SCHUTT LAW FIRM, P.A.
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:
http://www.stewart.com/en.html
WHY TITLE INSURANCE?
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
09/04/2020
If you're getting ready to sell your home by giving it some upgrades, there are some projects you're better off skipping. Check out these home improvements that won't get the returns you're after.



Skip These Home Improvement Projects

Many homeowners who are planning to sell their home don't put it on the market right away. Instead, they start off by making some improvements and adjustments to their home so that it sells for a higher price. If you're deciding what projects to take on before listing your home, you may want to skip the ones that don't typically bring the returns you're after.

Adding a Swimming Pool

Most people love swimming pools and the idea of having one right in the backyard is great. The reality is that it may not be as simple to maintain and families with small children may be wary about having one at home. Even if people were to be interested in having a pool, you have to consider how much it would cost to have a pool installed in your yard versus how much they would pay for the home. While it can add some value to the final appraisal price, this doesn't mean it'll offset the cost you paid to get it.

Converting Your Garage

A converted garage can look great and offer even more indoor space for larger families, but these types of upgrades aren't always going to be seen as a good thing. In fact, a home appraiser may not even see this space as more 'livable' indoor space if it doesn't have windows, heating, a proper roof, and other necessities. In many cases, potential buyers won't be happy about this conversion either. Since a covered parking space is often something people want, taking this away from the home can lead potential buyers to lose interest in the property. Think about it this way, would you want to park your car in the driveway through the hot summer or on snowy days? The damage this can cause to your will mean even more repair fees, making you wish you had a covered space to store your car.

New Flooring

Flooring can be a tricky one because there are some cases where this may work. In most cases, the flooring won't make too much of a difference because buyers are likely to replace it after moving in, meaning you could have kept your old flooring and had the same results. Since new flooring can be quite pricey, it may be better to skip this and instead focus on getting your current flooring to look its best. If, however, your current flooring situation is awful and you're worried potential buyers will lose interest because of it, then new flooring may be worth the investment. Be sure to purchase title insurance in Fort Myers to protect your investment. To learn all about the importance of title insurance, contact the friendly experts at Schutt Law at (239) 540-7007.

High-End Upgrades

High-end upgrades seem like a good idea because who doesn't want a brand new kitchen with the latest gadgets and appliances? The reality is that it's still a kitchen, so with or without the high-end countertops and appliances, buyers will simply see a nice kitchen. They won't understand how much was invested in this space, so they won't want to pay what it's actually worth. Also, don't forget about the rest of your home. If your kitchen is fully renovated, brand new, and super modern but the rest of your home isn't, this won't look good. In fact, it can be detrimental to overall price of your home.

Over the Top Landscaping

Everyone wants a lush, green yard, but that doesn't mean you have to redesign the whole exterior area. A nice yard can give your home great curb appeal and draw more attention to it, but this can be achieved with some basic gardening and lawn care. Hold back on investing too much into your outdoor spaces with luxury items and exotic plants that the new homeowner may not even like. In many cases, you won't get back what you invested. Instead, focus on keeping your lawn tidy and simple and let the new homeowners decide if they want to make upgrades.

Updated Windows

New windows may look great, but they come at a heavy price. In fact, getting new windows for a home can be very expensive. Instead of doing this, focus on the window frames. If these are looking worn or have issues like leaks, then get these parts replaced. It'll be more cost-effective while making your home more appealing.

Purchase Title Insurance in Fort Myers

Protect your home investment with title insurance in Fort Myers. The title insurance experts at Schutt Law can answer all the questions you may have. Give them a call at (239) 540-7007 to get your questions answered.