- What is title insurance and why is it important that you have title insurance?
Title insurance ensures that you actually have complete ownership of a property after you purchase it. While this protection may seem trivial at first blush, it is not. Transferring title to property is relatively easy in most states, including Tennessee. If you want to give your property to someone, all you have to do is draft a legal deed and sign it. While every state and local government has provisions that allow you to record such deeds, in most cases recording a deed is NOT absolutely necessary to make the transfer of property both legal and valid. Thus, there’s always a real chance that months or years after you purchase a property, one or more long lost family members will come out of the woodwork claiming that your purchase was invalid because the former owner transferred the property to them first. Title insurance protects your significant investment in a property you purchased by covering any losses or damages that may result in defects in your legal title to a property. Without title insurance, if there is a defect in title, a person can lose any ownership interest he or she thought they had in the property without any compensation or method of redress.
- What do title companies do?
Title companies perform an extensive search of the public records to determine whether there are any adverse claims to the subject real estate. If any such adverse claims exist, those claims are either eliminated prior to the issuance of a title insurance policy or their existence is excepted from coverage.
In Tennessee, title companies also act as a liaison between the lender, the real estate agent and the buyers and sellers in collecting necessary documentation, ensuring adherence to the lender’s title instructions, making arrangements for proper payment and distribution of funds, closing the transaction, and issuing a title insurance policy.
- If a lender is involved in the real estate transaction and the lender requires title insurance, does the buyer still need title insurance?
Yes. A lender’s policy is one type of title insurance, but it only insures that the financial institution has a valid and enforceable lien on the subject real estate. Generally, the borrower will pay for the lender’s policy.
The type of title insurance, however, that a buyer will want to obtain to protect his or her interest in title to the subject real estate is an owners’ or homeowners’ policy. An owners’ or homeowners’ policy is designed to protect the buyer from title defects that existed prior to the issue date of the policy.
- How much does title insurance cost?
While the cost of title insurance varies based on the purchase price and geographical area of the subject real estate, the cost of title insurance on any given piece of real estate is very small when compared to the benefit and security it provides. Title insurance, unlike most other types of insurance, is a one-time premium that is directly related to the value of your home. It is a one-time only expense, paid when you purchase your home, yet it continues to provide complete coverage for as long as you or your heirs retain an interest in the property.
- What is the difference between an owners’ policy and a homeowners’ policy?
Only persons who intend to reside on the subject real estate are permitted to purchase a homeowners’ policy. This policy provides greater protection to the buyer for a minimal increase in the price of the title insurance. The homeowners’ policy provides protection for inflation in that it increases 10% per year for the first five years following the date of the policy to a maximum amount of 150% of the original policy amount. This inflation protection can be very important to people if they live in an area, such as Middle Tennessee, where home prices have shown the potential to experience significant inflation. It is important for you to understand the differences in these policies in order to best determine which policy is most appropriate for your needs.
- How can a title company help a real estate professional in his or her business?
Title companies vary in many ways. It is important to find a title company that can meet your needs and impress you throughout the entire closing process. A skilled title insurance professional can ensure that your closing goes smoothly and that you leave the closing table with a favorable view of your entire transaction.
- How is Wagon Wheel Title different from other title companies?
In Tennessee, unlike in many states, real estate closings can be conducted by certain qualifying non-attorneys, and title companies can be owned and operated by non-attorneys. While many banks, builders, developers, and commercial real estate brokers will require that attorneys handle their closings, at Wagon Wheel Title, highly trained, licensed attorneys will coordinate and conduct closings for all of our clients. In other words, residential realtors and their clients will receive the same level of service as a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT), for example, buying or selling a multimillion dollar office building.
Additionally, Wagon Wheel Title utilizes state-of-the-art software, technology and banking platforms to manage our clients’ escrow and title service needs. Moreover, Wagon Wheel Title underwrites with Chicago Title Insurance Company, founded in 1847, which is market share leader for title insurance, both nationally and in Tennessee.
Upon entering the offices of Wagon Wheel Title you will notice an immediate difference between us and other title companies. Our offices offer a classic yet contemporary setting and our décor features the original art of many Nashvillians. Wagon Wheel Title provides a business setting with an ambiance that will put realtors, lenders and most importantly, the client, at ease for a closing that should be a fun and exciting event for everyone involved. And, while we think our offices provide a great experience, we are willing and able to conduct closings outside our offices to accommodate the needs of our clients.
- What should I bring to closing?
- Two form of identification. Acceptable forms of identification include:
- Driver’s license
- Social Security card
- Birth certificate
- Military identification
- A cashier’s check for any required funds made out to Wagon Wheel Title and Escrow, LLC, unless otherwise instructed. Alternatively, you may wire funds directly to our escrow account. Contact us for further details if you wish to utilize this method of payment.
- Any additional information or documentation that your lender, real estate agent or we have asked you to provide.
- Two form of identification. Acceptable forms of identification include:
- How long will my closing take?
Although every transaction is different, in our experience the closing ceremony typically lasts around thirty minutes for a seller and around an hour for a buyer or an owner who is refinancing.
- Where is your office?
Our office is located at 202 South 11th Street, Nashville, TN 37206. We are in the heart of East Nashville, just across the river from downtown.
FROM ALL DESTINATIONS VIA INTERSTATE 24
Take Exit 49 toward Shelby Avenue and LP Field. Turn right on Shelby Avenue traveling away from downtown and proceed for 1.0 miles. Turn left on South 11th Street and proceed for .2 miles. We are in the red brick house on your left.
Take Woodland Street across the Woodland Street Bridge. Continue on Woodland Street for 1.2 miles. Turn right on South 11th Street and proceed for .1 miles.
Take Korean Veterans Boulevard across the Shelby Street Bridge. Continue for 1.1 miles as Korean Veterans Boulevard becomes Shelby Avenue. Turn left on South 11th Street and proceed for .2 miles.