Title insurance — can someone please explain?

Oct 4th, 2013 | By Michael LeBlanc

It’s been about 20 years and almost 11 million title policies since FCT (then First Canadian Title) opened its doors and created a title insurance industry in Canada. Lawyers use title insurance regularly and, in some parts of the country, almost without exception. Banks and mortgage lenders rely on it. Hundreds of thousands of homeowners have it. One might conclude that it is well understood. But, raise the subject at a backyard barbecue or cocktail party and you’re likely to get blank stares and a bit of mumbling.

What’s more, it’s not easy for the average person to become informed. Lawyers get it. But who has regular, easy access to a lawyer? Insurance brokers can’t help — they don’t sell it. Even the Internet provides no current interactive Canadian source for such information. So, where does one turn for answers? Right here!

FCT is pleased to introduce “The FCT Blog,” a new forum to foster interactive discussion around all things title insurance – and the one place where all your title insurance questions will find informed answers from the industry experts. In the beginning, we will focus on what it is, what it covers, how it is acquired and how claims work. We are open to your questions and plan to address those topics most interesting to you in future posts.

Looking more broadly, FCT recognizes that title insurance is one of many products and services supporting a vibrant housing industry. Through our interaction with buyers, sellers, realtors, lawyers, lenders and appraisers, FCT has built significant expertise and developed unique insights related to our mutual marketplace. As our blog evolves, we plan to share our insights, observations and opinion to build understanding of our evolving marketplace, the changes and impacts we see and the emerging opportunities for innovation and growth. What an opportunity for important dialogue!

So, welcome. We look forward to hearing what you think and how we can serve you better with this exciting, new endeavour.

9 Responses to “Title insurance — can someone please explain?”

  1. Khoi Doan says:

    It is great to have a blog here.

  2. Yamini Padma says:

    This information is very useful.

  3. Matt says:

    As a home owner, can title insurance protect the value of my home from fraud? And if so, what is the fee for that?

    Matt

    • FCT Staff says:

      Hello Matt, Title Insurance protects you from actual loss if the title to your home is stolen or mortgaged by a fraudster. Title Insurance protects you as owner for actual loss for up to two times the amount of insurance. The amount of insurance is usually the amount you paid for the home.

      You can purchase an Existing Home Owner Policy (EHOP) at any time for a one time premium and the cost is dependent on the value of your home and the province of residence. If you want a quote call our EHOP line at 1-877-888-1153.

  4. Michael says:

    Title insurance is an important matter for prospective home owners

  5. ltcgy@yahoo.ca says:

    hi, after the possesion date 3 weeks, i did a title search by my self and found out there is a lien (condo fee against previous owner), and a mortgage (of previoues owner) still in the title , i called the real estate lawyer and he explained
    the mortage will be discharged in a few weeks, and he bought title insurance for my condo during the closing process (he didn’t tell me before)
    So my questions are :
    – is there a way to check if my title is already insured ?
    what should he provide to me if he already bought it ?
    – will the lawyer have any control over my property if he bought title insurance (i didn’t know anything until he told me)?

    Thanks,

    Lynn

    • FCT Staff says:

      If your property or mortgage has been title insured, the details will normally be in your report from your lawyer. The fee will be included in the list of disbursements (bill). Your lawyer will usually make a note and refer to the policy number. Sometimes they include a copy of the policy.

      Your lawyer is not the insured party in the title insurance policy ‒ it is you the owner under the homeowner’s policy and the lender for the lender policy.

      Your lawyer is responsible for receiving the discharge for the lien and prior mortgage from the seller’s lawyer.

  6. Glenn freezman says:

    Title insurance is like the gallbladder. Everyone has it, but nobody is sure of what it is or what it’s good for. A lot of people don’t understand title insurance, they think it’s like a Kardashian: A no brainer! Title insurance protects you, the buyer, against something like the previous owner failing to pay property taxes. And you know what happens to people who don’t pay taxes? They serve two years …… in Congress.

    make it a great day!!

  7. Vivian says:

    Does title insurance for home owners warrants the current use of the land and buildings complies with the existing municipal land use bylaw? And any encroachment into the neighbouring lands/municipal lands issue?

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