AZ Title Company Should Record Quit Claim Deed To Transfer Home Interest

An unmarried couple purchased a home in Scottsdale five years ago. They had each been paying one-half of the monthly mortgage payment. They had been arguing constantly mostly because of financial difficulties relating to the mortgage payments on the house. Although there may be some equity in the home, they are probably “upside-down” on the home. His parents don’t like the girlfriend, and would help him make the mortgage payments if he was the only person on the home’s title. The girlfriend is willing to quit claim her interest in the home. She bought a quit claim deed form at a stationery store. If she signs this quit claim deed before a notary public, and he records the quit claim deed, will he be the sole owner of the home or will they need to consult a real estate law attorney?

If this quit claim deed is recorded, they should be the sole owner of the home. In general, however, no one should ever transfer any interest in a home or other real property without procuring title insurance. Before a title company will furnish title insurance, they will furnish a commitment for a title insurance policy. This commitment will show any liens that have to be paid before a “clear” title insurance policy can be issued. For example, if the girlfriend has a $20,000 credit card judgment, and the quit claim deed to him from her is recorded, this $20,000 judgment would be a lien against the entire home, not just the girlfriend’s one-half interest in the home. In addition to “clear” title, a title company will require the proper form of the quit claim deed and would require the recording of an affidavit of property value and any other necessary documentation.

Note: If they do not use a title company, and there is a mistake in the form or recording of the quit claim deed, this mistake will have to be corrected when you want to sell the home in a few years. At that time, however, he may not be able to locate her or she may not be willing to cooperate in signing any documentation. You would then have to contact an Arizona real estate law attorney to file a quiet title lawsuit.


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