Phone: 239.540.7007
Real Estate
Home Closing 101
Do you know what to expect on closing day?
Most people don’t. And that can lead to some uneasiness. But help is here. The American Land Title Association, or ALTA, has created a website featuring information every homebuyer can use to help familiarize themselves with the closing process before walking into the closing
The Home Closing 101 Site
At Home Closing 101 you will find information you can use to prepare yourself for closing. The site covers topics such as title insurance, escrow fees and closing costs. So when the time comes to sign on the dotted line you’ll feel fully prepared.

Home Closing 101 is especially helpful for first time buyers. Buying a house is an exciting time and the more you know about the process, the more relaxed you’ll be going through it. Spend a little time on the site and you can walk through the home buying process, receiving explanations for each step and helpful hints on how to find the right people to help you on your journey to homeownership.

Click here to start learning about the home buying process.
What Is American Land Title Association (ALTA)?
Founded in 1907, ALTA is the national trade association and voice of the title insurance industry. ALTA members search, review and insure land titles to protect home buyers and mortgage lenders who invest in real estate.

ALTA members advocate safe and efficient transfer of real estate and insist on high standards when searching land title records and preparing insurance documents. The industry seeks to eliminate risk before insuring, which provides homebuyers with the best possible chance of avoiding land title problems. But, title difficulties can and do occur, and members offer both Owner’s and Lender’s title insurance policies as effective safeguards.

Click here to visit the ALTA website.
About Stewart Title Insurance
Stewart (NYSE: STC) is a leading provider of real estate services, including global residential and commercial title insurance, escrow and settlement services, lender services, underwriting, specialty insurance and other solutions that facilitate successful real estate transactions. Stewart offers personalized service, industry expertise and customized solutions for virtually any type of real estate transaction, through our direct operations, network of approved agencies and other companies within the Stewart family. Through a focus on integrity, smart growth and conservative management, Stewart remains committed to serving our customers, innovating and improving to meet their needs in an ever-changing market. 

Please click on the link below for more information:
Owning real estate is one of the most precious values of freedom in this country. You want the assurance that the property you are buying will be yours. Other than your mortgage holder, no one else should have any claims or restrictions against your home.

Title insurance is issued after a careful examination of the public records. But even the most thorough search cannot absolutely assure that no title faults are present, despite the knowledge and experience of professional title examiners. In addition to matters shown by public records, other title problems may exist that cannot be disclosed in a search. Title insurance eliminates any risks and losses caused by faults in title from an event that occurred before you owned the property.

Title insurance is different from other types of insurance in that it protects you, the insured, from a loss that may occur from matters or faults from the past. Other types of insurance such as auto, life, or health cover you against losses that may occur in the future. Title insurance does not protect against any future faults, but does protect you from risks or undiscovered interests. Another difference is that you pay a one-time premium for a policy that remains effective until the property is sold to a new owner - even if that doesn't occur for decades.
What is a Lender's Policy?

A lender's policy, also known as a loan policy or a mortgage policy, protects the lender against loss due to unknown title defects. It also protects the lender's interest from certain matters which may exist, but may not be known at the time of the sale.

This policy only protects the lender's interest. It does not protect the purchaser. That is why a real estate purchaser needs an owner's policy.
What is an owner's policy?

An owner's policy protects you, the purchaser, against a loss that may occur from a fault in the ownership or interest you have in the property. You should protect the equity in your new home with a title policy.

What does an owner's policy provide?

- Protection from financial loss due to demands that may be charged against the title to your home, up to the cost of the title policy.
- Payment of legal costs if the title insurer has to defend your title against a covered claim.
- Payment of successful claims against the title to your home covered by the policy, up to the cost of the policy.
Why the seller needs to provide title insurance?

Any purchaser will need evidence that his investment in your property is free of title defects. The title insurance policy that you provide the purchaser is a guarantee that you are selling a clear title to your real estate, unencumbered by any legal attachments that might limit or jeopardize ownership. It will reassure your purchaser that he or she is protected from any risks or losses and could help you close your deal.
Why the buyer needs title insurance?

Without title insurance, you may not be fully protected against errors in public records, hidden defects not disclosed by the public records, or mistakes in examination of the title. As a result, you may be held fully accountable for any prior liens, judgments or claims brought against your new property. If this should occur, your title policy insures that you will be defended at no cost against all covered claims up to the amount of the policy.
How much does title insurance cost?

