GENERAL WARRANTY DEED: Definition & How It Works (Texas & Florida)

GENERAL WARRANTY DEED
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When buying a house, a signed deed is required to transfer property ownership. Among the several types of deeds used in real estate are general warranty documents, quitclaim deeds for property transfers between friends and relatives, and bargain and sale deeds. In this article, we’ll discuss the unique general warranty deed. We’ll go over what they are, what they protect you from, and when you might need one.

What Is a Warranty Deed?

A warranty deed is a type of real estate document that offers the maximum level of protection to the property buyer. It guarantees or pledges that the owner owns the property free and clear of any liens, mortgages, and other encumbrances.

The seller or owner, often known as the grantor, and the buyer, or grantee, are the two persons engaged in a warranty deed. Both parties can be individuals or businesses, and they are frequently strangers to one another.

Deeds come in a variety of forms, including warranty deeds, special warranty deeds, and quitclaim deeds. The distinction between these deeds is usually by the warranties and covenants that the seller conveys to the buyer.

How Warranty Deeds Work

A deed is a legal instrument that transfers property from one entity to another, most commonly in a real estate transaction. A general warranty deed offers the buyer the most comprehensive protection. When a buyer is trying to secure a mortgage or title insurance, warranty deeds are frequently used.

The date of the transaction, the names of the persons involved, a description of the property being transferred, and the buyer’s signature are all included on all deeds. Signing deeds in the presence of a witness and/or notary may be required.

A general warranty deed holds the grantor liable for any breaches of warranties and guarantees, even if the breach occurred without their knowledge or when the grantor was not the owner of the property. The grantor of a general warranty deed assumes a significant degree of risk because they are accountable for any breaches that occur much outside their knowledge or ownership of the property.

As a result, most purchases include title insurance to protect against any claims and liens. Before the property is transferred, a title company would conduct a comprehensive title search and look into any other potential issues.

A warranty deed may include the following covenants and protections:

  • The grantor warrants that they are the rightful owner of the property and has a legal right to transfer the title.
  • The grantor warrants that the property is free and clear of all liens and that there are no outstanding claims on the property from a creditor using it as collateral.
  • There is a guarantee that the title would withstand any third-party claims to ownership of the property.
  • The grantor will do whatever is necessary to make good the grantee’s title to the property.

What Is A General Warranty Deed?

General warranty deeds are in the majority of real estate title transactions because they are one of the most secure types of deeds. General warranty deeds ensure that the grantor has the right to sell the property and that the grantee will receive a clear title free of debts, claims, and other legal encumbrances. These documents effectively shield the grantee from any current or future legal challenges that may emerge over the property.

Overview

A general warranty deed conveys real estate from the buyer to the seller with the assurance that the seller has a clear, unencumbered legal title. This indicates that the seller guarantees that the property is free of liens or creditors’ claims and that if there are, the seller will compensate the buyer for any claims.

A general warranty deed must include the following to be valid:

  • The name and address of the seller (called the grantor)
  • The name and address of the buyer (called the grantee)
  • A legal description of the property (found on the previous deed)
  • A statement that the grantor is transferring the property to the grantee
  • A statement that the grantor is the legal owner of the property and has the right to transfer it
  • A statement that there are no legal claims against the property by creditors
  • A guarantee by the grantor that if claims do emerge, they will compensate the buyer

A general warranty deed is not a contract of sale because it does not include a price or a transfer of funds. Instead, it is the legal instrument that completes the transaction by transferring ownership from the grantor to the grantee.

What’s Covered In A General Warranty Deed?

The guarantees of a general warranty deed are covenants. Traditionally, there are six covenants of title which can be into present covenants and future covenants. The present covenants are:

  • Covenant of Seisin. Guarantees the grantor has legal possession of the property.
  • Covenant of Right To Convey. Guarantees that the grantor has the right to sell the property.
  • Covenant Against Encumbrances. Guarantees the grantor has disclosed to the grantee any and all of the property’s encumbrances.

The future covenants of a general warranty deed are:

  • Covenant of Warranty. Guaranteeing the grantor will protect the property against any claims of ownership from another party.
  • Covenant of Quiet Enjoyment. Guaranteeing that the grantee will maintain the property’s ownership free of future interferences from third parties.
  • Covenant of Further Assurances. Guaranteeing the grantor will continue to take steps towards fixing any encumbrances within the grantor’s title.

Using a General Warranty Deed

To utilize a general warranty deed to transfer property, you must first obtain the form that is used in the state where the property is located. Each state has its own forms, as well as its own language. You might be able to find the paperwork by looking through your state’s statutes or visiting the state website. If you need help drafting a general warranty deed, you can turn to an internet service provider.

Once you get the relevant form, you must completely fill it out. It must be by both the donor and the grantee, usually in the presence of a notary. To be legally enforceable, the deed must then be filed with the county registrar’s office. The formal transfer of the property is complete after the paperwork is filed.

A general warranty deed is the greatest alternative for real estate buyers because it gives the most comprehensive assurance that the property is free of liens and claims. Because of this, general warranty deeds are the most prevalent type of deed in real estate transactions.

