What is the difference between a deed and title?

In real estate, the terms “deed” and “title” are often used interchangeably, but they actually refer to different aspects of property ownership. Here’s an explanation of the difference between the two:
A deed is a legal document that transfers the ownership of a property from one party to another. It serves as proof of ownership and outlines the specific details of the property transfer, including the names of the buyer (grantee) and the seller (grantor), a legal description of the property, and any conditions or restrictions that may be attached to the transfer. The deed is signed by the grantor and typically needs to be notarized and recorded with the appropriate government authority, such as the county recorder’s office. There are different types of deeds, such as warranty deeds, quitclaim deeds, and special warranty deeds, each offering different levels of protection to the buyer.
Title refers to the legal right of ownership and possession of a property. It represents the bundle of rights associated with the property, including the right to use, enjoy, transfer, and sell it. When someone has clear title to a property, it means they have the legal right to possess and use the property without any conflicting claims. The title is established through a comprehensive examination of public records, including deeds, court records, and other documents, known as a title search or title examination. This process helps identify any existing liens, encumbrances, or ownership disputes that could affect the ownership rights. Once the title search is complete and any issues are resolved, a title insurance policy is typically issued to protect the buyer or lender from any future claims or defects in the title.
In summary, a deed is the physical document that transfers ownership of a property, while title represents the legal right to ownership and possession. The deed is the means by which the transfer is made, and the title ensures that the ownership is legally valid and free from any conflicting claims or encumbrances.

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