Owning property or buying a home is a huge component in achieving the “American Dream.” Most who buy a property take out a mortgage to finance their purchase. Making the final payment on that mortgage is an immensely satisfying experience and a well-earned accomplishment. You are free from future mortgage payments, and in the eyes of the bank, the government, and the public, you can do with the property what you wish. In many cases, property owners pay off their mortgages when selling their properties and moving to a new home.
To ensure that everyone knows that your property is all yours either to keep or sell to new owners, when you pay off your mortgage, the bank (also known as the “mortgagor”) records a satisfaction of mortgage notice with the county clerk in the county where your property is located. This demonstrates to the county that your mortgage is fully satisfied and paid for, in full, including all principal, interest, and other fees. It also shows the county and the public that you are the legitimate and full owner of the formerly-mortgaged property. Among other things, this allows you to sell your property. In most cases, the mortgagor is required to record this notice within 30 days of the day you paid off your mortgage, or the mortgagor owes you money.
If the mortgagor does not record a satisfaction of mortgage notice, this can complicate the transfer process when you are selling your property. Unfortunately, when a potential buyer does a title search on the property, it will appear to the buyer and the county that you do not have a marketable title and cannot transfer it to the new owner. This may derail a potential sale. Continue reading