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 your home is feeling small, there are plenty of ways to make it appear and feel larger. Check out these tips from Schutt Law to transform your home into a more spacious area in no time.

If you're buying a new home, you're not protected if you don't have title insurance in Fort Myers. To learn more about title insurance, contact the experts at Schutt Law. Give them a call at (239) 540-7007 to get your questions answered.

Easy Ways to Make Your Home Look Larger

If you found that you're starting to feel cramped in your home or it appears like there isn't as much space as you once thought, you're not alone. Plenty of people wish they had more room in their homes. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to make your home feel and appear more spacious.

Remove the Clutter

The first step to making your home look and feel larger is removing all the clutter. Whether you just moved in or you've been there a while, clutter is inevitable. Unfortunately, it's easy to collect items without realizing they're making your space feel cramped and untidy. Take your time assessing each room in your home and decide what items you can dispose of. Some of it might be simple to get rid of, like old mail that has piled up, but others can be harder to let go of. When doing this, think of what items you don't actually use and won't miss once they're gone. For example, you may have some chairs in the way, but you've never used them. You don't have to throw them out, but rather, see if they work in another space. If they don't, consider selling them or donating them, so they don't go to waste.

Use Light Colors

The colors you use to decorate your home can have a heavy impact on how space feels. Do your best to stick to light shades when decorating since these colors reflect light better. This effect will give a room a softer and more open feeling. Dark colors will absorb the light, making rooms look smaller and less welcoming. Pick a light or neutral shade for the walls and build up from there. Your curtains, flooring, and furniture should also be a lighter color, giving the room an open and airy feeling.

Let in Some Light

Light will open up a space and give it a warmer and more welcoming feel. This can help your home feel more capacious, so be sure to let in plenty of light during the day. Open up your curtains or use sheer ones that let in soft, filtered light. Artificial light can also help, so be sure all of your light fixtures are working. Use floor lamps or table lamps to give your home more light after dark and keep it feeling warm and open.

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.

Use Mirrors in Your Home

Since mirrors are great at reflecting light, they can really help your home look bigger. These also make great decor and are functional, so they're a win all around. A large, floor-length mirror can give the allusion of a bigger room, so don't be afraid to place one in a room you feel is especially small looking. It's a great idea to place a mirror on a wall opposite a window since this will bring more light into the area and reflect an open space. This can open up the room and make it look bigger.

Add Storage Space

Storage space can be hard to come by in a smaller home, but it's essential, especially if you want to hide bulky items like linens and large appliances. If your home doesn't have a ton of storage, do your best to find furniture that gives you more options or that is multifunctional. For example, a bed with drawers can give you more space in which to hide your linens or your winter clothes. Look for ottomans that work as a place to sit, but that also offer hidden storage. Using floor to ceiling bookshelves is excellent because they can make a wall look taller while also giving you tons of space to store and display books, plants, and other items you love.

Pick Your Furniture

Finally, don't focus on buying small furniture for a small space because you may end up getting more pieces that are smaller. This can look untidy and cramped. Don't be afraid to buy larger items, but fewer of them so they don't clutter the space. It's also a good idea to purchase furniture pieces with legs that lift your items off the ground. Even if the legs are short, the fact that they're lifted off the ground can help your home feel more airy and open.

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.