What is title insurance

Title insurance is a specialised insurance policy which protects against possible risks that can threaten the legal ownership of purchased property or affect a person’s right to occupy and use their land and therefore cause financial loss.

Title insurance protects homebuyers and mortgage lenders against defects or problems with a title when there is a transfer of property ownership.

If a title dispute arises during or after a sale, the title insurance company may be responsible for paying specified legal damages, depending on the policy.

Who needs title insurance?

Anyone who is concerned whether the property of interest may have risks involved that are not readily seen, such as:

  • Illegal or unapproved building works or extensions
  • Unpaid rates or taxes
  • Unregistered easements
  • Survey and boundary problems
  • Fraud, counterfeit and identity theft
  • Disadvantage due to non-compliance with zoning or development laws

Who offers title insurance?

There are two companies/insurers of title insurance in Western Australia

First Title, and

Stewart Title.

Both offer a policy of lifetime protection for a one-off premium.

Is anything not covered by title insurance?

  • Risks which cause no loss or damage
  • Native title claims
  • Boundary walls or fences
  • Pest infestation
  • Risks or loss arising from environmental contamination or environmental protection
  • Structures not built to approved standards or dilapidation of structures

For more information on title insurance for residential property here is a link to Title insurance for home buyers.