Should a home buyer in Bethesda, MD conduct a title search before purchasing property?

Feb 19, 2020 10:05 PM ET

Buying a home is similar to buying a car. You need to know who owned it and if there are any underlying issues that could later come back and jeopardize your investment. For example, when buying a car, you will likely run a Carfax report to ensure it wasn’t involved in any major accidents with any of its previous owners as this could affect its performance shortly after buying it.

The same concept applies to a home. You are going to want to conduct a title search as opposed to running a vehicle history report to find out who owned the home and if there are any issues with the title that could potentially cause you trouble later on down the road.


What is a title search?

A title is a legal document, often referred to as a deed, that contains information about a specific property such as the names of previous and current property owners, tax information, property value, etc. Now, a title search is something a qualified Bethesda, MD real estate attorney can perform that will determine “if the title is clear and that there are no unexpected surprises.” For example, companies will sometimes place liens on property when a person is unable to satisfy certain debts. In the event you were to buy a home that had a lien on it, and you failed to run a title search, you would likely inherit this debt as it stays with the property.

Some other title issues that could potentially arise during a title search include:


Clerical errors are uncovered. Sometimes, certain information is inputted wrong which then reflects on the home’s public records. In the event a clerical error was made, it could be costly on your part to get it fixed.
The previous property owner failed to pay state or local taxes. If you buy a home from an owner that failed to inform you that he/she did not pay state or local taxes, the tax collector can actually come and seize the home and sell it for the money that is owed, that is unless you pay it.
Undisclosed owners or heirs. If someone passed down their home to another but the individual was never notified of their inheritance, this could have some effect on your rights as the new homeowner.


While there are several other issues that could potentially come up during a title search, most are easy to resolve when you have an experienced real estate lawyer in Bethesda, MD helping you. Therefore, if you are in the market to buy a new home, be sure to contact Bethesda, MD real estate attorney Michael E. Gross as he can assist you with the entire home-buying process.


See Campaign:
Contact Information:
The Law Offices of Michael E. Gross
4800 Hampden Lane, #200
Bethesda, MD 20814
Phone: 301-718-2988

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