the process is handled in many different ways… - Posted by David Krulac
Posted by David Krulac on December 02, 2002 at 12:30:08:
mostly all sloppy. Most of the time around here there are no recorded leins on the property. but if your dealing with a vacant house, and the owner is older and in some home, then there is an indication of a possible problem.
And its creating a new occurance of the elderly and their families abandoning their equity in house, because they can never collect on it. The whole process IMHO is counterporductive to society. Houses sit abandoned, neglected and deteriating, for many years. I’ve personally seen houses empty for 10 years or more. Many of then are free and clear of any mortgages.
One example that I looked at this year was the home of a woman 108 years old who had the house built in 1952 and was in a home for the last 10 years. The frame house was peeling paint all over the exterior, the roof leaked and needed replaced, the basement took in water, and there were tree saplings growing in the rain gutters. The house was mess and getting worse as each day, week, month, and year took its toll on this house. the boiler didn’t work, there was no hot water and the house had never been connected to the public sewer. There was no mortgage and the only recorded lein was the sewer connection, and service leins. But the county had to sign the sales contract and approve the sale price. No matter waht the sale price was the owner was to get NOTHING, as her nursing bills for the last 10 years exceeded 100% of the equity in the house.
The looking back is usually done by the county or state agency charged with administering nursing care for any body not able to pay their own. People in nursing, assisted living, retirement homes who are paying their own way are not subject to this unrecorded lein. The government has the authority to garnish a person’s equity if they are receiving any government assistance.
There used to be welfare leins, but they were challenged in court as being discrimitory as they were only levied on real estate owners on welfare, not on tenants on welfare. before that change there was situations where the welfare leins exceeded the equity in the property and the owner couldn’t sell with paying off the leins. That was a mess too.
As far as title insurance, they can except certian potential claims and usually there is a clause in the title insurance policy that if there is something that you, the buyer know about that is also excluded from coverage. So if you know of a potential nursing unrecorded lein and don’t tell the title insurance they can refuse claims about that issue.
Since many of the owners are still living there is no probate of living people. If you are buying a property and have to go to a nursing home to get the seller’s signature then there could be a lein. If a relative has POA and the owner is in a nursing home there could be a lein. The government checks deed transfers as they know the assets of their client base. And they don’t have to be in any hurry as they can come back to you 3 years later. And they have the authority to challenge the sale price as being “inadequate”.