How To Deal With Liens When Selling Your Home

Law Blog

One of the best steps you can take when listing your house for sale is hiring a company to perform a title search report on your property. This is something that is affordable and will reveal if you have any liens on the property. A lien is the right to keep property belonging to someone else until a debt owed by that person is fulfilled. If you do this and discover there is a lien, you will need to remedy the problem before closing, especially if you feel this is an error. A real estate lawyer can help you do this. Here are some things to keep in mind about it.

Liens Are Paid At Closing

When a person sells a house, all liens on the house must be paid at closing. This is a rule that is done to protect homeowners and people buying homes. When a person buys a home, the title on the home must be clear and free of liens. If there are liens on a house, they will be discovered during the title work process that is required when homes are sold. If you have a lien, even if it is one you feel is wrong, the amount you owe on the lien will be deducted from your proceeds at your closing.

Ways To Get Rid Of Liens

When liens are placed on homes, they are done so by courts. In other words, a person cannot just put a lien on your property without a court order. Because of this, it will take a court order to have a lien removed. If you have proof that you already paid the amount in question, you could petition the court to remove the lien based on the fact that it was already paid. If this is the case, getting the lien removed will be easy, yet it can take a few weeks or longer for this to take place. This is one of the reasons you should start on this right after listing your house. You will not want your sale being held up due to a lien of this nature.

If you feel that the lien is inaccurate, you could always dispute it; however, this can be a long process, and you will need an attorney for sure if you need to do this. Disputing a lien will require the creditor to prove that the debt is real and that it has not been satisfied. If you have any type of proof that you should not owe the lien, you will need to submit it. If the court approves your dispute, you will not have to pay it.

The only other option you really have is to pay the lien in full, and you could do this prior to closing or at closing.

Dealing with liens is not a pleasant part of closing on a house, but it happens. If you need help with this, talk to a real estate attorney today. 


29 May 2017