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Unrecorded Lien Search

A property lien is a notice attached to a property, and normally made part of the public record, indicating that a creditor claims you owe it some money. Potential buyers of said property will learn about the lien through a normal title search; however, unrecorded liens can negatively affect a buyer, and here’s how:

Many title companies are not required to, and therefore are not conducting unrecorded lien searches on properties prior to closing. Unrecorded liens can consist of, but are not necessarily limited to, water and sewer service charge liens, open or expired permits and other debts such as unpaid real estate taxes and special assessments. If not disclosed to buyers, can add up to hundreds or even thousands of dollars in debt in which they will be responsible to pay upon acquiring the property.

Some of the items an Unrecorded Lien Search can uncover include:

Water and Sewer Service Charge Lien

A delinquency for unpaid water and sewer service charges, penalties, interest, and administrative costs can constitute a lien against real property. If any real property sold before the lien is cleared, it can transfer to the new owner.

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Special Assessment Liens

Large portions of special assessments are for road and sewer improvements. These special assessments are often billed in installments of 10-20 years. Special Assessments are due and payable with the real estate property taxes. Unpaid Special Assessments are not recorded; however, a homeowner or property owner with a mortgage on the property may place their mortgage in jeopardy by failing to pay a Special Assessment Lien, resulting in the mortgage company enacting foreclosure procedures. Additionally, these Special Assessment Liens can be transferred to a buyer during a sale. The responsibility for settlement, and the headache of the debt also transfers to the new owner at closing.

To reassure a property buyer, a complete Florida Municipal Lien Search should be conducted to ensure that there are no existing liens or obligations on the property.

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Using a professional lien search company, such as Florida Municipal Lien Search (FLMS), will ensure that buyers will be aware of municipal issues that would not be disclosed on a title search. The small cost of a professional lien search in Florida can uncover a large liability and other information that is vitally important. This information could potentially save the new property owner thousands of dollars, save hours of work to untangling the lien and save the owner from untold stress.

Florida Municipal Lien Search provides fast, reliable unrecorded lien search services throughout the state of Florida for those researching residential and commercial real estate. Contact FMLS to request a search of municipal property history for additional liens on a property that may not show up on a title search.

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