What is a Title Search and How Does It Work

Purchasing a house is a big step in a person’s life. It can be overwhelming the number of things that have to be done in a short amount of time. One of the most important steps in your home-buying process is the completion of a title search. In this article, TitleQuest – a title company in Virginia Beach will explain what a title search is and how it works.

What is a Title Search?

When someone is selling their house, they are typically assumed to be the person entitled to sell the home. However, sometimes that is not the case and problems can arise. A title search is performed in order to determine the rightful owner of the property you are interested in purchasing. 

If the seller is the rightful owner, then the sale can go through with no problem. If the seller is not the rightful owner, or if there are any liens or claims against the property, then the sale can become more complicated. 

Clean vs Muddied Title Search

Once a title search is complete, the search can come back “clean” or “muddied”. A clean title search is when there is only one owner of the property. This means no other person can make a legal claim to own it. A “muddied” title search is when a title search determines there are liens on the property or other people who can claim ownership of the property. 

How does a title search work? 

A title search is typically completed by either an attorney or a title company. They look through public records and other documentation on the property to determine the owner of the property. They also will be able to discover any easements, claims, liens, or loans that are on the property. All of this information is compiled into a document and the findings are presented to you prior to your purchase of the real estate property. 

How does the title transfer?

Once the owner of the property is determined, both the buyer and the seller will sign a new deed agreement. This is a legal document that grants ownership from the seller to the buyer. Once both parties have signed, the deed is filed at the local courthouse. And finally, the title is officially transferred to the buyer. 

Title Insurance

Even detailed and thorough title search companies can miss things, which is why title insurance is important. Title insurance protects the buyer and their mortgage company from financial implications that can arise after or during the purchase or the property. This one-time purchase is meant to protect the seller from past issues with the property that they are not responsible for. This can include unrecorded easements, outstanding lawsuits, outstanding liens, or other claims to the property.

Looking for a title company in Virginia Beach?

Title searches are one of the most crucial steps in your home buying process. You don’t want to end up with problems down the road from an improper title search or lack of title insurance. Thankfully, TitleQuest has been helping home buyers in the Virginia Beach area for many years. 

TitleQuest is composed of a team of dedicated individuals. We perform title searches, offer title insurance, and provide excellent customer service. We know what a big step this is, and we want to give you peace of mind. At the end of the day, we want to ensure your home is yours. Are you looking for a title company in Virginia Beach? Look no further than TitleQuest. 


CTA: What are you waiting for? Call us at (757) 410 – 8086 or submit a title order today!