“Isla Bermeja” appears on maps from the 1700’s near the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico. But nobody knows where it really is, if exists at all. The Mexican government want’s to use it to establish the border to Mexico, and take ownership of some oil rich deposits, that otherwise lie in international waters. Title to these deposits is in dispute, and oil puts a lot of money at stake.
A house is typically the largest purchase a person will make in a life time. It would be distressing to find out that someone else claims ownership of your house. Maybe the sellers thought they owned it, but some technicallity proves otherwise. More typically, a shed or a corner of the garage might cross into someone else’s land. In either case, your quiet enjoyment of your home is in jeopardy. When you buy a home with a mortgage, the bank has you pay for a title insurance policy that protects them from such title worries. But, this does not protect your equity, only the portion still owed to the bank. Your title company will have offered you an owners policy. Not everyone gets one, since it is not required. It is that policy which will come to your defense when your neighbor says your home is on their property. Maybe you will be fine, but that lost island is a reminder why you might want your own title insurance policy.
Photo credit, Wonderlane.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 established the current FHA loan limits. FHA loans are the most popular financing choice right now. You can buy a house with only 3.5% of the purchase price as a down payment. The seller can help with other closing costs. But you have to keep the loan value below the limit set for each county. Maryland has pretty high limits, so first time home buyers should be fine. Still it is good to know what the limits are:
|County||Single Family Loan Limit|
Look up other states or multi-family home limits at the HUD FHA Mortage Limits page.
Photo credit, Rob Pongsajapan.