WHAT IS CONTAINED IN AN ABSTRACT?
An abstract shows who all has owned a specific piece of property, any mortgages they may have had, easements, if the property ever changed hands through an estate or divorce proceedings, any unpaid judgments a particular owner may have had while he/she owned the property, mechanics liens, ordinances, just to name a few items that are included.
HOW MUCH DOES AN ABSTRACT COST?
This question is asked almost every time a person needs to have his/her abstract updated. The price varies due to how much new information will be placed into the abstract. If it has been several years since the abstract was updated, or we have to make a new one, the cost can be great. But until the abstractor has had a chance to look at your abstract and search their tract indices, court records, tax records, etc., there is no way the abstractor can give you an accurate cost. It's similar to hitting a deer with your car. Until you take it to a body shop, there is no way to tell how much it will cost to fix.
EXPLAIN THE PROCESS OF UPDATING AN ABSTRACT
When you buy property, the seller or his/her agent will bring in the abstract for a preliminary update. The abstractor will search the county records and their own tract indices and identify any new recordings that need to be shown since the previous continuation. This could include mortgages, liens, judgments, easements, divorces, estates and foreclosures, just to name a few items. The abstractor will then type up these new recordings in abbreviated format and then deliver the completed abstract to the buyer's attorney for a preliminary title opinion.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO UPDATE AN ABSTRACT?
Again, it will depend on the number of entries that need to be made. At Union County Abstract, Inc. we strive to maintain Iowa Title Guaranty's standard of a three-day turnaround for a preliminary, seven-day turnaround for a final, and we ask for two weeks for a Root of Title or new abstract. Of course, if we have to wait for documents to be filed, such as a mortgage release, that time can be greater.
WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR PROVIDING THE ABSTRACT?
The seller of the property is normally required to provide the buyer with the abstract.