General warranty deed Texas

The Texas warranty deed is a type of deed that offers an unrestricted title warranty. It ensures that the current owner is in possession of a clear title to the property. The warranty does not apply to the time the property was owned by the current owner. This means that the current owner may be liable for title difficulties that occurred before the current owner of the property. Warranty deeds are common in Texas:

  • When a buyer is purchasing residential property from a seller for full value;
  • When the buyer does not intend to purchase title insurance; or
  • In other circumstances where the current owner is comfortable with the legal risk associated with an unlimited warranty of title.

Special language is to ensure that the deed qualifies as a warranty deed. This language is automatically by our deed preparation service and is valid in all Texas counties.

Which is More Important Title or Deed?

The title or the deed—which one is more significant? Due to the fact that they both serve a function in the process of selling a house, the title and the deed are both of equivalent significance. A title search, for instance, can not only determine who the owner of the property is, but it can also disclose any liens, debts, or property taxes that are outstanding on the property.

Can You Sell a Property Without Title Deeds?

In a nutshell, the answer is yes, you can sell your house without the deeds; however, you will need to be able to demonstrate ownership of the property through other ways in order to do so. Deeds are the collection of documents that are typically used to prove ownership of a property. As a result, demonstrating ownership of a property without deeds can be a more time-consuming process; nonetheless, it is not impossible.

Do Title Deeds Show Who Owns Fence?

There is no basis in law for the assumption that the manner in which a wall or fence is built may be used to determine ownership of the structure (for example, that the posts and rails of a fence are on the owner’s side of the fence). Covenants requiring the maintenance of a wall or fence may be included in a property’s deed. However, the presence of such covenants does not necessarily confer ownership.

General Warranty Deed Florida

The Florida warranty deed is a type of deed that offers an unrestricted title warranty. It ensures that the current owner is in possession of a clear title to the property. The warranty does not apply to the time the property was owned by the current owner. This means that the current owner may be liable for title difficulties that occurred before the current owner purchased the property. Warranty deeds are common in Florida:

  • When a buyer is purchasing residential property from a seller for full value;
  • When the buyer does not intend to purchase title insurance; or
  • In other circumstances where the current owner is comfortable with the legal risk with an unlimited warranty of title.

Special language is to ensure that the deed qualifies as a warranty deed. This language is automatically by our deed preparation service and is valid in all Florida counties.

General Warranty Deeds vs. Other Deeds

A general warranty deed is unique in that it ensures that no outstanding claims against the property exist, as well as a promise to compensate the grantee if any do. This is distinct from other types of actions:

#1. Quitclaim deed

A quitclaim deed just conveys the grantor’s ownership rights in the property and makes no guarantees that the property is free of claims.

#2. Special warranty deed

In a special warranty deed, the grantor simply guarantees that no claims have been against the property during their possession, and no guarantee about any time period prior to that. This type of deed is a limited warranty deed.

General Warranty Deed vs. Special Warranty Deed

There are two types of warranty deeds to be aware of in the realm of warranty deeds. There are general warranty deeds and special warranty deeds. Both offer the same “warranties” that make them a must-have for buyers, but they have significantly different definitions of what these warranties cover.

The general warranty deed is an all-encompassing insurance package that provides the consumer with the maximum level of protection against fraud, property concerns, and claims to real estate interest/title (as stated in the deed). The grantor will be fully responsible for any legal actions against the property. And also any problems that arise as a result of the general warranty deed. This includes the property’s whole history, including any concerns that arose prior to the seller’s (grantor’s) ownership. The seller is responsible for any and all covenants.

Special warranty deeds, on the other hand, provide slightly fewer buyer rights than regular warranty deeds. Both the buyer and the seller are in some way affected by this document. Special warranties do this by only making the grantor liable for covenants and faults with the property that existed at the time they held it. Like ordinary warranty deeds, it does not cover the entire history of the property, leaving the grantee liable for any legal claims, liens, or covenants that existed prior to the last owner’s tenure.

What Is the Difference Between Title Insurance and a Warranty Deed?

A title company will do a title search and look through public records to find any problems or mistakes that may have been made. If there is a fault in the title or if a claim is made against the title, the new owner of the property is able to hold the previous owner liable. This is basically because of the promises and disclosures contained in the general warranty deed. A general warranty deed only covers a limited number of potential claims, whereas title insurance protects against a far larger variety of claims, such as competing wills for an estate or tax liens.

What is the Most Common Type of Home Ownership?

The fee simple absolute ownership structure is by far the most typical type of property ownership. The following characteristics are associated with the fee-simple form of property ownership: The holder of a title in fee-simple enjoys full possessory rights both now and in the future for an unlimited period of time. There are no restrictions placed on the capacity to inherit it.

FAQ

Is warranty deed same as title?

Does a Warranty Deed Mean a Clear Title? A warranty deed is a higher level of protection produced by the seller upon the real estate closing. It includes a full legal description of the property and confirms the title is clear and free from all liens, encumbrances, or title defects.

Is warranty deed same as deed of trust?

Both a warranty deed and deed of trust are used to transfer the title of a property from one person to another. However, the difference between these two contracts is who is protected. As you now know, a deed of trust protects the beneficiary (lender). A warranty deed, on the other hand, protects the property owner.

Who holds the title deeds to a property?

The title deeds to a property with a mortgage are usually kept by the mortgage lender. They will only be given to you once the mortgage has been paid in full. But, you can request copies of the deeds at any time.

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