Types of Real Estate Deeds
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Types of Real Estate Deeds

Types of real estate deeds can be confusing. Learn what these legal terms mean. What is the difference between a Warranty Deed and a Quitclaim Deed? How do I transfer my name from real estate after a divorce? Looking for an explanation of the different types of real estate deeds, and you'll discover what is a Warranty Deed or a Quitclaim Deed, Deed of Trust or Special Purpose Deed or Limited Liability Deed.

A real estate deed is a legal document required for adding or removing a person's name from a title to gift real estate or to place real estate into a living trust. Determine which one of the several types of real estate deeds is most appropriate.

A deed legally affects ownership interests and rights between a grantor and a grantee. The grantor is the seller or current owner who is transferring the real estate property. The grantee is the buyer or new owner who is receiving the real estate property.

Different types of real estate deeds determine the grantor’s obligations and provide various types of protection to the grantee. The majority of real estate transactions rely on using either a warranty or a quitclaim deed to convey title. Warranties are legally binding promises referred to as covenants. The difference between these types of real estate deeds more specifically define what the grantor is conveying and what degree of warranties are involved.

The following types of real estate deeds legally transfer title of ownership or an interest in real property to another:

General Warranty Deed

These types of real estate deeds provide the highest level of protection for the grantee. The grantor makes warranties to the grantee and any heirs. These warranties protect the grantee through specific covenants such as:

-The covenant of seisin where the grantor warrants that they own the property and have the right to convey it.

-The covenant against encumbrances, which warrants the property is free of liens or encumbrances.

-The covenant of quiet enjoyment, which indicates the grantee will not be disturbed because of a defective title.

-The covenant of further assurance, which promises the grantor will deliver any document necessary to make the title good.

Special Warranty Deed

The Special Warranty Deed has basically the same purpose as the quitclaim deed and is sometimes called a limited warranty deed. The grantor provides fewer warranties and limits liability by warranting that the grantor did nothing to impair title during the time grantor held the title. It only warrants what the deed explicitly states. These types of real estate deeds are often used by corporations who do not want to take on the full liability of a general warranty deed.

Quitclaim Deed

The quitclaim deed transfers only the interest in real property that the grantor has. This type of real estate deed is frequently used among divorcing spouses or where there is little or no question about ownership. It transfers and clears a title from one joint owner to another.

Of all the types of real estate deeds, the quitclaim deed provides the least amount of protection for the grantee. It is also called a non-warranty deed as it offers no warranties of title or quality of the title. It conveys only the interest that the grantor has in the property that existed at the time of the conveyance and disclaims rights of the one who signs it to property.

Deed of Trust

A Deed of Trust is used in place of a mortgage to transfer real estate property to a trustee. The trustee is usually a title company that holds the title as security for a loan. Once the loan is paid off, the title is transferred to the borrower. Should the borrower default on the loan, the trustee will use a new deed to liquidate the property and recover partial loss.

Special Purpose Deeds

Among the types of real estate deeds are special purpose deeds. These are used by court officials when grantor’s default on a loan, fail to pay taxes or after a grantor’s death.

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