What options does a home buyer have if the deed to the home is the subject of a probate matter?

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What options does a home buyer have if the deed to the home is the subject of a probate matter?

I entered into an “as-is” contract to cash purchase a home on 05/06 with a 07/01 closing. It was discovered on 06/03 that there were issues regarding the ownership of the home as it was passed on to the heirs 6 years ago. The individual listed on the county records as the owner is the PR of the estate. The attorneys representing the seller are trying to get all the heirs to sign off on the deeds in order to transfer a marketable title to me. Since this was never done properly when the original owners passed away it has become a burdensome task. What type of time table is acceptable?

Asked on July 15, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Florida

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Typically when a person buys a property "as is" this terms pertains to its physical condiiton, not its legal title. Grant deeds in this country (as opposed to quit claim deeds) are warrants that the person giving the buyer clear and free title to the property where there are no others claiming ownership interest to.

It appears that the purchase you want for free and clear title solely to you has some title issues where certain heirs might need to disclaim any interest in the property before free and clear title can be conveyed to you.

If you want to close escrow in the near future without further delay, you need to demand a date certain to close escrow and if that does not happen, threaten to rescind the contract due to the inability to give you free and clear title. If that happens, you would get your deposit back if any.

If you want the property and are willing to wait to get the title issue resolved, you could suggest rescinding the purchase contract, but extend escrow's close in exchange for a reduced purchase price due to the seller's delay.


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