CLOSINGS AND TITLE INSURANCEReal Estate Closings and Title Insurance, New Smyrna Beach, FL

Residential Closings

It is important to remember that the purchase or sale of your home or business is one of the most important financial transactions in your life. No two real estate closings are the same, and there are no "standard" contracts. Negotiating and preparing real estate contracts requires a deep understanding of contract and real estate law to ensure the final contract will be upheld and your interests will be protected. Along with assisting you in the process of reviewing and/or drafting the contract, JAMES M. KOSMAS, P.A. will customize the contract to meet any particular needs as well as provide counsel to ensure your best interests are met.

Only an attorney can effectively advise a party on matters relating to title and answer legal questions that often arise during the closing process. In addition, retaining the services of a Board Certified Real Estate attorney to represent you and handle your closing often costs no more than, and sometimes less than, a title company closing.

We invite you to call our office about your next closing transaction. Please allow us to explain how we can help make your real estate closing a pleasant, worry-free experience

For Sale by Owner

By selling your home without the help of a real estate agent you may be able to save the 6% commission typically paid to agents on a home sale. On a $250,000 home, that represents a potential savings of over $12,000. Or you can use those savings to offer your home for sale at a lower price, which may help you attract a larger pool of interested buyers and sell your home quicker.

When selling a home by owner, you don't have to leave the house because a real estate agent wants to show it, or clean it every morning before leaving "just in case". You know when potential home buyers are coming, and can therefore prepare accordingly. And when a home buyer makes an offer, there's not all that frustrating back-and-forth telephone tag between real estate agents to reach an agreement. It can be done in minutes, and end with a friendly handshake and smile between the buyer and seller. A quick phone call to JAMES M. KOSMAS, P.A. and we can prepare the contract to what you have agreed to, as well as provide invaluable guidance on matters that you most likely never even thought of. Our primary goal is to protect your interest and provide quality, affordable legal representation in a timely manner.

Mortgage Refinance

You may be tired of making two payments: one for your first mortgage and another for your second. Perhaps it's time to reduce your current interest rate to a lower fixed or adjustable rate. Maybe you have an adjustable rate that you want to convert into a fixed-rate mortgage. You may want to cash out some of your equity, or lower your overall mortgage payment. Whatever the reason, you will want an attorney with the knowledge and experience that will ensure your Mortgage Refinance transaction goes smoothly.

Determining your eligibility for refinancing is similar to the approval process that you went through with your first mortgage. Your lender will consider your income and assets, credit score, other debts, the current value of the property, and the amount you want to borrow. If your credit score has improved, you may be able to get a loan at a lower rate. On the other hand, if your credit score is lower now than when you got your current mortgage, you may have to pay a higher interest rate on a new loan. JAMES M. KOSMAS, P.A., will be able to assist you with determining eligibility and moving forward with a mortgage refinance that is appropriate for you.

Equity Lines

A home equity line of credit is a form of revolving credit in which your home serves as collateral. Because a home often is a consumer's most valuable asset, many homeowners use home equity credit lines only for major items, such as education, home improvements, or medical bills, and choose not to use them for day-to-day expenses.

With a home equity line, you will be approved for a specific amount of credit. Many lenders set the credit limit on a home equity line by taking a percentage (say, 75%) of the home's appraised value and subtracting from that the balance owed on the existing mortgage.

Property Title Search and ExaminationTitle Insurance and Closing Attorney, New Smyrna Beach, FL

Title search and examination comprises a detailed examination of the historical records concerning the property. These include deeds, civil and probate court records, and tax records. The purpose of the search is to verify the seller's right to transfer ownership and to discover any claims, errors, assessments, debts, or other burdens or restrictions on the property.

A thorough and properly executed Title Search and Examination coupled with Title Insurance allows for peace of mind in the knowledge that legal deficiencies will not leave you in a poor financial situation.

Title Insurance

What is title insurance?

Title insurance is your policy of protection against loss if any problems, including unknown problems, results in a claim against your ownership. In extreme cases if a claim is filed against your property, you could lose your entire home and property and still be liable to pay off the balance of your mortgage. Most claims aren't that intense, but even the smallest claim can cost you time, money and aggravation.

How does title insurance protect my investment if a claim should arise?

If a claim is made against your property, title insurance will, in accordance with the terms of your policy, assure you of a legal defense and pay all court costs and related fees. Also, if the claim proves valid, you will be reimbursed for your actual loss up to the face amount of the policy.

What are the different types of title insurance available?

Lender's Title Insurance

Lender's title insurance is usually required to get a mortgage loan. Lender's title insurance protects your lender against problems with the title to your property - for example, if someone sues to say they have a claim against the home. Lender's title insurance does not protect your investment in the home (your equity). If someone sues with a claim against your home, you are the first person responsible. The lender's title insurance policy only covers claims that impact the lender's loan.

Owner's Title Insurance

When you purchase your home, you typically receive a deed, which shows the seller transferred their legal ownership, or "title" to their home, to you. Title insurance can provide protection if someone later sues and says they have a claim against the home from before you purchased it. Common claims come from a previous owner's failure to pay taxes or from contractors who say they were not paid for work done on the home before you purchased it.

How much does title insurance cost?

The cost of owners title insurance varies based on the purchase price of the property. Unlike other insurance premiums, which must be paid annually, a title insurance premium is paid one time only at settlement. The premium is figured based on the purchase price as follows; up to $100,000 = $5.75 per thousand, over $100,000 = $5.00 per thousand (ex: $100,000 = 575.00; $200,000 = $1,075.00). Lenders title insurance policies can be issued for as little as $25.00 if they are considered "simultaneous issue policies", which means they are issued the same time as the owner's policy. Additional costs are determined by which "endorsements" (additional coverages) are required by the particular lender, such as the Florida Form 9.

Who pays for title insurance?

In Florida it varies per county and can be negotiated in the contract. The seller generally pays for the title insurance and chooses the title/closing company in most Florida counties.

For an excellent discussion, see: State of Florida, Department of Financial Services, Title Agents and Title Insurance, What You Need to Know When Buying, Selling or Refinancing a Home.