The insurance commission approves and controls the premiums for title insurance policies. The premiums are paid only once and the cost depends upon the purchase price of the property and the policy amount must be equal to the purchase price.
What does title insurance protect from?
  • Fraud
  • Adverse possession
  • Rights of divorced parties
  • Deeds by minors
  • Undisclosed Heirs
  • Errors in tax records
  • False affidavits of death or heirshipProbate matters
  • Deeds and wills by persons of unsound mind
  • Conveyances by undisclosed divorced spouses
  • Forfeitures of real property due to criminal acts
  • Deeds by persons falsely representing their marital status
  • Documents executed by a revoked or expired Power of Attorney
  • Defective acknowledgements due to improper or expired notarization
  • Mistakes and omissions resulting in improper abstracting
  • Forged deeds, mortgages, wills, releases and other documents
  • False impersonation of the true land owner
The mortgage process is long and complicated. There are plenty of situations that can affect your loan results. Now it's not the time to be making any mistakes. Here is a list of the most common mortgage mistakes so you can avoid them and get a better deal.

Mistakes to Avoid When Applying for Mortgage in Fort Myers

First time home buyers make plenty of mistakes in the process of buying a house. Chances are that you're taking out a mortgage loan to be able to afford the new house. The mortgage process opens a whole new branch of potential setbacks and mistakes. You can avoid making some of them by following this short guide Schutt Law has prepared for you.

Ignoring the Costs of Being a Home Owner

Yes, being a home owner does have tons of benefits. However, it does come at a cost...several costs actually. If you’re a first time home buyer, you might be surprised at how expensive it is to own a home. You need to consider that a house requires constant maintenance, new furniture, and it also needs utilities. Those a lot of things to be spending on. Let’s not forget that property taxes are another thing you should be adding to your list of homeownership expenses. Before committing to a mortgage loan, you need to evaluate how much you can afford to continue living comfortably while paying off all your debts.

Failing to Get Informed

This is basically what everyone knows about mortgage: you ask for it, the lender gives you a background check, you get your loan (or not), and you have to pay monthly fees. A mistake many home buyers make is not digging deeper into the mortgage process. You need to learn about what you’re getting yourself into, so you can make the best decisions. A mortgage specialist should talk to you about the process in a clear manner. They will give you a step by step outline of what is expected from them from application to closing. You shouldn’t trust a lender who can’t provide that information, but you also shouldn’t rely solely on them to get that information. Do some research about mortgage before you ask for it.

Not Shopping Around for a Lender

A mortgage is just like any other major purchase. You need to compare different the options before you settle for a creditor. Taking your time to find the best possible mortgage rate can save you thousands of dollars. Even the tiniest difference in the interest rate can make a huge difference. About 75% home buyers apply with just one lender. Don’t be intimidated by the mortgage transaction process, evaluate several options before settling for one and do your research about interest rates and added fees. During the process, the lender will talk to you about getting title insurance. They need to feel safe in their investment after all. So give Schutt Law a call at (239) 540-7007 to get your title insurance process started.

Changing Jobs

The job offer for a new job may be great, but it's not a good idea to do it in the middle of the mortgage process. It makes the lender re-evaluate the security of your new job position and your possibility of keeping up with your payments. Ask the new employer if it's possible to start the job after you close on the house. Also, the mortgage lender evaluates your employment history. They look for stability. So jumping from one job to the next doesn't look good.

Getting a New Credit Card

If you're going to be asking for a mortgage loan, you should be in full savings mode. Now is not the time to acquire a new credit card and create more debt. A new credit card can affect your mortgage process, even if you remain under the spending limit.  Getting a new card means you can "afford" big expenses. Noticeable spending changes reflect on your credit report and can affect your interest rate. Just wait until your loan goes through to take out a new card.

Blindly Signing Every Document

You should never sign any document before reading and understanding it thoroughly. Be sure to read the terms and conditions of your loan, and don't just take someone's word for it. Find out if there is any scenario where your mortgage rate changes before you commit.

Deciding to Skip Title Insurance in Fort Myers

It's highly unlikely that you're going to skip getting title insurance because it will probably be part of your lender's requirements. The bank needs some sort of assurance that their interest in the property is protected if you miss your mortgage payments.  When you call Schutt Law to ask for your lender's title insurance policy, get one for yourself. If you're interested in learning more about title insurance and how you can get yours in Fort Myers, just call (239) 540-7007.