Delivering clear title is often an issue with divorcing sellers.
I’m currently involved in a buyer-represented transaction that includes a listing and Seller’s Property Disclosure signed only by the husband.
While doing my own informal title search before writing my buyer’s offer, I discovered the name of a female with a different last name who was also “on title” (another legal owner) for the subject property.
When I questioned the listing agent, I was told that both people were on title, had since divorced, and it was “no problem”.
I don’t know about you, but there’s something about those words that cause me to assume that the opposite could be true.
This is an obvious issue of the seller not having clear title.
This situation puts my buyers in the position of having an offer that had been accepted by only one of the two legal owners as we prepare to spend $300 on a home inspection tomorrow.
When I questioned the validity of the accepted offer yesterday, both the listing agent and the escrow officer told me that the sellers are on good terms, and that the ex-wife will sign a quitclaim deed at closing relinquishing her interest in the property.
I would prefer that the ex-wife sign the quitclaim deed now; not at closing, because situations like this provide the opportunity for an unhappy ex-wife to renegotiate the terms of the divorce by holding up the closing.
But, I can’t require the ex-wife to do that.
This will probably all work out okay, but it could’ve been avoided by having the ex-wife sign and record a quitclaim deed as part of the divorce proceedings.
The situation was likely caused by a do-it-yourself divorce, or perhaps the attorney(s) missed it during the divorce proceedings.