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Tom Grant – Colonial Title and Abstract Service











Tom Grant
Colonial Title and Abstract Service
19 Route 10
Suite 10
Succasunna, New Jersey 07867

Office: (973) 267-4600 x114
Mobile: (973) 207-1659
email: tgrant@@colonial-title.com

Title Insurance – The Choice is Yours

What does “title to real estate” mean?

Think of title to real estate as your exclusive right to own and possess the land you buy. A defect in the title to your land means that someone other than you, the owner, may assert a competing right or interest in your land.

What can cause a defect in title?

  • A past deed conveying title to your home described the wrong property, or was not properly witnessed or notarized. Or the deed was not signed by all necessary parties, such as a spouse, co-owner or legal heir of a past deceased owner.
  • A deed conveying title to your land was not recorded. To convey good title, a deed must be registered in the county land records where the property is located.
  • Prior documents affecting your home’s title, such as deeds, mortgages, and lien releases were signed by someone without legal authority to execute them, or they were prepared incorrectly rendering them invalid or voidable.
  • Documents, including deeds, are sometimes signed under a Power of Attorney, which must also be recorded in the county land records. If a Power of Attorney is not recorded, or does not grant the proper authority to act, or was expired when used, the document executed under that Power of Attorney may be invalid.
  • A past deed, mortgage, or lien release was forged or signed under duress.
  • A past mortgage, judgment, or tax lien was never released, or was released incorrectly, giving the creditor or taxing authority the right to attempt collection of a past owner’s debt by demanding payment from you, or forcing you to sell your home.

What does title insurance do for me?

Title insurance protects you after you buy your home against title defects that occurred before you bought your home. The policy that protects you, the owner, is called the Owners Title Policy, and remains in effect for as long as you or your heirs own the property. If you mortgage your home, your lender will also require that you buy title insurance to protect its collateral, your home.

The Lenders Title Policy remains in effect only as long as the specific mortgage insured by the policy remains a lien on your property. That’s why, when you refinance, even if you use the same lender, you must buy another Lenders Title Policy (at a reduced premium) to cover the new loan, but your Owners Title Policy remains in effect.

Who buys my title insurance policy?

Typically you, the homebuyer, pays for the policies that protect you and your lender.

Who actually orders my title policy?

In New Jersey, local custom dictates who orders your title insurance. In some parts of the state, it is your attorney. In others, it is your real estate agent. Other times, your mortgage lender or builder (if you’re buying a new home) orders title insurance.

If I can choose my mortgage lender, my home inspector, and my homeowners insurance agent, why can’t I choose my title company?

You can, and should choose your title company.

To the detriment of home buying public, most New Jersey title companies do not market directly to homebuyers. They view their customer as the real estate agent, attorney or loan officer who places the order for title insurance. Colonial Title takes a different approach. Colonial Title believes YOU are their customer. Why? Because the title policy protects you and your lender, and you are the one who pays for those policies. Not the agent, not the attorney, not the broker. But you, the home-buyer.

How much does title insurance cost?

Title insurance rates are strictly regulated by the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance. The higher your home’s purchase price, the higher your title insurance premium. One title company cannot charge more than another for the same insured amount. Unlike homeowners insurance, a policy you pay for every year, you only pay for title insurance once, usually at closing.

Tell me more about Colonial Title.

Based in Morris County, Colonial Title and Abstract Service, LLC is one of the largest title insurance agencies in New Jersey. Insuring homebuyers and homeowners in all 21 counties for over 30 years, the agency’s three owners, Eugene J. Riesebeck, Michael Grant and Sal DeStefano, have a wealth of practical experience.

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