Pre-Closing Information

Hazard Home Owner's Insurance Information
Please have your insurance agent fax a copy of the declaration page for your hazard insurance policy (along with a paid receipt or invoice for the first year's premium) to our office prior to closing so that we can ensure that the policy satisfies the lender's requirements.

You are required to bring the original policy (and the paid receipt or invoice for the first year's premium) to the closing.

We would like to recommend that you purchase a survey for your new property. A survey will illustrate the boundaries of the property along with any easements or encroachments that may exist.

As many Lender's & Builders require a survey, it is important that you consult your Lender or Builder before making a decision on whether or not to purchase one. If your Lender or Builder does not require a survey and you wish to order one, please call our office and let us know as soon as possible.

Owner's Title Insurance
An owner's insurance policy is an inexpensive policy that protects you against defects in the title to your property. The policy covers the equity that you have in your property, for as long as you own it. It is highly recommended that you obtain a policy.

When preparing your HUD-1 settlement statement, our office will include a charge for an owner's title insurance policy at line 1110. Should you decide that you do not want to purchase the policy, we will remove the charge from the statement at your request.

You should received your Owner’s Title Insurance Policy at the same time as the original recorded Warranty Deed. The time frame varies depending on which county your property is located within. Three months is the average expected timeframe. If you have not received your Owner’s Title Insurance Policy after three months, please contact our Post Closing department at or by phone 404-257-8885.

Certified Funds
Please bring a certified check to closing for the funds required by your lender. We would like to recommend that these funds be made payable to you. This precaution will help to ensure your protection, should you lose or misplace the check prior to the closing. You may then sign the check over to our law office at closing.

Please bring your driver's license with you to the closing, as a form of identification. Please check with your lender prior to closing to see if the lender is requiring any additional items be brought to the closing.

Receipt of Tax Bills
The tax bills will be mailed out as early as July and as late as December, depending upon the county in which your property is situated. When the lender is escrowing funds for the taxes, the taxpayer should place his loan number on the tax bill and enclose it along with the next installment and forward it to the lender, who will pay the taxes out of the escrow account. IMPORTANT FAILURE TO MAKE A TAX RETURN WILL RESULT IN A 10% PENALTY, FORFEITURE OF HOMESTEAD EXCEPTION, AND WILL INCREASE YOUR MONTHLY PAYMENTS. IF YOUR PROPERTY IS LOCATED WITHIN THE LIMITS OF A CITY, YOU MUST ALSO RETURN IT FOR CITY TAXES.


Why Do I Need Title Insurance?
When you purchase your property there will be an examination of the real estate records in the county where the property is located. This examination will uncover any defects in the chain of title or liens, which may currently be of record. Even with such a thorough review of the title, items may be missed in the public records that could entitle someone else to file an ownership claim to the title of your property. There are situations where even a mere clerical error in the records could affect your ownership. Furthermore, most metro Atlanta counties are behind in recording liens and/or deeds which have already been filed, these would therefore not appear of record.

What Are The Title Risks Which May Arise?
Landowner's rights have a high priority because of the value that is placed on real property. There are others, however, who have rights to a landowner's property. These parties could include Lenders; Leaseholders; Materialmen; and even the State, County, and City where you reside for property taxes. As a new property owner, you may not be aware of any prior claims or risks to the title of your property and, therefore, are vulnerable to such claims. The mere issuance of a Warranty Deed and other documents by the Seller does not provide you with absolute protection and does not absolve other claims to the property. Other issues, which could affect your title, are prior civil lawsuits, divorces, prior personal tax liens and judgments, foreclosures, or bankruptcies of any prior owner.

What Does Title Insurance Cover?
Each title insurance company has different underwriting guidelines and stipulations; however, your title insurance should cover for Legal Defense on any claims against your title and/or in the event a loss is sustained, should protect you up to the full amount of your policy. Your policy amount is usually the full purchase price you paid for your property.

What is the Cost of Title Insurance?
Title Insurance is very inexpensive considering the amount of security you will receive. This is a one-time premium that covers you throughout your ownership of the property. We will be happy to quote you the exact fee involved for your particular property.

How Do I Obtain Title Insurance?
As your Title Insurance Agent, The Law Offices of Sam F. Maguire can provide you with Title Insurance coverage through the following insurers: Stewart Title Insurance Company, Chicago Title Insurance Company, Ticor Title Insurance Company, and First American Title Insurance Company.

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