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Warranty Deed

Of all the real estate deeds, general warranty deeds provide the most protection to the grantee (buyer). This type of deed guarantees that the grantor (seller) holds clear title to a piece of real estate and has a right to sell it to the grantee. The guarantee is not limited to the time the grantor owned the property as with a special warranty deed; rather, it extends back to the property's earliest title. As such, earlier grantors occasionally find themselves confronted by issues from future grantees. The grantors also guarantee that, during their period of ownership, they did not encumber the property in any way that prohibits its transfer. Incorporate express references to any easements, restrictions, or other agreements of record that relate to the specific parcel of land, into the text of the deed. Providing this information puts the grantee on notice of the warranty's limitations and upholds the covenant against encumbrances.

Traditionally, general warranty deeds include six common law covenants of title. Those six covenants can be separated into two categories: present covenants and future covenants.

Present Covenants:
Covenant of seisin: the grantor promises that he/she holds valid title to and possession of the property
Covenant of right to convey: the grantor guarantees that he/she may legally convey both title to and possession of the property
Covenant against encumbrances: the grantor legally declares the property to be free of any liens (encumbrances) unless stated in the deed

Future Covenants:
Covenant of warranty: the grantor will protect and defend the buyer against anyone who claims a superior title to the property
Covenant of quiet enjoyment: the grantee will be able to access and use the property without restrictions
Covenant of further assurances: the grantor will take reasonable actions necessary to resolve defects in the title

Unless the state statutes include a specific deed form and/or rules that define the protections covered by a warranty deed, each of the covenants should be identified in the habendum clause of the deed.
Related Warranty Deed Information:

What is the difference between a quit claim deed, and a warranty deed?
Both a Quit Claim Deed and a Warranty Deed are legal documents used to transfer property rights. A quit claim deed transfers only the interest in a piece of real estate that the grantee (generally the seller) happens to have. A person could give someone a quit claim deed to the Brooklyn Bridge...


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