Married Owners

When you buy from a married owner do you have the owner complete and record a Disclaimer Deed before they sign the Warranty Deed?

@suitedconnector I’ve always just seen the spouse sign the warranty deed along with the original owner (say, if a person buys a property when they’re single, gets married, and then sells it).

This depends on the state’s dowry laws, I believe. In some states, the new spouse automatically gets an ownership interest by marriage. In other states, they don’t. In any event, the way to make sure you’re clear is to get both to sign off.

I’ve also seen it where the new spouse will sign a Quit Claim Deed to transfer their interest separately (which sounds like it’s the same concept as a Disclaimer Deed). Probably just a different way to skin the same cat.

@retipsterseth I just found out that one of the owners passed away in 2020 and her former spouse is out of contact with her extended family. How would you handle this?

@suitedconnector, that sounds like a question for a title company.

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@retipsterseth Yea, I have been communicating with a couple title companies. The annoying part is the additional fees because the title co. want $175 mobile notary fee for every person that has to sign documents and there are 7 parties in total on the seller side. And each one of those people will require a lien search.

Seems like it would be a clusterF though, if I tried to self-close.

@suitedconnector You might be able to get your own mobile notary and get five seller signatures at the same time for $175 plus $20 each. Agreed lots of moving parts and lost dead people can lead to a cluster F. Nice James Bond winning hand.

@sean-markey Yeah, I thought about that. The notary is not as big a deal as there are two missing probates clouding the title. Fortunately, I checked with a title company for a quote on a title search. They did a preliminary (no charge) and found these red flags.

I told the owner that if they can clear the title, then we can move forward and cover the closing costs. Just too much headache, and time involved, for me.

No financial gain from the time spent researching this property, but learning more. The owner is going to have his (lawyer/brother in law) handle it for no expense. How they would take care of two probates and title search of multiple owners, with no expense, seems hardly possible. I have a feeling they are just going to QuitClaim it to some sucker.

@sean-markey Sellers are all located in different parts of the U.S.