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Thanks for visiting my real estate deed page – Although this is one of
those pages that you can skip or just scan and move on, I think you will
find a lot of meaningful info in this stop in your way to your home
It is not necessary for you to know a thing about deed to be able to buy a home and, on the top of that, as part of the closing costs, the attorney or the title company will take care of that for you.
Some 45 to 60 days after closing you should receive it in the mail: It will be all done without any need of you to worry about it or the need for any knowledge about deeds.
I was already on my 3rd property when I really started paying attention to the subject – maybe it is just me, but it was never a factor on my decision to buy or sell those properties.
I decided to put some info about deed here, so you could attain some knowledge quickly and keeping in sync with my goal of providing you with “clear, concise and meaningful information” here is all you need to take home:
“Deed” (is) "a formal legal document signed, witnessed, and delivered to effect a conveyance or transfer of property or to create a legal obligation or contract,” in the definition of The Free Dictionary
And here are my own humble words: Title is the wine and deed is the bottle.
NOTE: As you will be able to see below, there are many names and ways to “deed is conveyed” but this is the “Home Buying Hub” – I will not entertain any other ways but “sell” and “purchase.”
The other definitions and circumstances will be left for another day and another forum.
What exactly is Real Estate Deed?
Real Estate Deed is the proper document used to transfer real property
Personal property is transferred via a “bill of sale.”
Real estate property is transferred via a ”deed.”
If you are buying a wash and dryer machine, a lawn mower or a piano and you want to have a document of transfer, the document used is a “bill of sale.”
Actually, I often negotiate these items for my buyers when we put an offer and such items already are in the house and buyers want to keep them…Well, piano is not that often…
Its is best to make sure those items considered as “personal property” are properly negotiated to be included in the transaction. However they should be transferred via a good ol’ “bill of sale.”
On the other hand, the real estate deed, which is also written document, once properly executed by the seller [grantor], is a legally binding document that conveys an interest in the real property to a person or institution [the buyer = the grantee] that accepts it.
You need to accept it – off course, as the buyer, you will accept it, that’s why you worked so hard to buy that house!
It carries all the rights afforded to you via the purchase you have just done.
[Some of the rights may have some restrictions as you will be able to read on CCRs entry below]
The real estate deed must be recorded at the county’s courthouse – but do not worry about it, the closing attorney or the title company will be paid to do it. It is included in the closing costs.
Preparing a real estate deed is a legal undertaking and should be done only by a lawyer or an officer of the court. That is why you will have an attorney or title company to do the closing in a real estate transaction.
Every real estate deed is unique because it marks the end of an ownership and the beginning of a brand new one. The moment the seller signs up the paper work to sell the property to you, his deed comes to an end. Same thing will happen to your deed when eventually you will sell the property again.
Upon valid delivery of the deed by the seller [grantor] acceptance of the buyer [grantee], title passes and the deed ceases to be an operative instrument.
Thereafter, in law, it is merely evidence of conveyance of the title.
Also the destruction of a real estate deed should not effect on the deed, because it is simply evidence of title, no the title itself. Besides the proper recording also gives you that added peace of mind.
Deed X Title – Sorting Seeds Of Confusion
Deed and title are often confused terms: Let's take a look.
“Title” comes from the concept of the law and it is not a physical thing that you can hold on your hands.
Title is the intangible part of the “bundle of rights” afforded by the “real estate” ownership.
Other types of ownership like a dress, a suit, a car also afford you some rights, however “real estate” gives you many more rights not found in any other form of ownership.
Right of enjoyment, right of transfer [selling or gifting] are some forms of rights that you would have in other kind of property like the dress, suit or car I mentioned above.
However many other rights, like air rights, water rights, mineral rights are inherent to “real property” alone.
The deed is the vessel that delivers all of those rights.
Real Estate Deed, yes, it is a written document that will be signed by the grantor [seller] and it will establish “how much and how many” of the rights is transferred by the purchase.
Now, bear in mind that the rights can be divided up and sold separately: In many instances it will!
In the rural area you will find many people or entities that readily would want to buy water rights, grazing rights, mineral rights …not so much so for the “air rights!”
Contrarily, in a densely developed metropolis – NYC comes to mind – every property owner is keenly aware of his/her air rights… And home buying bound folks, like you, soon will be.
However “grazing rights” are very unlikely to come to play.
You might be interested in more practical matters like a nice place to call home! But that is part of the bundle of rights too [right of enjoyment].
On the other hand, it is also useful to get to know how –legally - certain things came to be.
A few examples: a) how can a subdivision dictate the kind of material you have to use in the construction of your home ...or the color of you front yard grass?
b) How can a condominium setting function harmonically?
c) How can you call a co-op unit home but you only a shareholder?
In any of those cases, since the very beginning, the developer incorporated the “CCRs” into the “deed,” where some of rights were clipped.
When you want buy in those setting, you need to be aware of such restrictions.
So, to make a long story short, the deed, a written document, is the vessel that carries the title, a set of rights, which is fluid concept.
Deed should be properly and timely recorded so to protect your just acquired rights.
The purpose of recording a document – including a deed – is to give the world notice of the interest that particular document represents and, in doing so, protecting existing rights.
Ironically the deed recording will also protect future purchasers in the sense that it provides them with solid means to determine what rights and/or encumbrances might exist on the property.
I am not aware of any place in the USA where recording a real estate deed would be optional.
Types of Real Estate Deed
Deed is one of those subjects that present so many layers that it is rather complex to get to the bottom of it.
There are no lack of scholars who think that a license to practice a profession, an academic degrees and [among others] even powers of attorney are “deeds” because each of them grant the holder a given right or privilege.
Adding to this swirl, in real estate there are many “types:”
Bargain and Sale Deed
Deed In Trust
“Mind” started to hurt? Me too…
“But wait there is more…”
Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure
Deed of Confirmation
Deed of re-conveyance
See why I said it a complex subject? But once again this is just some illustration, nothing to worry, nothing that will prevent you from buying your home and enjoying it.
You can buy a home, even if you do not know what the word deed ever existed.
Why should you care what is in the deed?
Real Estate Deed affects your rights and your bottom line
As you can see on my page “Bundle of Rights” there are many rights that may accompany a real estate property or they can be separately by way of sale or gifting.
In a subdivision setting or in a condominium there will be some restriction on the deed via the “covenants, conditions and restrictions” [CCRs / CC&Rs].
As long they do not go against the “general” law and do not discriminate, they can be more restricted than the general law.
CCRs can dictate architecture style, type of material, height of the homes. I once spoke with a lady who confided to me that her subdivision had restriction on what color of grass they were supposed to have in the front yard.
As you also can see on my page “Condominium Ownership,” it can even affect your parking capability. They can dictate the weight of your dog…
As I said above, and I think it is worth repeating, preparing a deed should be left for a real estate lawyer or official of the court, someone in full knowledge and practice of this complex subject.
In Georgia, in the recent years, only attorneys can conduct a real estate transaction closing.
I respect all the honest folks in other areas where non-attorneys can still conduct a closing. However I fully support the change and I do hope that will decrease mistakes …and fraud.
Now it is YOUR turn: Please give us your input!
Do you have some great comments on this topic you would like to share? Any question burning on your head? I would love to publish
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JC Fagundes, Head Broker
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Ph: 404 801 4141