Transfer of an Equity Deed

by Eileen Rojas, Demand Media
    Equity in a property is transferred through a deed.

    Equity in a property is transferred through a deed.

    Couples considering a transfer of real estate property need to complete a property deed. A deed is a legal document used to identify and describe a real estate property owner and the property in which he has equity. There are generally three types of property deeds that can be filed in order to transfer the property’s equity from one owner to another: warranty deed, grant deed or quitclaim deed. The type of property deed used is dependent on the specific circumstances surrounding the property transfer and the current ownership rights.

    Warranty Deeds

    In addition to transferring the equity in the property, this type of deed has several benefits. It provides assurance that the property being transferred has good title and is free of liens or other claims. The new property owner can also be compensated if she encounters problems with the property’s title. This is a very popular type of deed that stipulates that the new owner has a legal claim to the property.

    Grant Deeds

    This deed assures that a new owner receiving a property interest does not need to be concerned about another party’s involvement in the transfer. This deed also guarantees that no property liens or encumbrances are transferred to the new owner. Interspousal transfer grant deeds are commonly used when transferring property between married individuals and in divorce settlements. This deed is also advantageous when a couple wishes to refinance and one spouse has poor credit; by transferring equity to the spouse with good credit, there is a greater chance of loan approval. Grant deeds are also not subject to transfer taxes, reassessments that can raise property taxes and are typically not recorded or notarized.

    Quitclaim Deeds

    A quitclaim deed transfers only the current owner’s property interest to a new owner. This type of deed is useful if there is ambiguity involving claims on the property or if the actual property interests transferred are unknown. Quitclaim deeds are often used when a property has title issues or other disputes; when transferring property between related parties; and during divorce settlements where one spouse gives up her interest and both parties are aware of the other person’s property interest.

    Tenancy

    Upon your decision to transfer your property’s equity, consult with a real estate attorney and have him determine tenancy if the property transfer is for two or more individuals. The new owners can own the property as joint tenants, where if one party dies the other joint tenants automatically receive her ownership interest, also referred to as right of survivorship If the property is owned as a tenancy in common, there is no right of survivorship and its possible to transfer the property to a person of choice. Unlike a joint tenancy, outside parties can exercise their rights if the property is transferred to them through a will.

    About the Author

    Eileen Rojas holds a bachelor's and master's degree in accounting from Florida International University. She has more than 10 years of combined experience in auditing, accounting, financial analysis and business writing.

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