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Quitclaim Deed: A Document that transfers property-interest

Posted on: 05th Jun, 2005 10:42 pm
A quitclaim deed is a legal document that transfers your interest to another individual in the property such as
  • House - A building for human habitation
  • Land - A place which can be used for habitation, investment or any other purpose
  • Mobile home - A movable house that is parked in a place
Two parties are there in a quitclaim deed process – grantor and grantee. Grantor is the party that transfers the property and the grantee is the party that gets the property. In a quitclaim deed, no promises are made by the grantor that the property is lien-free. Before opting for this deed, it is advised that the grantor should consult an attorney and know about the possible consequences of such property transfer.

To help you get a clear idea of what a quitclaim deed (often misspelled as quick claim deeds or quit claim deeds) is, the whole information is divided into different sections:

When to use quitclaim deed

A quitclaim deed is commonly used in the following situations:

  1. In a divorce, when an ex-spouse transfers ownership of the property to the other.
  2. A spouse may add other spouse's name to the property title after marriage only by issuing the spouse a deed.
  3. At the time of purchasing a property, ownership is transferred from the seller to the buyer. For such transfer, parties involved may use a quitclaim, general warranty, or special warranty deed.
  4. Sometimes, previous owner of the property may retain some ownership interest in the property. This interest can be transferred to the new owner with the help of a quitclaim deed.
  5. A person planning a will or a living trust can use the document to transfer ownership of the property into a trust or the person they want to inherit the property.
  6. Parents willing to transfer the ownership in a property to a child or a relative before the property gets stuck in a probate.

6 Steps to follow in a quit claim deed

Preparing a quitclaim deed is very easy. Here are some quick steps to do so.

  1. First of all, obtain a quit claim deed form. You can get the form online. You can also obtain it from the office of the local county recorder.
  2. Fill in the names of the grantor and the grantee. If possible address of both the parties has to be filled in.
  3. Signature of the grantor should be there in the form. In some states, signatures of both the grantor and the grantee are required.
  4. A public notary should verify the signature of the grantor. Generally, the grantor has to sign the deed in front of a public notary.
  5. A legal description of the property is a must. This is because of the fact that without the legal description, deed can’t be recorded in the recorder’s office.
  6. In order to make the deed valid, it should be recorded in the recorder’s office.

Life estates and quitclaim deeds

Even after transferring a property through quitclaim, you can have the right to stay there till your death. This is possible only if you retain a life estate for yourself. A life estate is a kind of estate where you retain interest in the property for your lifetime, and specifically name the person to whom the property is to go to immediately after your death.

Reverse/undo quitclaim

Once you have signed a quitclaim, the only way to get the property back is to have the grantee quitclaim it back to you or prove the transfer was invalid. If you can prove that you signed the deed under threat, external pressure, or the grantee made you sign by telling you false information, then you can have the quitclaim deed invalidated. For invalidating a deed, consult an attorney in your state. Learn more...

This legal document is a good way to transfer property if you are transferring it between family. The best way to transfer property to or from someone who is not family is to use a general or special warranty deed which gives the buyer warranties as well as transfers property.

Related Readings

Related Forum Discussions

I have lived in a house which had to be purchased as a 2nd mortgage by my parents. I have been here paying the mortgage for 2 1\2 years but I am not on the deed. When we go to sell it my parents would have to pay capital gains taxes on it. Is there a way around this? I was told that if we get my name on the deed and can show them that I have been paying then we would not have to pay capital gains. thanks for any help
Posted on: 21st Dec, 2005 07:21 pm
Hi Eric,

Welcome to MortgageFit Forums.

Under the 1997 tax reform introduced by the federal government, if your parents add you in the title of the house, and if you live and own that house for 2 out 5 previous years before it is sold, you are eligible for an exemption of $250,000 as capital gains tax. In other words, capital gains up to $250,000 ($500,000 if you are married and file a joint tax return) is tax free.

It will be better if you consult a tax advisor.

God Bless You,

For MortgageFit,
Posted on: 21st Dec, 2005 07:46 pm
my aunt is buying a house but putting it my mom's name (because my mom has better credit). she wants my mon to sign a quit claim deed. how does this affect my mom? my mom agreed to put the mortgage in her name but she told my aunt that if there are any problems with payments or anything that is damaging to her credit she would sell the house or return it to the back. does signing a quit claim deed change this?
Posted on: 22nd Dec, 2005 08:23 am
Hi rd,

I have answered a similar query in another section on quit claim deed . You can have a look in there.

You can freely ask any more doubts that you have.

Posted on: 22nd Dec, 2005 08:56 am
how about if she signs the quit claim deed and a novation?
Posted on: 22nd Dec, 2005 11:16 am
Hi Pcastillo,

Welcome to Mortgagefit Forums.

Through a novation your mom can get rid of the mortgage. But a novation will require the lender's approval.

If you can manage to get the lender's approval, then it is a correct thing to do. But since your aunt's credit did not qualify for the mortgage, so there are possibilities that the lender may disagree to accept.

But you can always talk to the lender and check if he accepts before signing the deed.

Feel free to post if you have any more doubts.

God bless you.

For MortgageFit,
Posted on: 22nd Dec, 2005 11:27 am
Posted on: 28th Dec, 2005 01:23 pm
Hi Micky,

Welcome to our community.

Through quit claim deed you can have the ownership title transferred in your name.

But the mortgage will still remain in your husband's name. To transfer the mortgage you should get it refinanced in your name.

Always involve an attorney in the process of the deed to avoid any trouble in the future.

Ask for any more doubts.

Posted on: 28th Dec, 2005 01:33 pm
Is the quick deed valid only after it is filed, or is it the moment you sign it.. Thanks
Posted on: 29th Dec, 2005 10:27 am
Hi Nancy,

Welcome to MortgageFit Forums.

After a deed is signed, it must be delivered to the grantee to make it valid. You can go for either of the two ways -

  • The deed is to be given to the grantee
  • The deed should be recorded with the county where the property is located

In case of recording the deed, a small charge is taken but it will protect the grantee. Before getting it recorded you must have an excise tax affidavit filed. In case you are going to hold it after it is signed, a lawyer must be involved to make it sure that the delivery is valid.

Hope you got the information. For anything more, kindly post it here.

God bless you.

For MortgageFit,
Posted on: 29th Dec, 2005 10:39 am
I was contacted this week by a person in FL stating that I need to sign a quit claim deed for property left by an uncle after his death. Am I under any obligation to sign this paperwork. To me something seems fishy here?
Posted on: 30th Dec, 2005 05:45 am

Sorry to hear about your uncle. Regarding, signing of quitclaim deed you should ask the person who contacted you to show you some authentic documents where it is written that you need to sign a quit claim deed.

You can also check it with your uncles lender and confirm whether your uncle proposed your name as his successor. I will also advise you to take help from an attorney.

Posted on: 30th Dec, 2005 06:05 am
If I want to add someone as an owner of my home but not remove anyone would a quit claim deed be appropriate.
Posted on: 30th Dec, 2005 01:54 pm
Hi Dan,

I think, in case a property has more than 1 owner, the co-owners are not affected by the quit claim deed.
Posted on: 30th Dec, 2005 02:17 pm
can one sale his interest in a property even if someone else is on the deed
Posted on: 01st Jan, 2006 02:02 pm
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