There are several flavors of deeds available in Ohio. These include Warranty Deeds, Quit Claim Deeds and Fiduciary Deeds. Each flavor differs in what the seller of the property represents to you about the title you are being given.
- A Warranty Deed gives the greatest level of protection you can get. In a Warranty Deed, the seller says that the seller has good title to the property, has the right to sell the property, and that if anyone else ever claims that they have an interest in the property, the seller will defend your ownership of the property.
- A Quit Claim Deed does not give much protection at all. In a Quit Claim Deed, the Seller says that you are receiving whatever interest in the property the Seller has. That could be a full and complete interest in the property or no interest at all. The only thing the Seller promises is that no one claiming through the seller will claim an interest in the property.
- A Fiduciary Deed is a deed typically given by the Executor or Administrator of a Decedent’s estate, or the Trustee of a Trust. The representations in a Fiduciary Deed are pretty weak. The fiduciary only says that the Fiduciary has the power to sell the property, and that no beneficiary of the estate or trust has any claim to the property. Absent any additional warranties, the Fiduciary makes no representation as to any defects in the title.
If one is purchasing an interest in real estate from a stranger, it is best to insist that a Warranty Deed be given. If one is buying property from an estate or trust, that may not be possible. In that instance it is important that the purchaser obtain title insurance in connection with the purchase.