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5 major title problems that can derail a closing

On Behalf of | Oct 25, 2023 | Title Issues And Litigation |

Whether you represent a buyer or a seller, the path between making a real estate deal and actually getting through closing can be full of twists and turns.

Title issues, for example, commonly crop up in real estate deals. All property has a history, and unclear or encumbered titles can end up derailing a once-promising agreement. While title problems can take all kinds of forms, these are some of the most common.

Unresolved liens

One of the most common titled issues in Florida real estate transactions is unresolved liens. A lien is a legal claim against the property, typically due to unpaid debts or taxes. If these liens are not addressed before closing, the buyer could inherit these financial obligations.

Boundary disputes

When property lines are unclear or contested by neighbors, it can lead to lengthy legal battles. Plus, no buyer wants to invest in a property until they know exactly what they’re getting.


Easements grant a third party the right to use or access a portion of the property in question. While some easements (like those that grant utility companies access to the land to fix wires or trim trees) aren’t likely to cause problems, other easements can negatively affect a property’s potential uses and value.

Errors in the record

A simple clerical error – like the misspelling of someone’s name when a deed is transferred or a mistake on the address – can create havoc before closing day. To complete a transaction, errors on the deed itself have to be identified and fixed and the deed refiled.

Illegal deeds

Even if the chain of title on a piece of property seems perfectly clear, it’s possible that the deed is illegal. If a transfer involved an undocumented immigrant, someone who lied about being single when they were married, a legal minor or someone of unsound mind, the deed may not be valid.

It’s usually possible to overcome a title issue and get a real estate transaction back on track, but it’s important to act quickly. A proactive approach to the situation and seeking experienced legal guidance can help.