House Calls: Paid-Off Mortgage
Ms. Lank: Once we have paid off our mortgage, how long should we wait to get a clear deed? -- K. F.
Answer: In a few states, you're looking for a reconveyance deed, but in most places, what you want is a certificate of satisfaction. Either way, it will prove your loan has been paid off in full (satisfied).
If the lender has put this new document on file in your county public records office, that's all you need. In some states, they're required to do so within 90 days of the payoff. Your public records office can tell you how to check.
Edith: In regards to the recent question from the reader about whether he or she was entitled to a copy of the appraisal: I purchased a home last year, and the lender supplied me with a copy of the appraisal without me asking. I've had seven mortgages on five homes in four states, and I don't recall ever getting a copy of the appraisal before.
The appraisal came in handy in getting my tax assessment reduced somewhat. -- G. W.
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Answer: See the next letter -- sounds as if the law has been changed, probably not too long ago.
Dear Edith: There is no need for kicking and screaming in order to obtain a copy of your appraisal when applying for a mortgage. Federal law requires that the applicant receive a free copy. -- D. M.
Seller Backing Out