Prior to buying a California home, it is important to make sure that there are no issues with its title. Otherwise, you may have to pay a significant amount of money to defend yourself against those who have valid claims to the home that you just purchased. In some cases, you may have to relinquish a property that was improperly sold by someone who wasn’t its legal owner.
Was the home sold by someone pretending to be its owner?
It isn’t uncommon for individuals to purchase properties that they don’t occupy on a regular basis. For instance, a person may purchase a home to use as a rental property or vacation home. In such a scenario, it may be relatively easy for someone who shares the same name as the owner to pass themselves off as the actual owner of a home.
However, if the actual property owner finds out about the sale, they can take steps to invalidate it. In the event that you find yourself involved in a title dispute, you should obtain legal representation.
Unknown heirs may have a valid claim to your home
If a home is being sold because the most recent owner died, you should make sure that it hasn’t already been titled in another person’s name. In some cases, beneficiaries won’t find out about a loved one’s passing for weeks, months or years after it happens. However, assuming that the home was bequeathed to another person as part of a valid will, trust or other estate plan document, that individual likely owns the property.