Whoa Pilgrim, The Advent of Title Insurance

When I think of Pilgrims during Thanksgiving, I think big black buckled hats, square toed shoes, and outstretched socks that look like leg warmers. But the word “Pilgrim” refers to easterners settling into the Old West facing the bitter new realities of frontier living.

Title insurance has been protecting “Settlers” with American dreams of property ownership for more than 125 years. Until the nation was nearly a century old, transferring real property did not include any form of guarantee or insurance. Then in 1876, a group of Philadelphia “conveyancers” (as they called themselves) founded the very first title insurance company, advertising it would insure “the purchasers of real estate and mortgages against losses from defective title, liens, and encumbrances.”

Title insurance’s objective remains the same as it’s always been – helping parties in real estate transactions determine their rights and interests, and assuring that land transfer is expeditious and securely transferred.

Today, before a transaction is completed, a title search of the records is made to locate potential problems so that they can be rectified before the transfer proceeds. While most problems can be located in a title search, there can be hidden hazards that even the most thorough search will not reveal. Examples: a fraudulent or forged prior deed, unpaid taxes, an angry contractor filed a construction lien against the property, someone’s name is incorrect, a past notary forgot to sign, a mortgage was never paid off, the prior owners took out a Home Equity Line (HELOC) which was unpaid, a judgment lien against the seller was never paid, assessments were not paid, or any other such innumerable flaws that could impact your ownership – unless you’re protected by title insurance.

So before you make your “pilgrimage” and “settle” into a new property, contact FTIC to provide the best closing experience possible to help avoid potential claims and losses in conveying real estate.

DISCLAIMER: Not intended to constitute legal advice, accuracy, nor completeness, and may not be relied upon as such; consult an attorney. FTIC is a national award winning title insurance company known for its white glove customer service and “No Junk Fee Guarantee.” ®