How to deed a property from an heir - Posted by Jackie

Posted by Rick, the Probate Guy on December 02, 2008 at 18:06:10:

…but the answer could be complicated. If you can live with having defective title (meaning that you don’t require to get title insurance any time soon) and have no immediate plans to resell or borrow on the property from an established lender, then $500 for a deed might just be OK.

However, the missing ingredient is that the seller is not the “owner” and for them to become the owner, the property will likely be subject to some sort of probate court action.

I don’t know beans about SC probate laws however most states have enacted provisions in their probate laws that deal with small estates with property having very little value. We could do a lot of speculating here about what’s required, however, I’d be tempted to give the $500 for deed and possession if you can live with the fact that there may be more holes in your property title (vs. the value) than is worth the trouble of perfecting title.

This is not legal advice; merely a street-wise observation. If you can get certain benefits from the less-than-perfect title ownership of this property, then have fun for a few hundred bucks. If, on the other hand, some other heir comes out of nowhere and gripes about how you “stole” the property, etc., you would have bought more than $500 worth of hornet’s nest.

How to deed a property from an heir - Posted by Jackie

Posted by Jackie on December 02, 2008 at 11:40:46:

I would like to buy land in South Carolina from a friend who is an heir of the person who owns the land and is now dead. I would like to use a quitclaim deed. How would I go about this.

I called title companies in SC and they said I need a lawyer to purchase any property.

I am only going to buy it for no more than $500 and it’s not worth much, and don’t want to search the property for liens, etc. Do I have to have a lawyer to do this? I am stumped because the person is an heir and the owner is dead, so it’s not straight forward. Please advise.


why would you want a Quit claim deed? - Posted by David Krulac

Posted by David Krulac on December 10, 2008 at 14:20:16:

when there could be a title flaw, particuarily with a property where the owner is deceased?

I would want a warranty deed and title insurance, but that’s just me.

Re: How to deed a property from an heir - Posted by John Merchant

Posted by John Merchant on December 08, 2008 at 22:29:13:

I’d tell the seller that you’ll be happy to pay him $500 just as soon as he can deliver you his title policy showing you he owns it f&c.

And I’d make some calls and find an escrow co or escrow lawyer to handle the deed and paperwork for you. In some places this is done by stand-alone escrow co, in others by a lawyer who advertises he/she does RE escrow work.

While all the big title co’s have escrow arms I try to avoid them because they want to follow national co. guidelines, not mine, and they tend to want to do things their way to the detriment of their clients IMHO.

Re: How to deed a property from an heir - Posted by Jimmy

Posted by Jimmy on December 03, 2008 at 05:50:51:

the heir cannot give you good title until the heir is on title. you can however, contractually obligate the heir to deed it over once he has title.

be careful about taking title without doing a lien search. your $500 purchase just might bring you a $27,000 encumbrance. at least have a friendly title person run a preliminary for you.