Types of Property Deeds: Deeds are legal documents that transfer the ownership of an asset (such as property) from one person to another; however, there are different types of property deeds for slightly different purposes. These are the most common types of property deeds:
Often used for residential real estate sales, a Warranty Deed acts as a guarantee to the buyer that the seller has the right to sell the property, and that the property is free of debt or other liens. The seller must defend the title against any and all other claims, and compensate the buyer for any unsettled debts or problems.
Special Warranty Deed
Differing from a Warranty Deed, the seller's guarantee does not cover the property's entire history. Generally, the seller only guarantees against problems or claims created during the seller's ownership of the property. A Special Warranty Deed is often used in commercial property transactions or residential real estate sales.
Quit Claim Deed
Most often used by family members, divorcing spouses, and people well-acquainted with each other, a Quit Claim Deed allows one party to transfer property rights and claims to another party. Usually there is no monetary exchange. The extent and authority of the grantor's interest or claim to the property is unspecified, and the grantee is not provided with a guarantee.
Bargain and Sale Deed
Typically used in residential real estate sales or sales of court-seized properties, the Bargain and Sale Deed transfers ownership of a property from the seller to the buyer. It generally does not guarantee to the buyer that the seller owns the property free and clear. A Bargain and Sale Deed resembles a Quit Claim Deed, but the property is sold rather than relinquished.
A Grant Deed transfers interest in a property from the seller to the buyer in exchange for an agreed-upon price. While the Grant Deed guarantees that the seller owns the property and is legally able to sell it free of debt, it does not provide a guarantee against defects of title (unlike the Special and General Warranty Deed). This type of deed is commonly used for residential real estate sales.
If you need more help deciding which type of property deed to use, it's a good idea to discuss it with your closing agent at the title company.
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