Title Insurance Real Estate Lawyers in Vancouver
Experienced legal team provides you with knowledgeable guidance
If you buy a home in B.C., you receive a certified property title showing that you are the rightful owner. In addition, a property title can also list any registered mortgages and/or liens, easements on the property, and provide a great deal of other useful information.
At Castle Law LLP, our attorneys have extensive experience helping buyers and sellers navigate residential and commercial property transactions in Canada. We can perform rigorous due diligence to ensure a prospective property is worth your time.
Additionally, we can assist you a wide range of title insurance matters including survey errors, encroachment issues, current undisclosed liens, and any other issue that may impede your ability to obtain clear ownership of a property or structure.
What is title insurance in B.C.?
The basic function of title insurance is to provide protection for homeowners and lenders against issues relating to a property’s title or ownership. Typically, lenders in Canada require that you purchase title insurance to cover the cost of the original mortgage amount. If you plan on buying or refinancing property in Vancouver, speak to an attorney about the steps ahead.
What does title insurance cover?
For lenders, title insurance is especially important because it offers coverage against a wide range of fraudulent behaviors.
Given the digital nature of the world, hackers and identity thieves are able to obtain valid identification and claim ownership of a property. But the scam doesn’t end there. The fraudster then works with realtors and attorneys while pretending to be the rightful owner, and proceeds to sell the property for profit.
An identity may also work with a lender (using stolen, valid ID), to obtain a new mortgage on the property. In both scenarios, the rightful owner is left in the dark while the hacker or identity thief makes off with mortgage funds or profits from the home sale. Title insurance can also offer protection again attorney fraud or spousal impersonation.
Generally, in such cases, the Assurance Fund of the Land Title Office reimburses the rightful owner. However, recovering the stolen funds can be time-consuming and expensive. Obtaining title insurance is faster and more affordable.
Title insurance can also cover:
- Existing work orders
- Violations of municipal by-laws
- Encroachments onto an adjoining property
- Lack of legal access to the property
- Property tax arrears
- Legal status of any septic system
- Unpaid strata assessments
- Forced removal by a governmental authority of a structure built without a required building permit
- Zoning and setback noncompliance
- Gap coverage
How much does title insurance cost in B.C.
For any property valued in Canada under $1,000,000.00, the price of title insurance is usually $225.00 — $175.00 goes to the Lender Policy and $50.00 goes to the Owner Policy. It is also important to understand that every $1,000.00 over the sale price of $1,000,000 will increase the cost of title insurance by $.90. The good news is that purchasing title insurance is a one-time cost — there are no annual premiums.
Is title insurance mandatory in B.C.?
You are not required to obtain title insurance in Canada unless your lender requires it, and many do. Like other types of insurance policies, it is generally optional and is intended for individuals who wish to avoid the issues mentioned above. Additionally, title insurance can be helpful if you plan on buying a property with known encroachment issues or improvements made without a permit. Ultimately, you should speak with an attorney about the cost and benefits of purchasing title insurance in Vancouver.
What risks (does title insurance) cover?
If you plan on buying, selling, leasing, or mortgaging a property, residential title insurance can offer you protection against seen and unseen issues. Here is a list of common risks it can protect you against:
- Undisclosed title defects
- Attorney negligence or legal errors regarding title risks
- Liens — unpaid mortgages, taxes, utilities, or condo fees
- Fraud, survey, or record mistakes
- Encroachment issues
- The limbo period of a property from when it is purchased to the official government registration of the property
Like buying home or life insurance, purchasing title insurance requires research and consideration. Whether you are looking to buy, sell, or lease residential property in B.C., hiring a skilled attorney can help you navigate the road ahead.
Contact Castle Law LLP, for help with title insurance in Vancouver
Castle Law LLP, provides comprehensive legal support for all real estate transactions in B.C. Our knowledgeable lawyers can assist you from day one of your home buying or selling journey. We can review your situation and help you make an informed decision regarding the purchase of title insurance. For more information about title insurance in Vancouver, or to discuss real estate with one of our experienced attorneys, call or contact us online today.
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