Although these one-page documents appear quite simple, there is much more to a deed than meets the eye. There are different types of deeds that convey different types of interests in real property, each of which hinges upon the specific language used in the deed.
First let’s look at what a deed is. A deed is defined as any legal instrument that conveys an ownership interest in an asset to a new owner. In other words, a deed is not the same thing as a title; a deed is the vehicle used to transfer title to an asset. This blog will focus on the types of deeds recognized in Michigan when conveying an interest in real property.
There are three main types of deeds in Michigan: warranty deeds, quitclaim deeds, and covenant deeds.
With a warranty deed, the grantor (seller) warrants that they have good title to the property and that they have a right to sell the property to the grantee (buyer). “Good title” means that there are no liens, conditions, or restrictions on the property. Thus, a warranty deed warrants that the grantor has good title regardless of what may have occurred prior to the grantor acquiring the property. In other words, the grantor is promising that the grantee will be able to enjoy the property free from any claim brought by any third parties.
A quitclaim deed is the opposite of a warranty deed in that the grantor is transferring title to a piece of property but is not warranting that they have good title to that property. A quitclaim deed only transfers whatever interest that the grantor has in the property at the time of the conveyance. There is no warranty that the grantor even owns the property.
Covenant deeds provide a limited warranty of title. These types of deeds only convey a warranty for the time period that the grantor actually owned the property. The only warranty that the grantor makes on a covenant deed is that they have not done anything that would cause issues with the title during the time period in which they had title to the property. No warranties are made in regard to what may have occurred prior to the grantor acquiring title, however.
For assistance with deeds and other issues pertaining to real estate law, contact our Michigan attorney team at Grewal Law PLLC. We offer free consultations to all potential clients, without any obligation to move forward. Reach us online here or at (888) 211-5798!