escrow companies and our person here said she would be cautious but she didn’t know about attorney states.   I will be calling around Monday.

Thx again, 

Alan

 Lender is fine with it 

Title company will insure. 

Don’t overthink it. If there were an issue the lender or title company (both of which should be more risk adverse than you) would put on the breaks 

@Cody L. @Alan Sweeten Gotta be real careful with that approach...really can depend on your intentions with the property.  Again, just having title insurance does not necessarily mean all is ok.  We are going thru it right now with a house we intend to flip.  Seller has two really old liens on the house...both have been paid (but we lack good paperwork) -Chicago is willing to insure, but we don't want to go to market after fix up and have the next buyer not want to close because of the liens..which does happen.  Even if we are insured there can be exclusions, etc.  Finding the companies that put on the liens has been a nightmare.  We are choosing to do a quiet title action now rather than later - on the Seller's time, not on our clock.   We will get it resolved, but I'd much rather deal with this now rather than losing a buyer down the road.  Tried to keep this short, but happy to discuss further if this wasn't clear.   

Originally posted by @Account Closed :

@Cody L. @Alan Sweeten Gotta be real careful with that approach...really can depend on your intentions with the property.  Again, just having title insurance does not necessarily mean all is ok.  We are going thru it right now with a house we intend to flip.  Seller has two really old liens on the house...both have been paid (but we lack good paperwork) -Chicago is willing to insure, but we don't want to go to market after fix up and have the next buyer not want to close because of the liens..which does happen.  Even if we are insured there can be exclusions, etc.  Finding the companies that put on the liens has been a nightmare.  We are choosing to do a quiet title action now rather than later - on the Seller's time, not on our clock.   We will get it resolved, but I'd much rather deal with this now rather than losing a buyer down the road.  Tried to keep this short, but happy to discuss further if this wasn't clear.   

I've done a lot that many would say was not smart.  It's worked for me.  I guess I assume if I'm right more than I'm wrong then my risk approach will be a net positive. 

Originally posted by @Alan Sweeten :

Thank you all again for your time.   @Jay Hinrichs going forward I certainly will pull title day 1.      Hindsight at this point.

@Douglas Davies Sorry!  Correction, the lender said it happens approx. 5 times a year.   My wife corrected me.  

Update:  We just got off of the phone with our attorney and she clearly stated that the seller does not have a Clean Marketable Title.    She indicated that we could get Chicago Title to issue a "title endorsement"  stating they see the seller having clean marketable title.  Then we would have something in writing.    

In Addition: The seller is NOT willing to clear up title based on some family issues. There was fractional ownership with siblings that have all since passed. The questionable title transfer; it looks like there was a $65k conveyance at the time. So the seller is not willing to open the estate back up due to "$ grubby cousins." Their comments are that we are being unreasonable.

Well I don't want his cousins as partners. Am I working too hard to make this happen? Do I walk. Then the question becomes will the seller release my $5k earnest money. What kind of hoops do I have to get that back? urgh!

@Jay Hinrichs and @Douglas Davies  I get the hijack.  I am USAF veteran (96-00').   Airplanes are amazing works of art.  I worked on a C-135 during my time and love love the simplicity of the  A-10. 

 So check out the charity I started with some fellow BP members a heroshome.org.  I think you will like it.

it could be regional we have run into quite a few title issues down in Charleston working in the old areas of town.. and its the usual did not probate shirt tail relatives etc.. one parcel I was in contract on I spent 3k on architectural plans during escrow and could not close.

Again sorry for hijacking the thread there are not a lot of pilots on BP and when I saw Doug's avitar I had to comment you don't see many mic's in the cockpit these days..