FAQS


CLOSING

• What is closing? A real estate closing is when the buyer and seller sign documents from the lender, settlement agent, and title insurance company. These documents include the note, mortgage, deed, and affidavits, to name a few. After document execution, recording, and disbursement of funds, title to the property is conveyed, and is "closed."

• What do I need to give you before closing? We will need your personal information such as legal name, marital status, social security number, payoff loan information, any applicable estate information, divorce information, and bankruptcy information. We also need information which will appear on the settlement statement including termite letters, soil treatments, home warranties, and lender-approved invoices.

• What do I need to bring to closing? Your current driver's license, any special documents we request (such as a former owner's death certificate), and original powers of attorney.

• If you need to bring money to closing
, amounts up to $9,999.99 may be brought to closing in the form of a certified or cashier's check. Amounts of $10,000 or more need to be wired to us. We do not accept ACH transfers or credit cards.

• Who signs at closing? If you are a seller, and your name appears on the deed, you will need to sign closing documents. If your spouse lives in the property, he or she will need to sign closing documents as well, even if her name is not on the deed. If you are purchasing, you will need to sign, and if your spouse will occupy the property, she will need to sign. Some exceptions may exist for purchasers. If you have questions, please contact our office.

• Where is closing? Our office has multiple locations. Please contact us to find out where your closing is taking place. Our offices are located at: 3501 Memorial Parkway SW Suite 400 | Huntsville, AL 35801 and 475 Providence Main Street Suite 302 | Huntsville, AL 35806. Click here for directions.

• What do I need to do after closing? If you are a seller, terminate your homeowner's insurance and make sure that your mortgage company has your forwarding address to send you any remaining funds from your escrow account. If you are a buyer, apply for any property tax exemptions, such as homestead. To apply for your homestead exemption, you will need to take your recorded deed to the county tax collector or tax assessor in the county where the property is located and notify them that you are occupying the property. The recorded deed is provided at closing or it may be mailed to the buyers' new home after it is recorded. If you would like your deed mailed to a different address, please let us know.

REFINANCING


• How does refinancing work? At closing, we will payoff your existing mortgages, if any, and have you sign a note, mortgage, and affidavits. If the property is your residence, there will be a 3 business day waiting period after signing before the transaction is complete, and we can, at that point, disburse funds to payoff your mortgage(s).

• What do I need to do prior to closing? We will need your personal information such as legal name, marital status, social security number, payoff loan information, any applicable estate information, divorce information, and bankruptcy information. We also need information which will appear on the settlement statement including termite letters and soil treatments.

• What do I need to bring to closing? Your current driver's license, any special documents we request (such as a former owner's death certificate), and original powers of attorney, if any. If you are doing a second mortgage, consult your lender as to whether your first mortgage will be paid off.

• If you need to bring money to closing, amounts up to $9,999.99 may be in certified funds. Amounts of $10,000 or more need to be wired to us.

• Who signs at closing? All property owners will need to sign, and if your spouse occupies the property, he/she may need to sign even if he/she is not on title. If you have questions, please contact our office.

• Where is closing? Our office has several locations. Please contact us to find out where your closing is taking place. Our offices are located at: 3501 Memorial Parkway SW Suite 400 | Huntsville, AL 35801 and 475 Providence Main Street Suite 302 | Huntsville, AL 35806. Click here for directions.

LEASING


• What is a lease? A lease is an agreement wherein the property owner allows someone to possess his or her property for an amount agreed to by the property owner (lessor) and the occupant (lessee).

• What is a lease purchase? A lease purchase is a lease wherein the lessor agrees to allow a lessee to either purchase the property or have the option to purchase the property. Lease purchases have inherent risks and are not ideal for conveying an interest in real property. Please contact our office if you wish to have a lease purchase as they should only be used in certain scenarios.

TITLE INSURANCE


• What is title insurance? Title insurance protects real estate owners and lenders against any property loss or damage they might experience because of liens, encumbrances or defects in the title to the property. Each title insurance policy is subject to specific terms, conditions and exclusions. 

• What is a title search? A title search is a search of the public land records or the real property records contained within a title plant to determine property ownership, any applicable liens, and any applicable restrictions and easements.

• What is a title abstract? A title abstract is a collection of documents that shows the chain of property ownership from the original patent from the federal government up to the current property owner. However, a title abstract is not title insurance and does not provide the same protections as title insurance.

FORECLOSURES


• What is a foreclosure? A foreclosure occurs when the mortgaging homeowner (mortgagor) fails to make his or her payments, and the lender holding the note and mortgage sells the home at the courthouse in a public auction. The property can be purchased at that public sale by the original lender, an individual, or a company (usually an investor).

• What is the right of redemption? For one year after the sale of the property, the property may be redeemed by a prior owner, prior judgment holder, or a prior mortgage holder. After one year from the date of the foreclosure sale at the courthouse, that right is extinguished. The State of Alabama has recently shortened this timeline to six months for homestead property wherein the mortgage was executed on or after January 1, 2016. Please contact our office for more information.

• What is a redemption bond? Title insurance does not cover rights of redemption. Title insurance will insure a subsequent lender for rights of redemption if a redemption bond is purchased. Most redemption bonds cover the title insurance company and not the new homeowner.

POWERS OF ATTORNEY

• What is a power of attorney? A power of attorney is a document that grants an individual the authority to act on behalf of another individual. For powers of attorney to be used in a real estate transaction, they need to be approved by the title insurer and the lender providing financing on the transaction.

• When is a power of attorney unacceptable? Powers of attorney cannot be used when the principal is deceased. Powers of attorney cannot be used for trusts, estates, companies, or corporations. Please contact our office if you have any questions.

COVENANTS & RESTRICTIONS


• Covenants and Restrictions are rules about the use of real property. Once recorded, they apply to the land and usually state who has the authority to enforce the rules. Restrictions can be found in deeds or in a separate recorded document.

• How do I find my covenants and restrictions? Homeowner's associations usually provide current covenants and rules upon request, but you can always call our office. We will need the property address, county that the property is located in, and the neighborhood that the property is located in.

RELOCATION TRANSACTIONS


• What is a relocation transaction? Corporations and companies, to ease the stress of moving their employees, may use a relocation company to handle the transaction for the employee. We regularly complete relocation transactions. Please call our office if you have a relocation company contract.

REO - REAL ESTATE OWNED

• What is an REO transaction? REO means Real Estate Owned. REO transactions mean that the seller (property owner) is an entity, company, or government agency. Some examples include: banks, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Veterans Administration (VA), and Fannie Mae.

• What happens in an REO transaction? REO transactions vary depending on who owns the property. As a general rule, on REO transactions, the seller does not attend closing, and documents are sent to the settlement agent from the seller via overnight delivery. In addition, most REO transactions require that the documents be provided to the seller several business days in advance of settlement.

*We do not accept ACH transfers or credit cards.



Better Business Bureau - Paulus Title
Designed by Zack Nichols