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
If you're dreading moving to your new house because this can mean spending even more money, you're not alone. Luckily, there are plenty of ways you can save money on your move.

How to Save Money While Moving

After buying a home, you may be tired of the whole process. With that said, you're still not quite done. In fact, there's still quite a big step you still have to take. Moving can require time, energy, and some money, so it makes sense that you're not fully looking forward to it. If money is your biggest concern, the tips below can help make it less of a worry.

Do All You Can

Before you start doing anything for your move, make sure you've checked out all of the resources available that can make moving less of a burden for your bank account. This includes comparing moving company rates, checking out what it costs to rent a moving truck, and even the price of shipping some items. If you're moving because of work, then it's definitely worth asking your new employer if they can give you some assistance when it comes to relocation fees. The worst that can happen is that they'll say no. In an ideal situation, they'll cover a large portion of it, but you won't know unless you ask.

Move During the Off-Season

Many people don't realize it, but there is an off-season when it comes to moving. People move all year long, but most moves occur during the late spring and summer. This may be because summer vacation gives people more time away from work and school, meaning these activities aren't interrupted. Moving company rates during these seasons can be much higher, so, if possible, try to schedule your move for the off-season. You're better off moving during the months between October and April if possible.

Pick Your Moving Day Carefully

Not only will the season affect the rates of movers and even renting a moving truck, but the day of the week you choose for your move can also impact prices. Most people choose to move during the weekend because this is when they have more time. This can mean higher rates as well as a harder time finding a service that is available. Weekends during the summer can be booked well in advance, so keep this in mind. Because of this, you'll be better off moving on a weekday. If needed, consider taking a day off of work to take care of moving and take advantage of the fact that your children will be at school during the day. If you haven't closed on your dream home yet, keep in mind the importance of title insurance in Fort Myers. If you're not sure what this is for, you can learn more about it by contacting the title insurance experts at Schutt Law at (239) 540-7007.

Get Rid of Clutter

You may think it's easier to pack up your entire home and move all of your things to your new space than it is to declutter before your move. This, however, means you'll be moving tons of things you don't actually need. Since movers can often charge by hours, having less stuff can mean fewer hours spent packing and loading up the moving truck. Before you pack those items you know you won't need or use, make a conscious effort to get rid of the clutter. If you have items that have hardly been used, you can even try selling them to make some cash that can help with your move.

Find Packing Materials in Your Home

Purchasing packing materials can feel like a waste of money. It oftentimes is since you can use items you already have. When it comes to boxes, you can ask around for lightly used boxes or ask your grocery store to donate boxes they don't need. If you know you'll be needing packing peanuts, save the ones you get in the packages you order in the mail. You can also use old newspapers, magazines, and even the towels you have in your home to wrap fragile items.

Do the Moving Yourself

If you don't have the money to spend on hiring movers, that's not a problem. Save some money by taking care of the work yourself. You can rent a moving truck that is affordable and pack your items into yourself and with the help of friends. Just make sure you have your items packed and ready to go when you get the truck since renters can often charge by the hour.

Purchase Title Insurance in Fort Myers

Be sure title insurance in Fort Myers is a part of your plans when buying a home. The title insurance experts at Schutt Law can tell you all about it. Give them a call at (239) 540-7007 to get your questions answered.